Functional Foods Enriched with Marine Microalga Nannochloropsis oculata as a Source of ω-3 Fatty Acids

Srinivasan Babuskin1, Kesavan Radha Krishnan1, Packirisamy Azhagu Saravana Babu1, Meenatchisundaram Sivarajan2 and Muthusamy Sukumar1*

Centre for Biotechnology, A.C. Tech., Anna University, Chennai-25, India
2Chemical Engineering Division, Central Leather Research Institute, Chennai-20, India

Article history
Received December 3, 2013
Accepted April 14, 2014

Key words
lmarine microalgae, food ingredients, Nannochloropsis oculata, PUFA and fatty acid profile


The demand for functional food incorporated with ω-3 fatty acids is increasing over the years due to their added health benefits, such as reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases, type II diabetes, ocular diseases, arthritis, etc. This study mainly aims to develop functional cookies and pasta enriched with ω-3 fatty acids. Nannochloropsis oculata was used because of its relatively high growth rate, high lipid content, resistance to mixing and contamination together with high nutritional values. The effect of the incorporation of Nannochloropsis oculata biomass on colour, firmness, fatty acid profile and sensory characteristics of cookies and pasta were evaluated. The colour values were found to be stable for two months of storage and the firmness increased with the addition of microalgal biomass. Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) levels (eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids) of 98 mg per 100 g and 63 mg per 100 g were observed in cookies and pasta, respectively, enriched with 1 % of Nannochloropsis oculata biomass. Sensory evaluation showed that the addition of up to 2 and 3 % of microalgal biomass was positively evaluated and accepted for cookies and pasta, respectively. This study confirms that the cookies and pasta enriched with Nannochloropsis oculata biomass might be used as a potential source of ω-3 fatty acids.

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