Summer School: “Advances in fish aquaculture and microalgae biotechnology”

El Puerto de Santa María (Spain), 17-21th September 2018.

Proteomics of microalgae


Liliana Anjos, João Estêvão and Deborah Power. e-mail:

Comparative Molecular and Integrative Biology (CEIB), Centre of Marine Sciences (CCMAR), University of Algarve, Campus de Gambelas 8005-139 Faro, Portugal



Microalgae offer clear advantages over terrestrial species in terms of rapid production, short generation time, adaptation capacity-metabolic plasticity, huge biodiversity and a panoply of commercial applications, including cosmetics and aquaculture, the targets of Algae4 A&B project. These promising organisms are an important reservoir of novel and valuable bioactive compounds that are largely unexplored, being proteins one of the major constituent (around 25–40% of the dry weight). Furthermore, a broad spectrum of biological properties (eg: antioxidants, antihypertensive, anticoagulant, antitumor, immune-stimulating…) has been attributed to microalgae bio-functional proteins/enzymes and peptides. Omics technologied application to microalgae is just beginning to emerge in the last years and few proteomics studies exist. There is no doubt that this is a niche with potential for biotechnological exploitation that deserves attention and in the context of Algae4A&B project we are contributing to fill this gap.

ProtMar (Recombinant Protein and Biosensors Platform at CCMAR) is assisting Algae4A&B project in a proteomic approach through the application of advanced proteomic technology to microalgae. General proteomics workflow (sample preparation/MS analysis/ data processing and bioinformatics) has been applied to microalgae and the main challenges are being identified and optimized. Our goal is to identify/characterize new microalgae compounds (proteins) with biotechnological applications by proteome mapping and quantitative proteomic.


Acknowledgements: The research leading to these results has received European Funds from H2020 MSCA-RISE project 691102 (Algae4A&B) and funds from the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT) through project CCMAR/Multi/ 04326/2013. LA was in receipt of FCT grant SFRH/BPD/79105/2011 and EU funds from EMBRIC project (grant agreement 654008) with grant CCMAR/SC/BI/09/2018. JE was in receipt of a training grant from the Portuguese Institute for Employment and Vocational Training (IEFP, I.P.)