Young, Eric Mosher
Antioxidants play an important role in human health, and are industrially relevant as pigments, cosmetics, and food additives. There has been an increase in natural production of these molecules from plants and fungi, such as the carotenoid producing basidiomycete Xanthophyllomyces dendrorhous. Previous studies show that X. dendrorhous carotenogenesis can be light-induced, but there is little information on the mechanism or specificity of this regulation. This project examined preferential light activation of X. dendrorhous carotenoids. We find that β-carotene production is greatest under UV radiation while that of astaxanthin is greatest in red/green light. This is relevant for optimization of industrial production and fundamental understanding antioxidant regulation and mechanisms.
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Major Qualifying Project
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