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A New Method for Selective Extraction of Torularhodin from Red Yeast Using CO2-SFE Technique

TitoloA New Method for Selective Extraction of Torularhodin from Red Yeast Using CO2-SFE Technique
Tipo di pubblicazioneArticolo su Rivista peer-reviewed
Anno di Pubblicazione2024
AutoriAmbrico, Alfredo, Larocca Vincenzo, Trupo Mario, Martino Maria, Magarelli Rosaria Alessandra, Spagnoletta Anna, and Balducchi Roberto
RivistaApplied Biochemistry and Biotechnology
Parole chiaveAnti-inflammatories, Carbon dioxide, Carotenoids, CO2-SFE, Commercial market, Cost effectiveness, funding_text 1=Open access funding provided by Ente per le Nuove Tecnologie, l'Energia e l'Ambiente within the CRUI-CARE Agreement., Organic solvents, Red yeast, Rhodotorula, Selective extraction, Solvent extraction, Sporobolomyces, Supercritical condition, Synthesised, Torularhodin, Yeast

Torularhodin is a dark pink colored carotenoid belonging to the xanthophylls group that can be biologically synthesized by red yeasts, especially by Rhodotorula and Sporobolomyces genera. The growing interest in this molecule is due to its biological activities such as antioxidant, anticholesterolemic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and anticancer. To satisfy potential commercial markets, numerous methods have been proposed to develop a cost-effective and environmentally friendly downstream process for the purification of torularhodin. However, obtaining high purity products without resorting to the use of toxic solvents, which can leave residues in the final preparations, remains a major challenge. In this context, the present study aimed to develop a new efficient method for the isolation of torularhodin from the red yeast Rhodotorula strain ELP2022 by applying the extraction technique with supercritical CO2 (CO2-SFE) in two sequential steps. In particular, in the first step, the dried lysed biomass of yeast was subjected to the action of CO2 in supercritical conditions (CO2SC) as sole solvent for extraction of apolar carotenoids. In the second step, the residual biomass was subjected to the action of CO2SC using ethanol as a polar co-solvent for the extraction of torularhodin. Both steps were carried out at different operating parameters of temperature (40 and 60 °C) and pressure (from 300 to 500 bar) with a constant CO2 flow of 6 L min−1. Regardless of the operating conditions used, this method allowed to obtain an orange-colored oily extract and a red-colored extract after the first and second step, respectively. In all trials, torularhodin represented no less than 95.2% ± 0.70 of the total carotenoids in the red extracts obtained from the second step. In particular, the best results were obtained by performing both steps at 40 °C and 300 bar, and the maximum percentage of torularhodin achieved was 97.9% ± 0.88. Since there are no data on the selective recovery of torularhodin from red yeast using the SFE technique, this study may be a good starting point to optimize and support the development of industrial production of torularhodin by microbial synthesis. This new method can significantly reduce the environmental impact of torularhodin recovery and can be considered an innovation for which an Italian patent application has been filed. In a circular bioeconomy approach, this method will be validated up to a pilot scale, culturing the strain Rhodotorula spp. ELP2022 on low-cost media derived from agri-food wastes. Graphical Abstract: (Figure presented.). © The Author(s) 2024.


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Citation KeyAmbrico2024