Interactive effects of nutrient availability, temperature, and irradiance on photosynthetic pigments and color of the brown alga Undaria pinnatifida

Hikaru Endo, Yutaka Okumura, Yoichi Sato, Yukio Agatsuma

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    21 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Color is one of the important factors that determine the commercial value of cultivated marine macroalgae such as the brown alga Undaria pinnatifida (Laminariales; Phaeophyta) in Japan. Macroalgal color is fundamentally derived from the algal photosynthetic pigment content, which is affected by abiotic factors. However, little is known about the quantitative relationship between pigment content and color and the direct effects of abiotic factors on the color of marine macroalgae. We conducted a 24-day indoor culture experiment to assess the combined effects of nutrient availability (enriched and nonenriched seawater), seawater temperature (15 and 5 °C), and irradiance (180 and 30 μmol photons m−2 s−1) on the concentrations of six pigments (chlorophyll (Chl) a, Chl c1, Chl c2, fucoxanthin, violaxanthin, and zeaxanthin) and three color values (lightness L*, redness a*, and yellowness b*) of U. pinnatifida sporophytes. Negative correlations between pigment content and color values of the cultured algae were detected. Reduced nutrient availability, decrease in temperature, and elevated irradiance resulted in decreased pigment contents and increased color values. Moreover, a significant interaction between nutrient availability and temperature indicated that the positive effect of nutrient enrichment was antagonized by a decrease in temperature. These results suggest that U. pinnatifida can discolor under nutrient-poor, winter temperature, and saturated irradiance conditions. To increase the commercial value of this species, artificial nutrient enrichment during spring or cultivation from a deeper depth may be effective.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1683-1693
    Number of pages11
    JournalJournal of Applied Phycology
    Volume29
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jun 1

    Keywords

    • Commercial value
    • L*a*b* color difference
    • Marine macroalgae
    • Nonadditive effect
    • Seaweed aquaculture

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Aquatic Science
    • Plant Science

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