University of Tehran

Extraction of astaxanthin esters from shrimp waste by chemical and microbial methods

Carotenoid pigments are the most important and numerous pigments that are found in nature. These compounds soluble in lipids are the factors that produce yellow-red color in plant and animal products. In this group of pigments astaxanthin has important applications in human and animal food industries specifically neutracutical  pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries. The Food and Drug Administration of the United States has permitted it for use in the aqua-cultural industry (Golkhoo, 2006). The main sources for this pigment can be found in many favorable sea foods, for example salmon, Oncoryncus mykiss, sea bream, lobster and caviar. Also in birds like flamingo and quails, in microorganisms, insects, crustaceans and micro-green alga (Haematococcus pluvialis) it can be found (Guerin, 2003). Astaxanthin has effects on many of these creatures’ main body function like prevention from oxidation of essential unsaturated fatty acids, prevention from effects of ultraviolet light, Immunological reactions, pigmentation, communication, and reproduction. There is currently considerable interest in the role carotenoids in delaying or preventing degenerative diseases such as atherosclerosis, cancer, aging and eye diseases. The protective effect of astaxanthin was even more pronounced compared to 3- carotene. Furthermore, a significant (P<0.001) decrease in the incidence of induced colon cancer in rats fed with astaxanthin versus those administered only the carcinogen, was found.

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