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Mimouni V.,IUT Departement Genie Biologique | Mimouni V.,CNRS Sea, Molecules and Health | Ulmann L.,IUT Departement Genie Biologique | Ulmann L.,CNRS Sea, Molecules and Health | And 7 more authors.
OCL - Oilseeds and fats, Crops and Lipids | Year: 2015

Marine microalgae are photosynthetic microorganisms producing numerous bioactive molecules of interest for health and disease care such as lipids rich in omega-3 fatty acids -as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA, 20:5 n-3) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA, 22:6 n-3)- and carotenoids (e.g., β-carotene, fucoxanthin, astaxanthin). It has already been shown that these molecules, individually used, are benefic in the prevention of diseases such as those associated with the cardiovascular risks, but also in some carcinomas. When these molecules are combined, synergistic effects may be observed. Microalgae, as a dietary supplement, can be used to study these synergistic effects in animal models in which dyslipidemia can be induced by a nutrition treatment. Different marine microalgae of interest are studied in this context to determine their potential effect as an alternative source to marine omega-3 rich fish oils, actually widely used for human health. Actually, the pharmaceutical and nutrition industries are developing health research programs involving microalgae, trying to limit the dramatic reduction of fish stocks and the associated pollution in the marine environment. The aim of this review is threefold: (1) to present research on lipids, particularly long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, as components of marine microalgae used as food supplements; (2) to present the health benefits of some microalgae or their extracts, in particular in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases and (3) to highlight the role of Odontella aurita, a marine microalga rich in EPA used as food supplement with the aim of preventing cardiovascular diseases. © V. Mimouni et al., Published by EDP Sciences, 2015.

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