Nutritional and Biological evaluation of using Spirulina algae as anew source of protein

Document Type : Original Article


1 Nutrition and Food Science Department, Faculty of Home Economics, Al-Azhar University, Egypt.

2 Nutrition and Food Science Department, Faculty of Home Economics, Al-Azhar University, Egypt


Spirulina platensis (SP) alga has been a common dietary substance around the world from ancient times. This study was aimed to using Spirulina as a novel protein source, especially in growth phase. Thirty six male albino rats aged six weeks were divided into six groups according to the protein source as following: The casein groups (C1, C2, and C3) contain (100, 200, and 300 g casein /kg diet) as (10%, 20% &30% casein), respectively. On the corresponding side, the spirulina clusters (SP1, SP2, and SP3) contained (157, 315 and 472 gm algal protein/kg food) respectively. It lasted 28 days. SP has high total antioxidant activity (39.2 %). SP groups recorded significant increases in feed intake, body weight gain, feed efficiency ratio and protein efficiency ratio compared with casein groups. While casein recorded significant increases in apparent digestibility, Co-efficient compared to groups of SP algae. Eating Spirulina has significantly preserved liver and kidney function. As for complete blood picture, the groups of SP3 recorded highest percentage in Hb and RBCs compared with C3 group, other than WBCs, which was lower in SP3.  Significant increase in the antioxidant enzymes in liver tissues were observed in SP groups, while Malondialdehyde recorded a significant reduction in the same groups. SP treatment increased GH levels in all groups. On the other side, the results of alpha tumor necrosis factors recorded a significant decrease in groups of SP compared with the groups of casein. In conclusion, Spirulina can be used as a new protein replacement


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