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Beatrice Brix da Costa

Institution: University of Bremen
Office: ZMT, room 2019
Phone: +49 421 23 800 - 69
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Other webpage(s): Beatrice's ZMT web page


Beatrice brix da Costa

PhD Project

Ecophysiology of the edible green alga Caulerpa lentillifera. A bioeconomic approach to a sustainable food production and healthy nutrition.

Food security poses one of the biggest challenges of our time and the ever-growing world population raises the demand for nutritious and sustainable food sources. Aquaculture is seen as a solution to respond to these needs and the rapid growth of this industry has shown its valuable contributions to food security. Algae represent the third-largest aquaculture crop in the world, mainly due to macroalgal/seaweed production for human food. The edible green macroalga Caulerpa lentillifera, also known as sea grapes or “green caviar”, is very popular in the Indo-Pacific region due to its special texture and nutritional properties.

In the course of my dissertation, my aim is to explore and establish possible co-cultivation approaches of sea grapes together with other low-trophic marine organisms like high value red algae or another fed aquaculture species. Co-culturing provides additional crop and can subsequently increase the income security of farmers during poor harvests. Other pillars of my work include the identification of interactive effects of abiotic factors and their effects on the growth and physiology of sea grapes, reproduction strategies of the alga and the consumers’ perceptions of sea grapes as a food source.  

My PhD position at the University’s Marine Botany working group collaborates with the “SeaGrapes” project of the Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research (ZMT, Bremen). The project is in cooperation with the Institute of Oceanography (IO) in Nha Trang, Vietnam and the sea grape farm (VIJA) in Van Phong Bay.

Thesis Committee

Prof. Dr. Kai Bischof University of Bremen
Dr. Karin Springer University of Bremen
Dr. Andreas Kunzmann Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research (ZMT), Bremen
Dr. Annette Breckwoldt Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research (ZMT), Bremen