Current status of pharmacological potentials of phycocyanin

Author : Apurva Gupta, Rishi Kumar Saxena and Surendra Singh

Phycocyanin (PC) is a blue, light harvesting pigment in cyanobacteria, rhodophytes and cryptophytes. It is one of the phycobiliproteins that forms phycobilisome- a light harvesting complex in cyanobacteria. PC is water soluble and strongly fluorescent. It has recently been exploited for its fluorescent and pharmacological properties. Moreover, its use as the healthy ingredient in cyanobacterial based foods and food additive is also gaining recognition due to the increasing awareness of harmful effects of synthetic compounds and inclination of community towards the usage of natural products. More recently, PC content of phytoplankton has proved to be a useful index for the amount of cyanobacteria in water sample. The present review focuses on recent developments in clinical, dietary and fluorescent applications of phycocyanin.

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