The effect of elevated pH and salt concentration on the growth of the freshwater microalga Neochloris oleoabundans was investigated. A study was conducted in 24-well plates on the design of a growth medium and subsequently applied in a photobioreactor. An artificial seawater medium with reduced Ca(2+) and PO(4)(3-) could prevent mineral precipitation at high pH levels. Growth was characterized in this new medium at pH8.1 and at pH10.0, with 420mM of total salts. Specific growth rates of 0.08h(-1) at pH8.1 and 0.04h(-1) at pH10.0 were obtained under controlled turbidostat cultivation. The effect of nitrogen starvation on lipid accumulation was also investigated. Fatty acids content increased not only with nitrogen limitation but also with a pH increase (up to 35% in the dry biomass). Fluorescence microscopy gave visual proof that N. oleoabundans accumulates oil bodies when growing in saline conditions at high pH.