This contribution compares the supercritical (SC) CO2 extraction of astaxanthin from disrupted Haematococcus pluvialis cysts in either an aqueous suspension or packed bed of dry powder at 40 or 70°C and 35-55 MPa. The initial stage of the process for aqueous suspensions consisted of a solubility-controlled removal of water that delays oleoresin extraction in comparison to the dry substrate. In addition, residual water in the partially dried suspension made oleoresin extraction slower than from the dry substrate. However, the presence of water in an aqueous suspension surprisingly made the oleoresin extraction more sensitive to temperature in comparison to dry powder, affecting the selectivity of the extraction for astaxanthin in a large extend. All rights reserved, Elsevier.