Enzyme and Microbial Technology, Vol.44, No.5, 309-316, 2009
Detoxification requirements for bioconversion of softwood dilute acid hydrolyzates to succinic acid
In this work an Escherichia coli metabolically engineered to ferment lignocellulosic biomass sugars to succinic acid was tested for growth and fermentation of detoxified softwood dilute Sulfuric acid hydrolyzates, and the detoxification requirements were investigated with activated carbon and/or overliming treatments. Detoxified hydrolyzates supported fast growth and complete fermentation of all hydrolyzate Sugars to succinate at yields comparable to pure Sugar, while untreated hydrolyzates were unable to support either growth or fermentation. Activated carbon treatment was able to remove significantly more HMF and phenolics than overliming. However, in some cases, overliming treatment was capable of generating a fermentable hydrolyzate where activated carbon treatment was not. The implications of this are that in addition to the known organic inhibitors, the changes in the inorganic content and/or composition due to overliming are significant to the hydrolyzate toxicity. It was also found that any HMF remaining after detoxification was completely metabolized during aerobic cell growth on the hydrolyzates that were capable of supporting growth. (C) 2008 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.