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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Postharvest Quality and Processing of Sugarcane and Sweet Sorghum for Sugar and Ethanol Production

Location: Commodity Utilization Research

Title: Yeast fermentation affected by homo- and hetero-fermentative Lactobacilli isolated from fuel ethanol distilleries with sugarcane products as substrates

Authors
item Basso, Thiago -
item Gomes, Fernanda -
item Lopes, Mario -
item DE Amorim, Henrique -
item Eggleston, Gillian
item Basso, Luiz -

Submitted to: Meeting Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: July 25, 2011
Publication Date: July 27, 2011
Citation: Basso, T.O., Gomes, F.S., Lopes, M.L., De Amorim, H.V., Eggleston, G., Basso, L.C. 2011. Yeast fermentation affected by homo- and hetero-fermentative Lactobacilli isolated from fuel ethanol distilleries with sugarcane products as substrates. In: Proceedings of the 2011 National Symposium for Bioprocesses, July 24-27, 2011, Caxias do Sul, RS. p. 1-5.

Interpretive Summary: In fuel ethanol production the bacterial contamination of yeast fermentation broths still poses a great technological problem. Contamination by lactobacilli bacteria is largely dependent on the initial population of the bacteria and the yeast in the broths. Lactobacillus bacteria that depend on both glucose and fructose as their feedstock are the worst culprit for contamination as they are the most successful in competing with yeast for sugars during fermentation and cause the greatest loss in ethanol yields. These hetero-fermentative lactobacilli are prevalant in Brazilian fuel ethanol plants and are expected to be a problem in U.S. fuel ethanol plants.

Technical Abstract: The antagonism between by yeast and lactobacilli is largely dependent on the initial population of each organism. While homo-fermentative lactobacillus present higher inhibitory effect upon yeast when in equal cell number, in industrial fuel ethanol conditions where high yeast cell densities prevail hetero-fermentative lactobacillus are more deleterious, since they succeed in competing with yeast for sugars during fermentation. Both bacteria metabolic types caused reduced ethanol yield during yeast fermentation, but this effect was more pronounced with the hetero-fermentative strain in industrial fuel ethanol conditions. The greater glycerol formation by yeast as well as higher concentrations of bacterial metabolites produced (lactic and acetic acids, plus mannitol) and higher bacterial growth, all led to a greater sugar consumption and decreased ethanol yield in industrial yeast fermentation contaminated with the hetero-fermentative lactobacillus strain. Studies are in progress on the prevalence of homoand hetero-fermentative lactobacilli in Brazilian fuel ethanol plants and on the differential effect of these two types of bacteria on glycerol production by yeast.

Last Modified: 7/30/2014