Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: October 31, 2008
Publication Date: March 1, 2009
Citation: Liu, S. 2009. Conversion of biomass to ethanol by other organisms. In: Vertes, A.A., Blascheck, H.P., Yukawa, H., Qureshi, N., editors. Biomass to Biofuels. Chapter 14. West Sussex, UK:John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. p. 293-310. Technical Abstract: The efficiency of microbial fermentation of biomass derived sugar mixtures into fuels and chemicals is one of the barriers to the overall economics of cellulosic ethanol industry. Unlike starch, biomass hydrolysates usually contain mixed sugars, sugar degradation products, organic acids, polyphenolics, and other compounds found in plant materials. Some of these compounds are inhibitors for yeast fermentation. Although Saccharomyces has long been used in the starch-based ethanol industry, this organism without manipulations is inefficient for a biomass-based industry. Microbes other than conventional yeast have been explored for the efficient conversion of biomass hydrolysates into ethanol and value-added products. In this chapter, recent progress in developing bacterial biocatalysts will be reviewed with an emphasis on engineered strains that are promising for lignocellulosic biomass conversion, including recombinant Zymomonas mobilis, Escherichia coli, and Gram-positive Corynebacterium, Lactobacillus, Bacillus, and other thermophiles.