Submitted to: Biotechnology for Fuels and Chemicals Symposium Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/22/2010
Publication Date: 4/22/2010
Citation: Nichols, N.N., Saha, B.C., Dien, B.S., Cotta, M.A. 2010. Use of the fungus Coniochaeta ligniaria to remediate fermentation inhibitors from cellulosic sugar streams [abstract]. Biotechnology for Fuels and Chemicals. Paper No. 11-05.
Technical Abstract: Biochemical conversion of biomass to fuels or chemicals is often hampered by the presence of inhibitory compounds contained in sugar streams derived from lignocellulosic biomass. Dilute acid pretreatment, in particular, generates numerous fermentation inhibitors including 2-furaldehyde (furfural) and 5-hydroxymethylfurfural, along with organic acids and aromatic compounds. Inhibitory compounds must be remediated in order for efficient fermentation of biomass hydrolysates to proceed. Biological abatement is a promising approach for removing inhibitors that neither consumes chemicals nor generates wastes. In particular, fungal isolate Coniochaeta ligniaria, when inoculated into the hydrolysates prior to fermentation, metabolizes inhibitory compounds, including a variety of aromatic acid, aliphatic acid, aldehyde, and phenolic inhibitors. Biological abatement has been evaluated on several herbaceous sources of biomass including crop residues and potential energy crops. Bioabatement of biomass hydrolysates led to complete sugar utilization and eliminated extended fermentation lag times observed in fermentations of the unconditioned hydrolysates. Application of a bioabatement process was demonstrated in 100 liter fermentations where C. ligniaria was used to condition wheat straw hydrolysate prior to fermentation with Escherichia coli FBR5.