Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/27/2018
Publication Date: 1/3/2019
Citation: Ashby, R.D., Solaiman, D. 2019. Sophorolipids: Unique microbial glycolipids with vast application potential. In:Banat, I.M. and Thavasi,R.(eds.).CRS Press, Taylor & Francis Group, Boca Raton, Florida, pp.27-54
Technical Abstract: Sophorolipids are microbial glycolipids that are derived from certain yeast species in yields reportedly as high as 400 g/L. Their amphiphilic chemical makeup imparts surfactancy to these materials which makes them interesting as detergent additives. However, detergency is not the only property of these molecules that has drawn interest. Sophorolipids have been demonstrated to exhibit antimicrobial properties against certain bacterial strains (Gram+ strains are more susceptible than Gram- strains) that can be of interest in food protection, oral hygiene and skin infections. This chapter is devoted to a discussion of the chemical diversity associated with sophorolipids, the biochemical pathways involved in sophorolipid biosynthesis specifically within Starmerella bombicola (the most studied producing strain), the known chemical modifications applied to sophorolipids for property enhancement and potential environmental and industrial applications for these unique molecules.