Recombinant protein production in prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms was a key enabling technology for the rapid development of industrial and molecular biotechnology. However, despite all progress the improvement of protein production is an ongoing challenge and of high importance for cost-effective enzyme production. With the epMEGAWHOP mutagenesis protocol for vector backbone optimization we report a novel directed evolution based approach to increase protein production levels by randomly introducing mutations in the vector backbone. In the current study we validate the epMEGAWHOP mutagenesis protocol for three different expression systems. The latter demonstrated the general applicability of the epMEGAWHOP method. Cellulase and lipase production was doubled in one round of directed evolution by random mutagenesis of pET28a(+) and pET22b(+) vector backbones. Protease production using the vector pHY300PLK was increased ~4-times with an average of ~1.25 mutations per kb vector backbone. The epMEGAWHOP does not require any rational understanding of the expression machinery and can generally be applied to enzymes, expression vectors and related hosts. epMEGAWHOP is therefore from our point of view a robust, rapid and straight forward alternative for increasing protein production in general and for biotechnological applications.
Directed evolution; epMEGAWHOP; Recombinant protein production; Lipase expression; Cellulase expression; Protease expression
The refinement of biodiesel or renewable diesel from bacterial lipids has a great potential to make a contribution for energy production in the future. This study provides new data concerning suitable nutrient concentrations for cultivation of the Gram-positive Rhodococcus opacus PD630, which is able to accumulate large amounts of lipids during nitrogen limitation. Enhanced concentrations of magnesium have been shown to increase the final optical density and the lipid content of the cells. Elevated phosphate concentrations slowed down the onset of the accumulation phase, without a clear effect on the final optical density and the cell’s lipid content. A robust growth of R. opacus was possible in the presence of ammonium concentrations of up to 1.4 g l-1 and sucrose concentrations of up to 240 g l-1, with an optimum regarding growth and lipid storage observed in the range of 0.2 to 0.4 g l-1 ammonium and 20 to 40 g l-1 sucrose, respectively. Moreover, R. opacus showed tolerance to high salt concentrations.
Biodiesel; Biofuels; Lipids; Rhodococcus opacus; Triacylglycerols
Propionibacterium acnes and Staphylococcus aureus are cutaneous pathogens that have become increasingly resistant to antibiotics. We sought to determine if chitosan, a polymer of deacetylated chitin, could be used as a potential treatment against these bacteria. We found that higher molecular weight chitosan had superior antimicrobial properties compared to lower molecular weights, and that this activity occurred in a pH dependent manner. Electron and fluorescence microscopy revealed that chitosan forms aggregates and binds to the surface of bacteria, causing shrinkage of the bacterial membrane from the cell wall. Of special relevance, clinical isolates of P. acnes were vulnerable to chitosan, which could be combined with benzoyl peroxide for additive antibacterial effect. Chitosan also demonstrated significantly less cytotoxicity to monocytes than benzoyl peroxide. Overall, chitosan demonstrates many promising qualities for treatment of cutaneous pathogens.
Chitosan; Benzoyl peroxide; Acne vulgaris; Propionibacterium acnes; Staphylococcus aureus; Antibacterial
It is common practice to freeze dry probiotic bacteria to improve their shelf life. However, the freeze drying process itself can be detrimental to their viability. The viability of probiotics could be maintained if they are administered within a microbially produced biodegradable polymer - poly-γ-glutamic acid (γ-PGA) - matrix. Although the antifreeze activity of γ-PGA is well known, it has not been used for maintaining the viability of probiotic bacteria during freeze drying. The aim of this study was to test the effect of γ-PGA (produced by B. subtilis natto ATCC 15245) on the viability of probiotic bacteria during freeze drying and to test the toxigenic potential of B. subtilis natto. 10% γ-PGA was found to protect Lactobacillus paracasei significantly better than 10% sucrose, whereas it showed comparable cryoprotectant activity to sucrose when it was used to protect Bifidobacterium breve and Bifidobacterium longum. Although γ-PGA is known to be non-toxic, it is crucial to ascertain the toxigenic potential of its source, B. subtilis natto. Presence of six genes that are known to encode for toxins were investigated: three component hemolysin (hbl D/A), three component non-haemolytic enterotoxin (nheB), B. cereus enterotoxin T (bceT), enterotoxin FM (entFM), sphingomyelinase (sph) and phosphatidylcholine-specific phospholipase (piplc). From our investigations, none of these six genes were present in B. subtilis natto. Moreover, haemolytic and lecithinase activities were found to be absent. Our work contributes a biodegradable polymer from a non-toxic source for the cryoprotection of probiotic bacteria, thus improving their survival during the manufacturing process.
Probiotics; γ-PGA; Cryoprotectant; Toxicity; Bifidobacteria; Lactobacillus
Efficient degradation of cellulosic biomass requires the synergistic action of the cellulolytic enzymes endoglucanase, cellobiohydrolase, and β-glucosidase. Although there are many reports describing consolidation of hydrolysis and fermentation steps using recombinant Saccharomyces cerevisiae that express cellulolytic enzymes, the efficiency of cellulose degradation has not been sufficiently improved. Although the yeast S. cerevisiae cannot take up cellooligosaccharide, some fungi can take up and assimilate cellooligosaccharide through a cellodextrin transporter. In this study, a S. cerevisiae strain co-expressing genes for several cell surface display cellulases and the cellodextrin transporter was constructed for the purpose of improving the efficiency of direct ethanol fermentation from phosphoric acid swollen cellulose (PASC). The cellulase/cellodextrin transporter-coexpressing strain produced 1.7-fold more ethanol (4.3 g/L) from PASC during a 72-h fermentation than did a strain expressing cellulase only (2.5 g/L). Direct ethanol production from PASC by the recombinant S. cerevisiae strain was improved by co-expression of cellulase display and cellodextrin transporter genes. These results suggest that cellulase- and cellodextrin transporter-co-expressing S. cerevisiae could be a promising technology for efficient direct ethanol production from cellulose.
Bioethanol; Cellulase; Yeast; Cellodextrin transporter; Cell surface display; Cellulose
The present study aims to investigate coelomocytes, immune mediators cells in the echinoderm Holothuria tubulosa, as an unusual source of antimicrobial and antibiofilm agents. The activity of the 5kDa peptide fraction of the cytosol from H. tubulosa coelomocytes (5-HCC) was tested against a reference group of Gram-negative and Gram-positive human pathogens. Minimal inhibitory concentrations (MICs) ranging from 125 to 500 mg/ml were determined against tested strains. The observed biological activity of 5-HCC could be due to two novel peptides, identified by capillary RP-HPLC/nESI-MS/MS, which present the common chemical-physical characteristics of antimicrobial peptides. Such peptides were chemically synthesized and their antimicrobial activity was tested. The synthetic peptides showed broad-spectrum activity at 12.5 mg/ml against the majority of the tested Gram-positive and Gram-negative strains, and they were also able to inhibit biofilm formation in a significant percentage at a concentration of 3.1 mg/ml against staphylococcal and Pseudomonas aeruginosa strains.
The immune mediators in H. tubulosa are a source of novel antimicrobial peptides for the development of new agents against biofilm bacterial communities that are often intrinsically resistant to conventional antibiotics.
Biofilm; Staphylococci; Antimicrobial peptides (AMP); Innate immunity
The presence of several putative Baeyer-Villiger Monooxygenases (BVMOs) encoding genes in Aspergillus fumigatus Af293 was demonstrated for the first time. One of the identified BVMO-encoding genes was cloned and successfully overexpressed fused to the cofactor regenerating enzyme phosphite dehydrogenase (PTDH). The enzyme named BVMOAf1 was extensively characterized in terms of its substrate scope and essential kinetic features. It showed high chemo-, regio- and stereoselectivity not only in the oxidation of asymmetric sulfides, (S)-sulfoxides were obtained with 99% ee, but also in the kinetic resolution of bicyclo[3.2.0]hept-2-en-6-one. This kinetic resolution process led to the production of (1S,5R) normal lactone and (1R,5S) abnormal lactone with a regioisomeric ratio of 1:1 and 99% ee each. Besides, different reaction conditions, such as pH, temperature and the presence of organic solvents, have been tested, revealing that BVMOAf1 is a relatively robust biocatalyst.
Eukaryotic BVMO; Aspergillus; Baeyer-Villiger oxidation; Kinetic resolution; Sulfide oxidation
A psychrotrophic marine strain of the ascomycetous yeast Yarrowia lipolytica (NCYC 789) synthesized silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) in a cell-associated manner. These nanostructures were characterized by UV-Visible spectroscopy and scanning electron microscope-energy dispersive spectrometer (SEM-EDS) analysis. The brown pigment (melanin) involved in metal-interactions was obtained from the cells. This extracted pigment also mediated the synthesis of silver nanoparticles that were characterized by a variety of analytical techniques. The melanin-derived nanoparticles displayed antibiofilm activity. This paper thus reports the synthesis of AgNPs by the biotechnologically important yeast Y. lipolytica; proposes a possible mechanism involved in the synthetic process and describes the use of the bio-inspired nanoparticles as antibiofilm agents.
Yarrowia lipolytica; Silver nanoparticles; Melanin; Antibiofilm activity
Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells were immobilized in calcium alginate and chitosan-covered calcium alginate beads and studied in the fermentation of glucose and sucrose for ethanol production. The batch fermentations were carried out in an orbital shaker and assessed by monitoring the concentration of substrate and product with HPLC. Cell immobilization in calcium alginate beads and chitosan-covered calcium alginate beads allowed reuse of the beads in eight sequential fermentation cycles of 10 h each. The final concentration of ethanol using free cells was 40 g L-1 and the yields using glucose and sucrose as carbon sources were 78% and 74.3%, respectively. For immobilized cells in calcium alginate beads, the final ethanol concentration from glucose was 32.9 ± 1.7 g L-1 with a 64.5 ± 3.4% yield, while the final ethanol concentration from sucrose was 33.5 ± 4.6 g L-1 with a 64.5 ± 8.6% yield. For immobilized cells in chitosan-covered calcium alginate beads, the ethanol concentration from glucose was 30.7 ± 1.4 g L-1 with a 61.1 ± 2.8% yield, while the final ethanol concentration from sucrose was 31.8 ± 6.9 g L-1 with a 62.1 ± 12.8% yield. The immobilized cells allowed eight 10 h sequential reuse cycles to be carried out with stable final ethanol concentrations. In addition, there was no need to use antibiotics and no contamination was observed. After the eighth cycle, there was a significant rupture of the beads making them inappropriate for reuse.
Immobilized cells; Fermentation; Ethanol; Glucose; Sucrose; Alginate
Organohalide-respiring Desulfitobacterium strains are believed to play an important role in the bioremediation and natural attenuation of chlorinated aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbons. However, several studies have reported that chloroform significantly inhibits microbial reductive dechlorination of chloroethene. In this study, we examined the effect of chloroform on several Desulfitobacterium strains, including ortho-chlorophenol-dechlorinating Desulfitobacterium dehalogenans JW/IU-1 and Desulfitobacterium hafniense DCB-2, and also the chloroethene-dechlorinating strain D. hafniense TCE1. In medium containing 3-chloro-4-hydroxyphenylacetate as an electron acceptor, chloroform inhibited the growth of strains JW/IU-1 and DCB-2. Although chloroform did not directly inhibit dechlorination of 3-chloro-4-hydroxyphenylacetate by resting cells, cells cultivated with chloroform showed decreased dechlorination activity. Moreover, transcription of the gene encoding the reductive dehalogenase CprA decreased significantly in cells cultivated with chloroform. These results indicate that chloroform inhibits the growth and dechlorination activity of strains JW/IU-1 and DCB-2 via inhibition of cprA transcription. In contrast, cultivation of strain TCE1 in the presence of chloroform gave rise to a PceA reductive dehalogenase gene-deletion variant of strain TCE1; a similar phenomenon was observed in our previous study of chloroethene-dechlorinating D. hafniense strain Y51. Our results suggest that chloroform extensively inhibits the dechlorination activity of Desulfitobacterium strains, and that the inhibitory mechanism appears to differ between ortho-chlorophenol dechlorinators and chloroethene dechlorinators.
Desulfitobacterium; Reductive dechlorination; Organohalide respiration; Growth inhibition; Chloroform; Chlorophenol; Chloroethene
In this work a defined co-culture of the lactic acid bacterium Lactobacillus zeae and the propionate producer Veillonella criceti has been studied in continuous stirred tank reactor (CSTR) and in a dialysis membrane reactor. It is the first time that this reactor type is used for a defined co-culture fermentation. This reactor allows high mixing rates and working with high cell densities, making it ideal for co-culture investigations. In CSTR experiments the co-culture showed over a broad concentration range an almost linear correlation in consumption and production rates to the supply with complex nutrients. In CSTR and dialysis cultures a strong growth stimulation of L. zeae by V. criceti was shown. In dialysis cultures very high propionate production rates (0.61 g L-1h-1) with final titers up to 28 g L-1 have been realized. This reactor allows an individual, intracellular investigation of the co-culture partners by omic-technologies to provide a better understanding of microbial communities.
Propionic Acid; Lactic Acid; Lactobacillus zeae; Veillonella criceti; Dialysis chamber reactor; Co-culture; Fermentation
The potential of Lactobacillus johnsonii NCC 533 to metabolize chlorogenic acids from green coffee extract was investigated. Two enzymes, an esterase and a hydroxycinnamate decarboxylase (HCD), were involved in this biotransformation. The complete hydrolysis of 5-caffeoylquinic acid (5-CQA) into caffeic acid (CA) by L. johnsonii esterase occurred during the first 16 h of reaction time. No dihydrocaffeic acid was identified in the reaction mixture. The decarboxylation of CA into 4-vinylcatechol (4-VC) started only when the maximum concentration of CA was reached (10 μmol/ml). CA was completely transformed into 4-VC after 48 h of incubation. No 4-vinylphenol or other derivatives could be identified in the reaction media. In this study we demonstrate the capability of L. johnsonii to transform chlorogenic acids from green coffee extract into 4-VC in two steps one pot reaction. Thus, the enzymatic potential of certain lactobacilli might be explored to generate flavor compounds from plant polyphenols.
Chlorogenic acid; 4-vinylcatechol; Esterase; Decarboxylase; L. johnsonii
Current problems of filamentous fungi fermentations and their further successful developments as microbial cell factories are dependent on control fungal morphology. In this connection, this work explored new experimental procedures in order to quantitatively check the potential of some culture conditions to induce a determined fungal morphology by altering both hyphal morphology and conidia adhesion capacity. The capacity of environmental conditions to modify hyphal morphology was evaluated by examining the influence of some culture conditions on the cell wall lytic potential of Aspergillus niger MYA 135. The relative value of the cell wall lytic potential was determined by measuring a cell wall lytic enzyme activity such as the mycelium-bound β-N-acetyl-D-glucosaminidase (Mb-NAGase). On the other hand, the quantitative value of conidia adhesion was considered as an index of its aggregation capacity. Concerning microscopic morphology, a highly negative correlation between the hyphal growth unit length (lHGU) and the specific Mb-NAGase activity was found (r = -0.915, P < 0.001). In fact, the environment was able to induce highly branched mycelia only under those culture conditions compatible with specific Mb-NAGase values equal to or higher than 190 U gdry.wt-1. Concerning macroscopic morphology, a low conidia adhesion capacity was followed by a dispersed mycelial growth. In fact, this study showed that conidia adhesion units per ml equal to or higher than 0.50 were necessary to afford pellets formation. In addition, it was also observed that once the pellet was formed the lHGU had an important influence on its final diameter. Finally, the biotechnological significance of such results was discussed as well.
Aspergillus niger; Culture conditions; β-N-Acetyl-D-Glucosaminidase; Hyphal morphology; Conidia adhesion; Pellets formation; Metabolite production
Long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFAs) such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are considered essential omega-3 fatty acids in human nutrition. In marine microalgae EPA and/or DHA are allegedly involved in the regulation of membrane fluidity and thylakoid membrane functioning. The cellular content of EPA and DHA may therefore be enhanced at low temperature and irradiance conditions. As a result, polar and cold temperate marine microalgal species might potentially be suitable candidates for commercial EPA and DHA production, given their adaptation to low temperature and irradiance habitats.
In the present study we investigated inter- and intraspecific EPA and DHA variability in five polar and (cold) temperate microalgae. Intraspecific EPA and DHA content did not vary significantly in an Antarctic (Chaetoceros brevis) and a temperate (Thalassiosira weissflogii) centric diatom after acclimation to a range of irradiance levels at two temperatures. Interspecific variability was investigated for two Antarctic (Chaetoceros brevis and Pyramimonas sp. (Prasinophyceae)) and three cold-temperate species (Thalassiosira weissflogii, Emiliania huxleyi (Prymnesiophyceae) and Fibrocapsa japonica (Raphidophyceae)) during exponential growth. Interspecific variability was shown to be much more important than intraspecific variability. Highest relative and absolute levels of DHA were measured in the prymnesiophyte E. huxleyi and the prasinophyte Pyramimonas sp., while levels of EPA were high in the raphidophyte F. japonica and the diatoms C. brevis and T. weissflogii. Yet, no significant differences in LC-PUFA content were found between polar and cold-temperate species. Also, EPA and DHA production rates varied strongly between species. Highest EPA production rate (174 μg L-1 day-1) was found in the Antarctic diatom Chaetoceros brevis, while DHA production was highest in the cold-temperate prymnesiophyte Emiliania huxleyi (164 μg L-1 day-1). We show that, following careful species selection, effective mass cultivation of marine microalgae for EPA and DHA production may be possible under low temperature and irradiance conditions.
Eicosapentaenoic acid; Docosahexaenoic acid; Thalassiosira weissflogii; Chaetoceros brevis; Fibrocapsa japonica; Emiliania huxleyi; Pyramimonas sp.
In the last few years, synthesis of carrier-free immobilized biocatalysts by cross-linking of enzyme aggregates has appeared as a promising technique. Cross-linked enzyme aggregates (CLEAs) present several interesting advantages over carrier-bound immobilized enzymes, such as highly concentrated enzymatic activity, high stability of the produced superstructure, important production costs savings by the absence of a support, and the fact that no previous purification of the enzyme is needed. However, the published literature evidences that a) much specific non-systematic exploratory work is being done and, b) recovered activity calculations in CLEAs still need to be optimized. In this context, this contribution presents results of an optimized procedure for the calculation of the activity retained by CLEAs, based on the comparison of their specific activity relative to their free enzyme counterparts. The protocol implies determination of precipitable protein content in commercial enzyme preparations through precipitation with ammonium sulphate and a protein co-feeder. The identification of linear ranges of activity versus concentration/amount of protein in the test reaction is also required for proper specific activity determinations. By use of mass balances that involve the protein initially added to the synthesis medium, and the protein remaining in the supernatant and washing solutions (these last derived from activity measurements), the precipitable protein present in CLEAs is obtained, and their specific activity can be calculated. In the current contribution the described protocol was applied to CLEAs of Thermomyces lanuginosa lipase, which showed a recovered specific activity of 11.1% relative to native lipase. The approach described is simple and can easily be extended to other CLEAs and also to carrier-bound immobilized enzymes for accurate determination of their retained activity.
CLEAs; Lipase; Precipitable protein; Specific activity; Recovered activity
Streptomyces griseus DSM 2608 produces bafilomycin, an antifungal plecomacrolide antibiotic. We cloned and sequenced an 87.4-kb region, including a polyketide synthase (PKS) region, methoxymalonate genes, flavensomycinate genes, and other putative regulatory genes. The 58.5kb of PKS region consisting 12 PKS modules arranged in five different PKS genes, was assumed to be responsible for the biosynthesis of plecomacrolide backbone including 16-membered macrocyclic lactone. All the modules showed high similarities with typical type I PKS genes. However, the starting module of PKS gene was confirmed to be specific for isobutyrate by sequence comparison of an acyltransferase domain. In downstream of PKS region, the genes for methoxymalonate biosynthesis were located, among which a gene for FkbH-like protein was assumed to play an important role in the production of methoxymalonyl-CoA from glyceryl-CoA. Further the genes encoding flavensomycinyl-ACP biosynthesis for the post-PKS tailoring were also found in the upstream of PKS region. By gene disruption experiments of a dehydratase domain of module 12 and an FkbH-like protein, this gene cluster was confirmed to be involved in the biosynthesis of bafilomycin.
Streptomyces griseus; Bafilomycin; Plecomacrolide antibiotic; Polyketide synthase
Debaryomyces nepalensis, osmotolerant yeast isolated from rotten apple, is known to utilize both hexoses and pentoses and produce industrially important metabolites like ethanol, xylitol and arabitol. In the present study, the effect of different growth substrates, trace elements, nitrogen concentration and initial pH on growth and formation of ethanol and arabitol were examined. Optimum conditions for maximizing the product yields were established: glucose as carbon source, an initial pH of 6.0, 6 g/L of ammonium sulphate and addition of micronutrients. Under these best suited conditions, a concentration of 11g/L of arabitol and 19 g/L of ethanol was obtained in shake flask fermentations. The fermentation was scaled up to 2.5 L bioreactor and the influence of aeration, agitation and initial substrate concentration was also determined. Under optimal conditions (150 g/L glucose, 400 rpm and 0.5 vvm) ethanol concentration reached 52 g/L, which corresponds to a yield of 0.34 g/g and volumetric productivity of 0.28 g/L/h, whereas arabitol production reached a maximum of 14 g/L with a yield and volumetric productivity of 0.1 g/g and 0.07 g/L/h respectively.
D. nepalensis; Arabitol; Ethanol; Fermentation; Bioreactor; Optimization
A novel method for the assay of polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA)-degrading ability of triacylglycerol lipases was developed. By applying the natural affinity of lipases towards hydrophobic interfaces, a sensitive and rapid densitometry analysis for the evaluation of hydrolytic activity of lipase droplets towards PHA-coated surface was successfully carried out. We found that 12 out of 14 tested lipases which are of fungal, bacterial and animal origin were able to hydrolyze P(3HB-co-92 mol% 4HB) thin film. The patterns and opacity of the hydrolysis spots of lipases on PHA films allowed easy comparison of PHA-hydrolytic strength of lipases. Lipase from the bacterium Chromobacterium viscosum exhibited the highest PHA-degrading activity. The hydrolytic activity of lipases on water insoluble PHA, emulsified p-nitrophenyl laurate and olive oil were also compared and interestingly some lipases showed better activity when PHA was used as a substrate.
Polyhydroxyalkanoate; Lipase; Densitometry; 4-hydroxybutyrate; Hydrolysis
To enhance the value-added use of methanol-containing raw glycerol derived from biodiesel fuel production, the effect of methanol supplementation on glyceric acid (GA) production by Gluconobacter spp. was investigated. We first conducted fed-batch fermentation with Gluconobacter frateurii NBRC103465 using raw glycerol as a feeding solution. GA productivity decreased with increasing dihydroxyacetone (DHA) formation when the raw glycerol contained methanol. The results of this experiment and comparative experiments using a synthetic solution modeled after the raw glycerol indicate that the presence of methanol caused a change in the concentrations of GA and DHA, two glycerol derivatives produced during fermentation. Other Gluconobacter spp. also decreased GA production in the presence of 1% (v/v) methanol. In addition, purified membrane-bound alcohol dehydrogenase (mADH) from Gluconobacter oxydans, which is a key enzyme in GA production, showed a decrease in dehydrogenase activity toward glycerol as the methanol concentration increased. These results strongly suggest that the observed decrease in GA production by Gluconobacter spp. resulted from the methanol-induced inhibition of mADH-mediated glycerol oxidation.
Acetic acid bacteria; Glyceric acid; Methanol; Membrane-bound alcohol dehydrogenase; Raw glycerol
A fungal strain, Penicillium purpurogenum IAM 15392, produced the azaphilone Monascus pigment homolog when cultured in a medium composed of soluble starch, ammonium nitrate, yeast extract, and citrate buffer, pH 5.0. One of the typical features of violet pigment PP-V [(10Z)-12- carboxyl-monascorubramine] is that pyranoid oxygen is replaced with nitrogen. In this study, we found that glutamine synthetase (glnB) and glutamate dehydrogenase (gdh1) genes were expressed in the culture conditions conducive to PP-V production. Gln and Glu both support PP-V biosynthesis, but PP-V biosynthesis was much more efficient with Gln. We determined that synthesis of Gln by glutamine synthetase from ammonium is important for PP-V production.
Monascus pigment; Amino derivative; Penicillium purpurogenum; Ammonia assimilation; Glutamine synthetase; Glutamate dehydrogenase
Production of the biopolymer polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) in Saccharomyces cerevisiae starts at the end of exponential phase particularly when the specific growth rate is decreased due to the depletion of glucose in the medium. The specific growth rate and the type of carbon source (fermentable/non-fermentable) have been known to influence the cell physiology and hence affect the fermentability of S. cerevisiae. The production of PHB utilizes cytosolic acetyl-CoA as a precursor and the S. cerevisiae employed in this study is therefore a strain with the enhanced cytosolic acetyl-CoA supply. Growth and PHB production at different specific growth rates were evaluated on glucose, ethanol and a mixture of glucose and ethanol as carbon source. Ethanol as carbon source yielded a higher PHB production compared to glucose since it can be directly used for cytosolic acetyl-CoA production and hence serves as a precursor for PHB production. However, this carbon source results in lower biomass yield and hence it was found that to ensure both biomass formation and PHB production a mixture of glucose and ethanol was optimal, and this resulted in the highest volumetric productivity of PHB, 8.23 mg/L · h-1, at a dilution rate of 0.1 h-1.
Polyhydroxybutyrate; Saccharomyces cerevisiae; Specific growth rate
A cylindrical bioelectrochemical reactor (BER) containing carbon fiber textiles (CFT; BER + CFT) has characteristics of bioelectrochemical and packed-bed systems. In this study, utility of a cylindrical BER + CFT for degradation of a garbage slurry and recovery of biogas was investigated by applying 10% dog food slurry. The working electrode potential was electrochemically regulated at −0.8 V (vs. Ag/AgCl). Stable methane production of 9.37 L-CH4 · L−1 · day−1 and dichromate chemical oxygen demand (CODcr) removal of 62.5% were observed, even at a high organic loading rate (OLR) of 89.3 g-CODcr · L−1 · day−1. Given energy as methane (372.6 kJ · L−1 · day−1) was much higher than input electric energy to the working electrode (0.6 kJ · L−1 · day−1) at this OLR. Methanogens were highly retained in CFT by direct attachment to the cathodic working electrodes (52.3%; ratio of methanogens to prokaryotes), compared with the suspended fraction (31.2%), probably contributing to the acceleration of organic material degradation and removal of organic acids. These results provide insight into the application of cylindrical BER + CFT in efficient methane production from garbage waste including a high percentage of solid fraction.
Bioelectrochemical reactor; Supporting material; Carbon fiber textile; Thermophilic methanogenesis; High organic loading rate
This report provides for the first time a novel environment friendly extracellular synthesis of stable silver nano-bioconjugates (SNBCs) at room temperature at pH 5.0 using Penicillium citrinum MTCC 9999 biomass. The UV-Visible spectral scan of dispersed SNBCs solution showed absorption in the region 340–450 nm due to surface plasma resonance (SPR). Typical Transmission Electron Microscopic (TEM) images showed that although two populations were present but most of them were in 20–30 nm range. Average zeta potential of SNBCs was −21 mV suggesting some biomolecules capped the nanoparticles imparting a net negative charge over it. FTIR analysis also showed that biomolecules were involved in stabilization. SNBCs showed strong antibacterial activity against both Gram positive (Bacillus subtilis) and Gram negative bacteria (Escherichia coli). SNBCs also showed strong antifungal activity as assessed against Schizosaccharomyces pombe. In the case of E. coli the minimum inhibitory concentrations (MIC) of SNBCs was 4 μg/ml while in B. subtilis it was 8 μg/ml. In the case of E. coli the minimum bactericidal concentrations (MBC) of SNBCs was 8 μg/ml while in B. subtilis it was 32 μg/ml. The SNBCs exerted its antibacterial and antifungal activity through generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) inside the cell.
Green synthesis; Penicillium citrinum; Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM); Zeta potential; Fourier Transformed Infra-Red Spectroscopy (FTIR); Minimum Inhibitory Concentrations (MIC); Minimum Bactericidal Concentrations (MBC); Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS)
After steam pretreatment of lignocellulosic substrates the fermentation of the biomass derived sugars to ethanol is typically problematic because of both the generally low sugar concentrations that can be supplied and the presence of naturally occurring and process derived inhibitors. As the majority of the inhibitory materials are usually associated with the hemicellulose rich, water soluble component, this fraction was supplemented with glucose to simulate high solids, un-detoxified substrate to see if a high gravity/high cell consistency approach might better cope with inhibition. Several yeast strains were assessed, with the Tembec T1, T2 and Lallemand LYCC 6469 strains showing the greatest ethanol productivity and yield. The addition of supplemental glucose enabled the faster and quantitatively higher removal of hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF). High cell density could provide effective fermentation at high sugar concentrations while enhancing inhibitor reduction. A 77% ethanol yield could be achieved using strain LYCC 6469 after 48 h at high cell density. It was apparent that a high cell density approach improved ethanol production by all of the evaluated yeast strains.
High gravity fermentation; High cell density; Fermentation inhibitors; Steam pretreatment; Softwood; Yeast