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Institute for Bioengineering and Biosciences
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Manufacture of Microfibers of Polyhydroxyalkanoate from Cassava Peel Waste by Electrospinning

Manufacture of Microfibers of Polyhydroxyalkanoate from Cassava Peel Waste by Electrospinning | iBB | Scoop.it

Cassava (Manihot esculenta) cultivation is of great importance in many economies, particularly in Colombia. About 630,000 tons of C-rich cassava waste is produced annually and applications to high value products, applying the circular economy concept, must be developed. A recent publication in Journal of Polymers and the Environment assesses the potential use of cassava peel for the production of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) by Cupriavidus necator. A copolymer of P3HB-3HV was produced and processed into electrospun meshes of random and aligned microfibers, allowing the development of structures that can be applied in the context of tissue engineering. This work involved Manuela Fonseca, Frederico Ferreita and Teresa Cesário form BERG-IBB and has been done in collaboration with researchers from the University of Antioquia, Medellin-Colombia.

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Patent on the Biological Production of Xilonic Acid  Awarded to iBB Researchers

Patent on the Biological Production of Xilonic Acid  Awarded to iBB Researchers | iBB | Scoop.it

A biological process for the production of xylonic acid (XA) from xylose or from xylose-rich lignocellulosic hydrolysates has been patented by BERG-iBB researchers Teresa Cesário, Manuela Fonseca and Maryna Bondar (PT 115970). The ability of the wild strain Paraburkholderia sacchari (previously classified as Burkholderia sacchari) DSM 17165 to produce xylonic acid from renewable and sustainable feedstocks is claimed. XA is a potential substitute for gluconic acid (GA), namely in the pharma industry, as a chelating agent, as a precursor of 1,2,4-butanetriol, polyamides and polyesters, as well as in the production of solvents, paints, adhesives and dyes. Moreover, XA, like GA, can be used as a retardant of the setting time of cement paste. XA productivities in the range 4.8 g/(L.h) to 7.1 g/(L.h) and yields between 89% e 100% were achieved, with XA titres of 360 to 390 g/L, using one single, non-pressurised stirred tank reactor operating in the fed-batch mode under dissolved oxygen concentrations higher than 10%  saturation.

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Production of P(3HB), Xylitol and Xylonic Acid by Burkholderia sacchari

Production of P(3HB), Xylitol and Xylonic Acid by Burkholderia sacchari | iBB | Scoop.it
Lignocellulosic materials have been suggested as alternative sustainable carbon sources for bioproduction of biofuels and biomaterials. In a recent publication in New Biotechnology, BERG-iBB researchers led by Teresa Cesário and Manuela Fonseca, in collaboration with Catarina Almeida from ISCSEM and Conceição Oliveira from CQE-IST,  describe the efficient production of poly-3-hydroxybutyrate (P(3HB)) by Burkholderia sacchari using glucose-xylose mixtures that simulate different types of lignocellulosic hydrolysate. The production of xylitol and xylonic acid by the bacterium under specific substrate concentrations is also reported for the first time. Click on title to learn more.

Photo details: section of a poly-hydroxybutyrate filament, Neptilo, wikipedia, public domain.
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Xylonic Acid Production from Xylose by Paraburkholderia sacchari

Xylonic Acid Production from Xylose by Paraburkholderia sacchari | iBB | Scoop.it

Paraburkholderia sacchari has the capacity to produce xylonic acid and xylitol, compounds ranked in the top 30 high-value chemicals from biomass. In a recent paper in Biochemical Engineering Journal, Maryna Bondar, Manuela Fonseca and Teresa Cesário from BERG-iBB reveal the outstanding ability of this bacterium to metabolize D-xylose to xylonic acid. D-xylonic acid is a five-carbon sugar acid that can replace gluconic acid in several applications. The biotechnological production of D-xylonic acid is advantageous over gluconic acid because it uses xylose as carbon source. Xylose is a very abundant sugar in nature and only few native bacterial strains can metabolize it. Fed-batch cultivations in a single bioreactor attained xylonic acid titers of 390 g L-1 and a productivity of 7.7 g L-1 h-1. This simplified process can significantly affect process economics, potentiating its translation to an industrial scale.

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Upgrading the Organic Fraction of Municipal Solid Waste to Biodegradable Bioplastics

Upgrading the Organic Fraction of Municipal Solid Waste to Biodegradable Bioplastics | iBB | Scoop.it

The organic fraction of municipal solid waste (OFMSW) accounts for approximately 30-40% of MSW in Europe. BERG-iBB researchers developed a process that uses this type of waste as a raw material or the production of the biodegradable biopolymer P(3HB). In a first step the complex carbohydrates in the waste are hydrolysed into simple monosaccharides. The hydrolysate is then used as a carbon source to feed and induce the bacterium Burkholderia sacchari to produce P(3HB). In order to overcome nutritional deficiencies and attain a significant polymer accumulation (58% g polymer/g CDW) the C/N ratio was adjusted and the hydrolysate was supplemented with minerals. This work demonstrates that an easily accessible waste can be transformed into valuable biodegradable bioplastics. The work was published in Bioresource Technology.

 

Photo details: municipal waste by OpenIDUser2, GFDL. 

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Microbial Production of Poly(3-hydroxybutyrate co-4-hydroxybutyrate) from Wheat Straw Hydrolysates

Microbial Production of Poly(3-hydroxybutyrate co-4-hydroxybutyrate) from Wheat Straw Hydrolysates | iBB | Scoop.it

Researchers from BERG and Biotrend have reported for the first time the ability of Burkholderia sacchari to produce poly(3-hydroxybutyrate co-4-hydroxybutyrate) - P(3HB-co-4HB) - from xylose-rich wheat straw hydrolysates (WSH) using gamma butyrolactone (GBL) as precursor. In a joint publication in the International Journal of Biological Macromolecules, members from the two teams describe a fed-batch process that achieves high copolymer productivities (0.5 g/L.h) and 4HB incorporations (5.0 molar%) using WSH and GBL.. Due to their properties, polymers like P(3HB-co-4HB) may replace petrochemically produced bulk plastics like polyethylene and polypropylene. The fact that they are completely degradable to carbon dioxide and water through natural microbiological mineralization constitute additional advantages of PHB derivatives.

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