Special Issue "Microbial Production of Added-value Products from Renewable Resources"

A special issue of Fermentation (ISSN 2311-5637).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 October 2018

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Luísa Seuanes Serafim

CICECO – Aveiro Institute of Materials, Chemistry Department, University of Aveiro, Campus Universitário de Santiago, Aveiro, Portugal Country: Portugal
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Interests: industrial biotechnology; waste valorization; biorefinery; biopolymers; biosurfactants; acidogenic fermentation; mixed microbial cultures; polyhydroxyalkanoates; bacterial cellulose; bioethanol
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Ana Maria Rebelo Barreto Xavier

CICECO – Aveiro Institute of Materials, Chemistry Department, University of Aveiro, Campus Universitário de Santiago, Aveiro, Portugal Country: Portugal
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Interests: biorefinery; bioprocess of renewable resources for new products; bioethanol and biopolymers production; potentialities of hardwood spent sulfite liquor; laccase production, biocatalyses and immobilization; ligninolytic activity in pulp and paper industry: Bleaching processes and effluent cleaning processes

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The world dependence on oil can generate geopolitical instability in producing countries that often results in the oscillation of its prices. Additionally, it can contribute to an increase in the economic vulnerability of non-producing countries. Moreover, the exploitation and transformation of oil, and the recalcitrance of many of its derivate products, signify an extended list of environmental problems. For these reasons, the number of research works that search for alternatives to oil as source of fuels, chemicals, and materials is increasing exponentially. Researchers are looking for new processes and raw materials that can provide the same products, or at least similar, to those obtained from oil.

In the last few decades, many microorganisms were found to be able to produce molecules that can be obtained from oil or at least substitute those in the same applications. These molecules include ethanol, butanol, lactic and succinic acids, or polyhydroxyalkanoates. Even molecules that were not produced naturally were successfully produced by microorganisms with the help of genetic engineering. Microorganisms produce these compounds using carbohydrates or organic acids as substrates. Raw materials containing carbohydrates or organic acids can be found in nature (e.g., vegetable biomass) or result from human activities (e.g., industrial wastes and sub-products). These raw materials have the advantage of being renewable and their transformation into added-value products can also signify a solution of an environmental problem.

This Special Issue intends to cover the latest and most innovative developments of this field, including all types of producing microorganisms—bacteria, fungi, and yeasts. Topics will include: The use of new raw materials; screening and isolation of novel producers; metabolic engineering for improving the production or for expanding the product range to non-endogenous producers; bioprocess design.

Prof. Dr. Luísa Seuanes Serafim
Prof. Dr. Ana Maria Rebelo Barreto Xavier
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Fermentation is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) is waived for well-prepared manuscripts submitted to this issue. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • renewable resources
  • added-value products
  • microbial production
  • biorefineries
  • biofuels
  • biopolymers
  • bio-based products

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Impact of Organic Acids Supplementation to Hardwood Spent Sulfite Liquor as Substrate for the Selection of Polyhydroxyalkanoates-Producing Organisms
Fermentation 2018, 4(3), 58; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation4030058
Received: 12 July 2018 / Revised: 18 July 2018 / Accepted: 18 July 2018 / Published: 24 July 2018
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Abstract
The effectiveness of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) production process from a waste stream is determined by the selection of a suitable mixed microbial culture (MMC). In this work, a feedstock from the paper industry, hardwood spent sulfite liquor (HSSL), supplemented with short-chain organic acids (SCOAs)
[...] Read more.
The effectiveness of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) production process from a waste stream is determined by the selection of a suitable mixed microbial culture (MMC). In this work, a feedstock from the paper industry, hardwood spent sulfite liquor (HSSL), supplemented with short-chain organic acids (SCOAs) to simulate a fermented effluent, was used as substrate to enrich a MMC in PHA-storing microorganisms. A stable culture was quickly established, and during the accumulation step the selected MMC reached a maximum PHA content of 34.6% (3HB:3HV-76:24). The bacterial community was analyzed through FISH analysis. Bacteria belonging to the four main classes were identified: Betaproteobacteria (44.7 ± 2.7%), Alphaproteobacteria (13.6 ± 1.3%) and Gammaproteobacteria (2.40 ± 1.1%) and Bacteroidetes (9.20 ± 3.8%). Inside the Betaproteobacteria class, Acidovorax (71%) was the dominant genus. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microbial Production of Added-value Products from Renewable Resources)
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Open AccessArticle Effect of Sludge Concentration and Crude Glycerol Matrix as a Substrate on the Production of Single-Cell Oil by Oleaginous Yeast Yarrowia lipolytica SKY7
Fermentation 2018, 4(2), 24; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation4020024
Received: 28 February 2018 / Revised: 24 March 2018 / Accepted: 29 March 2018 / Published: 2 April 2018
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Abstract
The disposal of excess crude glycerol produced by the booming biodiesel industry and wastewater sludge solid waste has become a severe problem, and alternate routes of use and valorization of these waste byproducts are needed. The use of cheaply available wastewater sludge solids
[...] Read more.
The disposal of excess crude glycerol produced by the booming biodiesel industry and wastewater sludge solid waste has become a severe problem, and alternate routes of use and valorization of these waste byproducts are needed. The use of cheaply available wastewater sludge solids in fermentation media is very much desirable to reduce the cost of production. The strains of Yarrowia lipolytica can assimilate a wide array of waste substrates, such as crude glycerol, waste cooking oil, starch wastewater, and cellulosic. This study optimized the concentration of wastewater sludge solids (5–35 g/L) to be used with crude glycerol in fermentation media to produce microbial oil as feedstock for biodiesel production. The results indicated that 20 g/L of sludge solids with 40 g/L of crude glycerol resulted in highest lipid content of 29.35% in 96 h. Further, assuming wet extraction of lipids, it was found that at least 11.2% or higher lipid content is required for this process to have an overall positive net solid waste reduction. Insignificant inhibition was observed by the crude glycerol used in this study as compared to pure glycerol, which proves it to be an adequate source of carbon substrate for lipid production. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microbial Production of Added-value Products from Renewable Resources)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle The Effect of pH and Temperature on Arachidonic Acid Production by Glycerol-Grown Mortierella alpina NRRL-A-10995
Fermentation 2018, 4(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation4010017
Received: 9 February 2018 / Revised: 2 March 2018 / Accepted: 4 March 2018 / Published: 12 March 2018
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Abstract
Arachidonic acid (AA) has a wide range of applications in medicine, pharmacology, diet, infant nutrition, and agriculture, due to its unique biological properties. The microbiological processes involved in AA production usually require carbohydrate substrates. In this paper, we propose a method for AA
[...] Read more.
Arachidonic acid (AA) has a wide range of applications in medicine, pharmacology, diet, infant nutrition, and agriculture, due to its unique biological properties. The microbiological processes involved in AA production usually require carbohydrate substrates. In this paper, we propose a method for AA production from glycerol, an inexpensive and renewable carbon substrate that is produced by the fungal strain, Mortierella alpina NRRL-A-10995. Our experimental results showed that the optimum pH values required for fungal growth and the production of lipids and AA were different and depended on the growth phase of the fungus. The AA production was shown to be extremely sensitive to acidic pH values and was completely inhibited at a pH of 3.0. The optimum temperature for AA production was 20–22 °C. Continuous cultivation of M. alpina occurred in a glycerol-containing medium, and growth limitations were implemented through the addition of nitrogen and the selection of optimal conditions (pH 6.0, 20 °C). This ensured that active AA production occurred (25.2% of lipids and 3.1% of biomass), with the product yield from the consumed glycerol being 1.6% by mass and 3.4% by energy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microbial Production of Added-value Products from Renewable Resources)
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Open AccessArticle Mitigation of Volatile Fatty Acid Build-Up by the Use of Soft Carbon Felt Electrodes: Evaluation of Anaerobic Digestion in Acidic Conditions
Received: 15 December 2017 / Revised: 26 December 2017 / Accepted: 3 January 2018 / Published: 4 January 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (2583 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Anaerobic digestion and bioelectrochemical systems have great potential to recover energy from waste streams and help overcome common hurdles associated with this process, as integrated technologies. In this study, the benefit of integrating an electrogen-enriched bioanode in a batch anaerobic digester was explored
[...] Read more.
Anaerobic digestion and bioelectrochemical systems have great potential to recover energy from waste streams and help overcome common hurdles associated with this process, as integrated technologies. In this study, the benefit of integrating an electrogen-enriched bioanode in a batch anaerobic digester was explored under ambient temperature conditions associated with organic overloading and reactor acidity. An increase in CH4 production was observed in the electrode-containing reactors (0.56 L CH4 kgVS−1 h−1) in comparison with the conventional anaerobic digester (0.14 L CH4 kgVS−1 h−1) during the initial stages of operation. In addition, the mere presence of electrodes operating in open circuit mode resulted in a delay in volatile fatty acid (VFA) build-up. This seems to be associated with the enhancement in VFA consumption due to biomass proliferation on the electrode surface, rather than on electrochemical activity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microbial Production of Added-value Products from Renewable Resources)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Fumaric Acid Production: A Biorefinery Perspective
Fermentation 2018, 4(2), 33; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation4020033
Received: 21 March 2018 / Revised: 2 May 2018 / Accepted: 4 May 2018 / Published: 7 May 2018
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Abstract
The increasing scarcity of fossil raw materials, together with the need to develop new processes and technology based on renewable sources, and the need to dispose of an increasing amount of biomass-derived waste, have boosted the concept of biorefineries. Both 1G and 2G
[...] Read more.
The increasing scarcity of fossil raw materials, together with the need to develop new processes and technology based on renewable sources, and the need to dispose of an increasing amount of biomass-derived waste, have boosted the concept of biorefineries. Both 1G and 2G biorefineries are focused on the obtention of biofuels, chemicals, materials, food and feed from biomass, a renewable resource. Fumaric acid, and most compounds involved in the Kreb cycle, are considered key platform chemicals, not only for being acidulants and additives in the food industry, but also for their prospective use as monomers. This review is focused on the biotechnological processes based on fungi, mainly of the Rhizopus genus, whose main product is fumaric acid, on the process conditions, the bioreactors and modes of operation and on the purification of the acid once it is produced. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microbial Production of Added-value Products from Renewable Resources)
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview A Review on Established and Emerging Fermentation Schemes for Microbial Production of Polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) Biopolyesters
Fermentation 2018, 4(2), 30; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation4020030
Received: 21 March 2018 / Revised: 18 April 2018 / Accepted: 20 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (1187 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) are microbial biopolyesters utilized as “green plastics”. Their production under controlled conditions resorts to bioreactors operated in different modes. Because PHA biosynthesis constitutes a multiphase process, both feeding strategy and bioreactor operation mode need smart adaptation. Traditional PHA production setups based
[...] Read more.
Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) are microbial biopolyesters utilized as “green plastics”. Their production under controlled conditions resorts to bioreactors operated in different modes. Because PHA biosynthesis constitutes a multiphase process, both feeding strategy and bioreactor operation mode need smart adaptation. Traditional PHA production setups based on batch, repeated batch, fed-batch or cyclic fed-batch processes are often limited in productivity, or display insufficient controllability of polyester composition. For highly diluted substrate streams like is the case of (agro) industrial waste streams, fed-batch enhanced by cell recycling has recently been reported as a viable tool to increase volumetric productivity. As an emerging trend, continuous fermentation processes in single-, two- and multi-stage setups are reported, which bring the kinetics of both microbial growth and PHA accumulation into agreement with process engineering and allow tailoring PHA’s molecular structure. Moreover, we currently witness an increasing number of CO2-based PHA production processes using cyanobacteria; these light-driven processes resort to photobioreactors similar to those used for microalgae cultivation and can be operated both discontinuously and continuously. This development is parallel to the emerging use of methane and syngas as abundantly available gaseous substrates, which also calls for bioreactor systems with optimized gas transfer. The review sheds light on the challenges of diverse PHA production processes in different bioreactor types and operational regimes using miscellaneous microbial production strains such as extremophilic Archaea, chemoheterotrophic eubacteria and phototrophic cyanobacteria. Particular emphasis is dedicated to the limitations and promises of different bioreactor–strain combinations and to efforts devoted to upscaling these processes to industrially relevant scales. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microbial Production of Added-value Products from Renewable Resources)
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title:  Mathematical Modeling of the Batch and Continuous Packed-Bed Fermentation of Butanol and Isopropanol by Clostridium beijerinckii
Authors: Daira Aragon, Juan F. Murcia-Palacios, Shyam Chattanathan, Xuan Li, and Ying Yang

Abstract: Bio-butanol synthesis during fermentation of glucose by immobilized Clostridium beijerinckii optonii has been mathematically modeled in this study. To begin, batch fermentation process was modeled to fit the batch experimental data for two different initial substrate concentrations – 30 g L-1 and 50 g L-1. This was followed by modeling continuous-flow fermentation process using experimental data that has already been published. The proposed models were developed in Matlab. The batch fermentation model include the intermediates butyric and acetic acid, and the two major products butanol and isopropanol. The continuous-flow fermentation model incorporates reaction kinetics, fluid dynamics (given by advection-dispersion equation) and mass transfer effects (determined using Sherwood, Reynold’s and Schimdt’s numbers). 

Title: Modelling and dynamic optimization of semi-batch glycerol to succinic acid bio-reactors
Author: Ta-Chen Lin
Abstract: A potential method for the valorization of the main by-product of biodiesel production, i.e. crude glycerol, is the biological conversion of glycerol to succinic acid, a top added-value material. However, its unstructured biological kinetics often involves the severe impact of the substrate and product inhibitions, which leads to the design of the semi-batch bio-reactors, to optimize substrate inhibitions.
      The microorganism unstructured kinetics model employed here arising from Actinobacillus succinogenes in batch bioreactors where glycerol was used as the sole carbon source. Base on the experimental data in the literature, product inhibitions terms were added not only to specific growth rate but also to rate of production. Bio-kinetic parameters of the unstructured model were estimated by minimizing the non-linear weighted sum of squared difference between experimental and predicted state values, which shows significant improve compared to the previous models in the literature.
       The dynamic optimization results indicate that, with the same quantity of glycerol used in batch bioreactors, the optimized substrate feeding profile and final reaction times of semi-batch process could improve the performance index of simulated product yield, final succinate concentration and productivity individually.

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