The demand for natural lactone gamma-decalactone (GDL) has increased in the fields of food and cosmetic products. However, low productivity during bioprocessing limits its industrial production. In this study, a novel composite porous cell carrier, bacterial cellulose-alginate (BC-ALG), was used for long-term biotransformation and production of GDL. The effects of this carrier on biotransformation and related mechanisms were investigated. BC-ALG carriers showed improved mechanical strength over ALG carriers, with their internal embedded cell pattern changed to an interconnected porous structure. In five repeated-batch biotransformation experiments, the maximum concentration of GDL obtained in culture with BC-ALG carriers was 8.37 g/L, approximately 3.7 times higher than that from the medium with an ALG carrier alone. The result indicated that multiple hydrogen bonding interactions at the interface between BC and ALG contributed to the compatibility and stability of BC-ALG carriers. On the basis of the above results, the BC-ALG composite carrier can be considered ideal for immobilisation of cells for the production of GDL on an industrial scale, and has the potential to be utilised in other biological processes.
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