There is an increased interest in using thermophilic bacteria for the production of bioethanol from complex lignocellulosic biomass due to their higher operating temperatures and broad substrate range. This review focuses upon the main genera of thermophilic anaerobes known to produce ethanol, their physiology, and the relevance of various environmental factors on ethanol yields including the partial pressure of hydrogen, ethanol tolerance, pH and substrate inhibition. Additionally, recent development in evolutionary adaptation and genetic engineering of thermophilic bacteria is highlighted. Recent developments in advanced process techniques used for ethanol production are reviewed with an emphasis on the advantages of using thermophilic bacteria in process strategies including separate saccharification and fermentation, simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF), and consolidated bioprocessing (CBP).
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited