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Biomass-Derived Production of Itaconic Acid as a Building Block in Specialty Polymers

1
Institute of Life Sciences, University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine, Calea Mănăştur 3-5, 400372 Cluj-Napoca, Romania
2
Faculty of Food Science and Technology, Institute of Life Sciences, University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine of Cluj-Napoca, Calea Mănăștur 3-5, 400372 Cluj-Napoca, Romania
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Polymers 2019, 11(6), 1035; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym11061035
Received: 10 May 2019 / Revised: 6 June 2019 / Accepted: 7 June 2019 / Published: 11 June 2019
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Abstract

Biomass, the only source of renewable organic carbon on Earth, offers an efficient substrate for bio-based organic acid production as an alternative to the leading petrochemical industry based on non-renewable resources. Itaconic acid (IA) is one of the most important organic acids that can be obtained from lignocellulose biomass. IA, a 5-C dicarboxylic acid, is a promising platform chemical with extensive applications; therefore, it is included in the top 12 building block chemicals by the US Department of Energy. Biotechnologically, IA production can take place through fermentation with fungi like Aspergillus terreus and Ustilago maydis strains or with metabolically engineered bacteria like Escherichia coli and Corynebacterium glutamicum. Bio-based IA represents a feasible substitute for petrochemically produced acrylic acid, paints, varnishes, biodegradable polymers, and other different organic compounds. IA and its derivatives, due to their trifunctional structure, support the synthesis of a wide range of innovative polymers through crosslinking, with applications in special hydrogels for water decontamination, targeted drug delivery (especially in cancer treatment), smart nanohydrogels in food applications, coatings, and elastomers. The present review summarizes the latest research regarding major IA production pathways, metabolic engineering procedures, and the synthesis and applications of novel polymeric materials. View Full-Text
Keywords: itaconic acid; biotechnology; biosynthetic pathways; Aspergillus terreus; polymers; hydrogels; drug delivery itaconic acid; biotechnology; biosynthetic pathways; Aspergillus terreus; polymers; hydrogels; drug delivery
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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 (CC BY 4.0).
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Teleky, B.-E.; Vodnar, D.C. Biomass-Derived Production of Itaconic Acid as a Building Block in Specialty Polymers. Polymers 2019, 11, 1035.

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