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More efficient production of biofuels from waste with the help of modified yeasts
Date:8/29/2013

nable. One of these was the fact that no one single strain of yeast was capable of converting all of the sugars in the biomass into ethanol. The pentose sugars, in particular, posed a big problem. In recent years, a great deal of progress has been made with genetically modified yeast strains that are also able to ferment pentose sugars, but these laboratory strains did not prove to be entirely suitable for industrial fermentation processes.

Mekonnen Demeke and Johan Thevelein (VIB/KU Leuven) have now cleared this obstacle out of the way. They did this by changing the DNA of the best industrial strains of yeast used for bio-ethanol production in such a way that the modified yeast strains were also able to very easily ferment pentose sugars while at the same time becoming even more robust than they were. Their new yeast strains have also proved to efficiently and quickly ferment various types of biomass into bio-ethanol in real conditions, outside of the lab. The interest in this new strain from the industry itself is great, because the efficiency with which these yeast strains make bio-ethanol from waste is unprecedented.


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Contact: Sooike Stoops
info@vib.be
32-924-46611
VIB (the Flanders Institute for Biotechnology)
Source:Eurekalert

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