Conversion of Xylose from Birch Hemicellulose Hydrolysate to 2,3-Butanediol with Bacillus vallismortis
Biotechnologically produced 2,3-butanediol (2,3-BDO) is a potential starting material for industrial bulk chemicals, such as butadiene or methyl ethyl ketone, which are currently produced from fossil feedstocks. So far, the highest 2,3-BDO concentrations have been obtained with risk class 2 microorganisms and pure glucose as substrate. However, as glucose stays in competition to food and feed industries, a lot of effort has been done in the last years finding efficient alternative substrates. Thereby xylose from hydrolysed wood hemicelluloses is a promising substrate for the production of 2,3-BDO. The risk class 1 microorganism Bacillus vallismortis strain was identified as a very promising 2,3-BDO producer. The strain is able to utilize xylose almost in the same manner as glucose. B. vallismortis is less prone to common inhibiting compounds in lignocellulosic extracts/hydrolysates. When using a concentrated hemicellulose fraction from birch wood hydrolysate, which was produced with ultrafiltration and after which the acetate concentration was reduced, a yield of 0.43 g g−1 was achieved and the xylose consumption and the 2,3-BDO production is basically the same as using pure xylose.