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Microbial Production of 1,3-Propanediol

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The introduction of economic production processes for 1,3-propanediol is a success story for the creation of a new market for a (bulk) chemical. The compound and its favorable properties have long been known; also the fermentation of glycerol to 1,3-propanediol had been described more than 120 years ago. Nevertheless, the product remained a specialty chemical until recently, when two new processes were introduced, providing 1,3-propanediol at a competitive price. Remarkably, one of the processes is in the field of white biotechnology and based on microbial fermentation, converting a renewable carbon source into a bulk chemical.

This review covers the most important patents that led to the commercialization of bio-based 1,3-propanediol. Furthermore, some of the recent developments towards a sustainable industry are addressed. Similar questions arise for a variety of products if they are to be produced bio-based in large scale. However, special emphasis is given to 1,3- propanediol production.

Keywords: 1,3-Propanediol; bio-based polymer; biorefinery; bulk chemical; industrial microbiology; reducing power; white biotechnology

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: November 1, 2008

More about this publication?
  • Recent Patents on Biotechnology publishes review articles by experts on recent patents on biotechnology. A selection of important and recent patents on biotechnology is also included in the journal. The journal is essential reading for all researchers involved in all fields of biotechnology.

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