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Metabolic engineering of thermophilic

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2,3‐Butanediol is an important compound that can be used in many areas, especially as a platform chemical and liquid fuel. But traditional 2,3‐butanediol producing microorganisms, such as Klebsiella pneumonia and K. xoytoca, are pathogens and they can only ferment sugars at 37°C. Here, we reported a newly developed Bacillus licheniformis. A protoplast transformation system was developed and optimized for this organism. With this transformation method, a marker‐less gene deletion protocol was successfully used to knock out the ldh gene of B. licheniformis BL1 and BL3. BL1 was isolated earlier from soil for lactate production and it was further evolved to BL3 for xylose utilization. Combined with pH and aeration control, ldh mutant BL5 and BL8 can efficiently ferment glucose and xylose to D‐(−) 2,3‐butanediol at 50°C, pH 5.0. For glucose and xylose, the specific 2,3‐butanediol productivities are 29.4 and 26.1 mM/h, respectively. The yield is 0.73 mol/mol for BL8 in xylose and 0.9 mol/mol for BL5 and BL8 in glucose. The D‐(−) 2,3‐butanediol optical purity is more than 98%. As far as we know, this is the first reported high temperature butanediol producer to match the simultaneous saccharification and fermentation conditions. Therefore, it has potential to further lower butanediol producing cost with low cost lignocellulosic biomass in the near future. Biotechnol. Bioeng. 2012; 109:1610–1621. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Biochemical Engineering, School of Chemical Engineering and Technology, Tianjin University, Tianjin, People's Republic of China 2: Department of Microbiology and Cell Science, University of Florida, Box 110700, Gainesville, Florida 32611; telephone: 352-273-0635;, Fax: 352-392-5922

Publication date: July 1, 2012

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