Bioenergy+_2+2010 - Bioenergy research is very active these...

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Unformatted text preview: Bioenergy research is very active these days JBEI: Joint Bioenergy Institute Lawrence Berkeley National Labs + Sandia National Laboratories Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory University of California campuses of Berkeley and Davis Carnegie Institution for Science. Amyris, Inc. 5885 Hollis Street, Ste. 100 Emeryville, CA 94608 Many questions need to be answered What are the tradeoffs between environmental effects of climate change and cultivation of land for biofuels? Displacement of food crops What are the probable effects on poor people and social equity worldwide? What policies are necessary to prevent undesirable social or economic effects around the world? Science 324:1019 (2009) What do we do with the biomass? Structures of Cellulose and Hemicelluloses Glucose (hexose) Xylose (pentose) Plant tissues are structurally and chemically complex Lignin occludes polysaccharides Lignin Hemicellulose Cellulose The cellulose fibers must be exposed for cellulases to degrade them Current process of ethanol production from lignocellulose From: Breaking the Biological Barriers to Cellulosic Ethanol Plant materials need to be subjected to harsh pre-treatment conditions to release cellulose and hemicellulose from lignin before cellulase treatment and subsequent fermentation to ethanol Changes in plant substrates will reduce need for pre-treatment and combination of enzymatic polymer degradation and ethanolic fermentation capabilities in single microbes will simplify/cheapen ethanol production How do we improve the process?- Engineer plants with decreased lignin- Combine saccharification and fermentation abilities- Co-fermentation of C-5 (xylose) and C-6 (glucose) sugars- Discover and improve natural enzymes Both Xylose catabolism and Ethanol production can be added to bacteria - Example E. coli glucose Recombinant yeast engineered to consume both glucose and xylose and produce ethanol The Issue: Enzymes now used for degradation (saccharification) of plant materials come from cultured bacteria and fungi MOST bacteria and fungi in nature are unculturable BUT they may harbor more effective enzymes How do you find such enzymes and their genes? Original metagenomics...
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Bioenergy+_2+2010 - Bioenergy research is very active these...

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