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Appl Biochem Biotechnol. 2008 Mar;145(1-3):39-51. doi: 10.1007/s12010-007-8038-6. Epub 2007 Sep 25.

Effects of oxygen limitation on xylose fermentation, intracellular metabolites, and key enzymes of Neurospora crassa AS3.1602.

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  • 1State Key Lab of Microbial Technology, Shandong University, Jinan, China.


The effects of oxygen limitation on xylose fermentation of Neurospora crassa AS3.1602 were studied using batch cultures. The maximum yield of ethanol was 0.34 g/g at oxygen transfer rate (OTR) of 8.4 mmol/L.h. The maximum yield of xylitol was 0.33 g/g at OTR of 5.1 mmol/L.h. Oxygen limitation greatly affected mycelia growth and xylitol and ethanol productions. The specific growth rate (micro) decreased 82% from 0.045 to 0.008 h(-1) when OTR changed from 12.6 to 8.4 mmol/L.h. Intracellular metabolites of the pentose phosphate pathway, glycolysis, and tricarboxylic acid cycle were determined at various OTRs. Concentrations of most intracellular metabolites decreased with the increase in oxygen limitation. Intracellular enzyme activities of xylose reductase, xylitol dehydrogenase, and xylulokinase, the first three enzymes in xylose metabolic pathway, decreased with the increase in oxygen limitation, resulting in the decreased xylose uptake rate. Under all tested conditions, transaldolase and transketolase activities always maintained at low levels, indicating a great control on xylose metabolism. The enzyme of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase played a major role in NADPH regeneration, and its activity decreased remarkably with the increase in oxygen limitation.

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