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Appl Biochem Biotechnol. 1997 Spring;63-65:117-27.

Production of Xylitol from D-xylose by Debaryomyces hansenii.

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  • 1Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Vigo (Campus Orense), Las Lagunas, 32004 Orense, Spain.


Xylitol, a naturally occurring five-carbon sugar alcohol, can be produced from D-xylose through microbial hydrogenation. Xylitol has found increasing use in the food industries, especially in confectionary. It is the only so-called "second-generation polyol sweeteners" that is allowed to have the specific health claims in some world markets. In this study, the effect of cell density on the xylitol production by the yeast Debaryomyces hansenii NRRL Upsilon-7426 from D-xylose under microaerobic conditions was examined. The rate of xylitol production increased with increasing yeast cell density to 3 g/L. Beyond this amount there was no increase in the xylitol production with increasing cell density. The optimal pH range for xylitol production was between 4.5 and 5.5. The optimal temperature was between 28 and 37 degrees C, and the optimal shaking speed was 300 rpm. The rate of xylitol production increased linearly with increasing initial xylose concentration. A high concentration of xylose (279 g/L) was converted rapidly and efficiently to produce xylitol with a product concentration of 221 g/L was reached after 48 h of incubation under optimum conditions.

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