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Biotechnol Adv. 2009 Nov-Dec;27(6):715-25. doi: 10.1016/j.biotechadv.2009.05.002. Epub 2009 May 13.

Biotechnological production of 2,3-butanediol--current state and prospects.

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Poznan University of Life Sciences, Department of Biotechnology and Food Microbiology, Wojska Polskiego 48, 60-627 Poznań, Poland.


Biotechnological production of 2,3-butanediol (hereafter referred to as 2,3-BD) from wastes and excessive biomass is a promising and attractive alternative for traditional chemical synthesis. In the face of scarcity of fossil fuel supplies the bio-based process is receiving a significant interest, since 2,3-BD may have multiple practical applications (e.g. production of synthetic rubber, plasticizers, fumigants, as an antifreeze agent, fuel additive, octane booster, and many others). Although the 2,3-BD pathway is well known, microorganisms able to ferment biomass to 2,3-BD have been isolated and described, and attempts of pilot scale production of this compound were made, still much has to be done in order to achieve desired profitability. This review summarizes hitherto gained knowledge and experience in biotechnological production of 2,3-BD, sources of biomass used, employed microorganisms both wild type and genetically improved strains, as well as operating conditions applied.

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