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Bioresour Technol. 2013 Sep;144:44-9. doi: 10.1016/j.biortech.2013.06.098. Epub 2013 Jul 2.

Construction and evaluation of an exopolysaccharide-producing engineered bacterial strain by protoplast fusion for microbial enhanced oil recovery.

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State Key Laboratory of Heavy Oil Processing, Faculty of Chemical Engineering, China University of Petroleum, Beijing 102249, PR China.


Enterobacter cloacae strain JD, which produces water-insoluble biopolymers at optimal temperature of 30°C, and a thermophilic Geobacillus strain were used to construct an engineered strain for exopolysaccharide production at high temperatures by protoplast fusion. The obtained fusant strain ZR3 produced exopolysaccharides at up to 45°C with optimal growth temperature at 35°C. The fusant produced exopolysaccharides of approximately 7.5 g/L or more at pH between 7.0 and 9.0. The feasibility of the enhancement of crude oil recovery with the fusant was tested in a sand-packed column at 40°C. The results demonstrated that bioaugmentation of the fusant was promising approach for MEOR. Mass growth of the fusant was confirmed in fermentor tests.


Crude oil; Fusant; Microbial enhanced oil recovery (MEOR); Protoplast fusion; Water-insoluble exopolysaccharide

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