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Curr Opin Biotechnol. 2015 Apr;32:104-112. doi: 10.1016/j.copbio.2014.11.024. Epub 2014 Dec 30.

Enhancing cellulose utilization for fuels and chemicals by genetic modification of plant cell wall architecture.

Author information

1
Department of Microbiology & Cell Science, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, United States; University of Florida Genetics Institute, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, United States; Graduate Program in Plant Molecular & Cellular Biology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, United States. Electronic address: wev@ufl.edu.
2
University of Florida Genetics Institute, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, United States; Graduate Program in Plant Molecular & Cellular Biology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, United States.

Abstract

Cellulose from plant biomass can serve as a sustainable feedstock for fuels, chemicals and polymers that are currently produced from petroleum. In order to enhance economic feasibility, the efficiency of cell wall deconstruction needs to be enhanced. With the use of genetic and biotechnological approaches cell wall composition can be modified in such a way that interactions between the major cell wall polymers—cellulose, hemicellulosic polysaccharides and lignin—are altered. Some of the resulting plants are compromised in their growth and development, but this may be caused in part by the plant's overcompensation for metabolic perturbances. In other cases novel structures have been introduced in the cell wall without negative effects. The first field studies with engineered bioenergy crops look promising, while detailed structural analyses of cellulose synthase offer new opportunities to modify cellulose itself.

PMID:
25531269
DOI:
10.1016/j.copbio.2014.11.024
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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