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J Microbiol Biotechnol. 2016 Sep 28;26(9):1557-65. doi: 10.4014/jmb.1603.03073.

Itaconic and Fumaric Acid Production from Biomass Hydrolysates by Aspergillus Strains.

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BioTeam/ICPEES-ESBS, UMR CNRS 7515, Université de Strasbourg, 67412 Illkirch Cedex, France.
BioTeam/ICPEES-ECPM, UMR CNRS 7515, Université de Strasbourg, 67087 Strasbourg, Cedex 2, France.
CAMBA/IPHC, UMR 7178, Faculté de Pharmacie, Université de Strasbourg, 67400 Illkirch Cedex, France.


Itaconic acid (IA) is a dicarboxylic acid included in the US Department of Energy's (DOE) 2004 list of the most promising chemical platforms derived from sugars. IA is produced industrially using liquid-state fermentation (LSF) by Aspergillus terreus with glucose as the carbon source. To utilize IA production in renewable resource-based biorefinery, the present study investigated the use of lignocellulosic biomass as a carbon source for LSF. We also investigated the production of fumaric acid (FA), which is also on the DOE's list. FA is a primary metabolite, whereas IA is a secondary metabolite and requires the enzyme cis-aconitate decarboxylase for its production. Two lignocellulosic biomasses (wheat bran and corn cobs) were tested for fungal fermentation. Liquid hydrolysates obtained after acid or enzymatic treatment were used in LSF. We show that each treatment resulted in different concentrations of sugars, metals, or inhibitors. Furthermore, different acid yields (IA and FA) were obtained depending on which of the four Aspergillus strains tested were employed. The maximum FA yield was obtained when A. terreus was used for LSF of corn cob hydrolysate (1.9% total glucose); whereas an IA yield of 0.14% was obtained by LSF of corn cob hydrolysates by A. oryzae.


Lignocellulosic biomass; biomass valorization; fumaric; itaconic; liquid-state fermentation

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