Industrial side streams as sustainable substrates for microbial production of poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB)

World J Microbiol Biotechnol. 2022 Oct 19;38(12):238. doi: 10.1007/s11274-022-03416-z.

ABSTRACT

Poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) is a microbially produced biopolymer that is emerging as a propitious alternative to petroleum-based plastics owing to its biodegradable and biocompatible properties. However, to date, the relatively high costs related to the PHB production process are hampering its widespread commercialization. Since feedstock costs add up to half of the total production costs, ample research has been focusing on the use of inexpensive industrial side streams as carbon sources. While various industrial side streams such as second-generation carbohydrates, lignocellulose, lipids, and glycerol have been extensively investigated in liquid fermentation processes, also gaseous sources, including carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, and methane, are gaining attention as substrates for gas fermentation. In addition, recent studies have investigated two-stage processes to convert waste gases into PHB via organic acids or alcohols. In this review, a variety of different industrial side streams are discussed as more sustainable and economical carbon sources for microbial PHB production. In particular, a comprehensive overview of recent developments and remaining challenges in fermentation strategies using these feedstocks is provided, considering technical, environmental, and economic aspects to shed light on their industrial feasibility. As such, this review aims to contribute to the global shift towards a zero-waste bio-economy and more sustainable materials.

PMID:36260135 | PMC:PMC9581835 | DOI:10.1007/s11274-022-03416-z

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