Navigation Links
New microbial genetic system dissects biomass to biofuel conversion
Date:6/11/2010

MADISON A research team at the DOE Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center (GLBRC) has developed a powerful new tool that promises to unlock the secrets of biomass degradation, a critical step in the development of cost-effective cellulosic biofuels. The details of this method were published online on June 11 in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology.

Fulfilling the promise of cellulosic biofuels requires developing efficient strategies to extract sugar molecules in biomass polymers like cellulose. Microorganisms such as bacteria and fungi are capable of converting biomass to simple sugars, but historically have been difficult to study using genetic approaches.

A breakthrough by a team of University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers at the GLBRC has made it possible to perform genetic analysis on Cellvibrio japonicus, a promising bacterium that has long been known to convert biomass to sugars. Using a technique called vector integration, the team has developed a method to generate a mutation in any gene within the organism.

As a test of the technique, the team constructed a mutation that inactivated a key component of a protein complex called a Type II Secretion System, and the disruption of this system prevented the bacterium from efficiently converting biomass into sugars. This proves for the first time that Cellvibrio uses the Type II Secretion System to secrete key enzymes for breakdown of biomass polymerase, thus providing key insight into how this bacterium obtains sugars from biomass.

"Realizing the promise of cellulosic biofuels requires identifying more efficient methods of releasing sugars from biomass", says GLBRC associate scientist David Keating, who led the team. "This new genetic method will allow us to understand how bacteria carry out this conversion, which should provide new avenues for improving the industrial process."

Plant cell wall deconstruction is a very complex process that requires a large number of enzymes, many with overlapping specificities, says Professor and Eminent Scholar in Bioenergy Harry Gilbert, of the University of Georgia's Complex Carbohydrate Research Center.

"As genetic systems for many bacteria that orchestrate this process have not been developed, the use of null mutations (inactivating specific genes) to explore the functional significance of specific enzymes has not been possible," says Gilbert. "Keating's group has provided the ability to do that inactivate specific genes in Cellvibrio japonicus which displays an extensive plant cell wall degrading apparatus. This enables you to ask critical biological questions about how the system is regulated and how the enzymes work together to degrade this hugely complex molecule. This is a substantial and important development in the field."


'/>"/>

Contact: David Keating
dkeating@glbrc.wisc.edu
608-890-2547
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. DOE JGI produces new QC tool for microbial genomes
2. Microbial answer to plastic pollution?
3. New tool in the fight against mosquito-borne disease: A microbial mosquito net
4. UBC researchers find key microbial indicator of ocean health
5. Model microbial community for studying expanding dead zones characterized
6. TAXIS Pharmaceuticals licenses novel antimicrobial technology from Rutgers and UMDNJ
7. Reviews of microbial gene language published in special issue of Trends in Microbiology
8. Exploring standards to advance microbial genomics
9. MIT reels in RNA surprise with microbial ocean catch
10. Illinois Soil Nitrogen Test measures microbial nitrogen
11. Earths highest known microbial systems fueled by volcanic gases
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/12/2016)... WearablesResearch.com , a brand of Troubadour Research & ... Q1 wave of its quarterly wearables survey. A particular ... a program where they would receive discounts for sharing ... "We were surprised to see that so many ... CEO of Troubadour Research, "primarily because there are segments ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... and LONDON , ... Finacle, part of EdgeVerve Systems, a product subsidiary ... Onegini today announced a partnership to integrate the ...      (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20151104/283829LOGO ) ... provide their customers enhanced security to access and ...
(Date:4/14/2016)... , April 14, 2016 ... Malware Detection, today announced the appointment of Eyal ... new role. Goldwerger,s leadership appointment comes at ... heels of the deployment of its platform at several ... biometric technology, which discerns unique cognitive and physiological factors, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/26/2016)... Mich. , May 26, 2016  Agriculture nutrients ... Des Moines, Iowa is running their ... Lake Erie and coastal regions ... key to preventing this widespread issue. NECi ... Upper Peninsula, developed a new, easy to ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... , May 26, 2016 Q BioMed ... it will be a featured presenter at the 5th Annual ... New York City at the Grand Hyatt ... , Q BioMed Inc. CEO, is scheduled to begin at ... the company,s business strategy, recent developments and outline milestones for ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... May 26, 2016 , ... After several ... Inc. at the City of Knowledge in Panama, a 6 year-old Duchenne’s ... the US earlier this year following FDA approval of a second application for ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... 26, 2016 , ... FireflySci has been manufacturing quartz and ... over the globe. Their cute firefly logo has been spreading to more and ... spectrophotometer calibration standards that never require recalibration. These revolutionary standards have changed ...
Breaking Biology Technology: