Combination of ensiling and fungal delignification as effective wheat straw pretreatment

Sune T. Thomsen, Jorge E. G. Londono, Morten Ambye-Jensen, Stefan Heiske, Zsófia Kádár, Anne S. Meyer

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Abstract

Background: Utilization of lignocellulosic feedstocks for bioenergy production in developing countries demands competitive but low-tech conversion routes. White-rot fungi (WRF) inoculation and ensiling are two methods previously investigated for low-tech pretreatment of biomasses such as wheat straw (WS). This study was undertaken to assess whether a combination of forced ensiling with Lactobacillus buchneri and WRF treatment using a low cellulase fungus, Ceriporiopsis subvermispora, could produce a relevant pretreatment effect on WS for bioethanol and biogas production. Results: A combination of the ensiling and WRF treatment induced efficient pretreatment of WS by reducing lignin content and increasing enzymatic sugar release, thereby enabling an ethanol yield of 66 % of the theoretical max on the WS glucan, i.e. a yield comparable to yields obtained with high-tech, large-scale pretreatment methods. The pretreatment effect was reached with only a minor total solids loss of 5 % by weight mainly caused by the fungal metabolism. The combination of the biopretreatments did not improve the methane potential of the WS, but improved the initial biogas production rate significantly.Conclusion: The combination of the L. buchneri ensiling and C. subvermispora WRF treatment provided a significant improvement in the pretreatment effect on WS. This combined biopretreatment produced particularly promising results for ethanol production.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBiotechnology for Biofuels
Volume9
Issue number16
Number of pages10
ISSN1754-6834
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Bibliographical note

© 2016 Thomsen et al. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

Keywords

  • White rot
  • Ceriporiopsis subvermispora
  • Ensiling
  • Pretreatment
  • Lignocellulose
  • Ethanol
  • Biogas

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