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Alcoholic fermentation of d xylose by immobilized pichia stipitis yeast



Alcoholic fermentation of d xylose by immobilized pichia stipitis yeast



Biotechnology Letters 8(1): 47-52



Pichia stipitis NRRL Y-7124 yeast cells were for the first time immobilized both in agar gel beads and on fine nylon net for ethanol fermentation on D-xylose, in order to investigate the possibility of using the biocatalyst for improved utilization of the biomass pentose fraction. With free cells the initial xylose level affected little ethanol production, with a maximum of 22 g/l ethanol obtained in 5 days on 5% and of 40 g/l in 8 days on 10% xylose, and an average volumetric productivity of about 0.22 g/l h. The maximum ethanol concentration of 19.5% on 5% xylose with the nylon net attached cells in a continuous packed-bed column reactor was obtained with 35 h residence time. The volumetric productivities of 0.56 g/l h at 19.5 g/l ethanol and 1.0 g/l h at 15.0 g/l ethanol were markedly higher than those obtained with free cells. The stability of the immobilized biocatalyst was excellent. The same reactor could be used for at least 80 days without significant activity loss.

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