Bioprocess Engineering

, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 129-134

First online:

Microbial production of xylitol from D-xylose using Candida tropicalis

  • S. S. da SilvaAffiliated withGBF-Gesellschaft für Biotechnologische Forschung mbH
  • , A. S. AfscharAffiliated withCEBIQ-Center for Biotechnology and Chemistry, Faculty, of Chemical Engineering of Lorena, University of Sao Paulo

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Candida tropicalis DSM 7524 was used to produce xylitol from d-xylose. The fermentation conditions were optimized during continuous cultivation. The strain employed showed no great dependence upon temperature in a range between 30° C and 37° C. It achieved its best yield of xylitol from d-xylose at a pH value of 2.5. Such low pH values allow non sterile cultivation, which is a major economic factor. With an oxygen uptake rate of 0.8–1 ml oxygen per litre culture medium, the C. tropicalis produce xylitol at a yield of between 77% and 80% of the theoretical value. Higher yeast extract concentrations prevent the conversion of d-xylose into xylitol. d-xylose acts as a growth inhibitor in higher concentrations. The maximum xylitol yield was reached at a d-xylose concentration of around 100 g/l. In a non sterile batch culture with substrate shift 220 g/l xylitol were produced from 300 g/l d-xylose at a xylitol productivity rate of 0.37 g/(lh). In order to increase the specific yield, C. tropicalis was immobilised on porous glass and cultivated in a fluidized bed reactor. In a continuous non sterile cultivation with immobilised cells 155 g/l d-xylose produced 90–95% g/l xylitol with a productivity of 1.35 g/(lh).