Biological pretreatment of sugarcane trash for its conversion to fermentable sugars
- First Online:
- Cite this article as:
- Singh, P., Suman, A., Tiwari, P. et al. World J Microbiol Biotechnol (2008) 24: 667. doi:10.1007/s11274-007-9522-4
- 755 Downloads
Pretreatment of lignocellulosic biomasses, the first step in their conversion to utilizable molecules requires very high energy (steam and electricity), corrosion resistant high-pressure reactors and high temperatures. These severe conditions not only add to the cost component of the entire process but also lead to the loss of sugars to the side reactions. Microbial pretreatments have been reported to be associated with reducing the cost factors as well as the severities of the reactions. Eight bioagents, including fungi and bacteria, were screened for their pretreatment effects on sugarcane trash. They narrowed down the C:N ratio of trash from 108:1 to a varying range of approximately 42:1 to 60:1.The maximum drop in C:N ratio of 61% was observed using Aspergillus terreus followed by Cellulomonas uda (52%) and Trichoderma reesei and Zymomonas mobilis (49%). The bioagents helped in degradation of sugarcane trash by production of cellulases, the maximum being produced by A. terreus, (12 fold) followed by C. uda (10 fold), Cellulomonas cartae (9 fold) and Bacillus macerans (8 fold). The microbial pretreatment of trash rendered the easy accessibility of sugars for enzymatic hydrolysis, which can be directed for production of alcohol.