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Isolation of a novel high erythritol-producing Pseudozyma tsukubaensis and scale-up of erythritol fermentation to industrial level


This study isolated a novel erythritol-producing yeast strain, which is capable of growth at high osmolarity. Characteristics of the strain include asexual reproduction by multilateral budding, absence of extracellular starch-like compounds, and a negative Diazonium blue B color reaction. Phylogenetic analysis based on the 26S rDNA sequence and physiological analysis indicated that the strain belongs to the species Pseudozyma tsukubaensis and has been named P. tsukubaensis KN75. When P. tsukubaensis KN75 was cultured aerobically in a fed-batch culture with glucose as a carbon source, it produced 245 g/L of erythritol, corresponding to 2.86 g/L/h productivity and 61% yield, the highest erythritol yield ever reported by an erythritol-producing microorganism. Erythritol production was scaled up from a laboratory scale (7 L fermenter) to pilot (300 L) and plant (50,000 L) scales using the dissolved oxygen as a scale-up parameter. Erythritol production at the pilot and plant scales was similar to that at the laboratory scale, indicating that the production of erythritol by P. tsukubaensis KN75 holds commercial potential.

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This work was supported by the 21C Frontier Microbial Genomics and Applications Center Program, Ministry of Education, Science & Technology, Republic of Korea.

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Correspondence to Jung-Kul Lee.

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Jeya, M., Lee, K., Tiwari, M.K. et al. Isolation of a novel high erythritol-producing Pseudozyma tsukubaensis and scale-up of erythritol fermentation to industrial level. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 83, 225–231 (2009).

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  • Dissolved oxygen
  • Erythritol
  • Fed-batch culture
  • Pseudozyma tsukubaensis
  • Scale-up production