Solid-state fermentation: a promising microbial technology for secondary metabolite production
Solid state (substrate) fermentation (SSF) has been used successfully for the production of enzymes and secondary metabolites. These products are associated with the stationary phase of microbial growth and are produced on an industrial scale for use in agriculture and the treatment of disease. Many of these secondary metabolites are still produced by submerged liquid fermentations (SmF) even though production by this method has been shown to be less efficient than SSF. As large-scale production increases further, so do the costs and energy demands. SSF has been shown to produce a more stable product, requiring less energy, in smaller fermenters, with easier downstream processing measures. In this article we review an important area of biotechnology, since the recent evidence indicates that bacteria and fungi, growing under SSF conditions, are more than capable of supplying the growing global demand for secondary metabolites.
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