Production of Cellulase and Xylanase Enzymes Using Distillers Dried Grains with Solubles (DDGS) by Trichoderma reesei at Shake-Flask Scale and the Validation in the Benchtop Scale Bioreactor


Most of the corn-ethanol plants use dry-mill process and generate large volume of distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS) as the co-product. The DDGS is a promising feedstock with rich content of cellulose and xylan. The goal of this study was to optimize cellulase and xylanase production by Trichoderma reesei (NRRL 6156) using DDGS as the carbon source at shake-flask and validate the results at benchtop bioreactors. The fermentation medium containing varied amounts of dilute-acid pretreated DDGS, yeast extract, and peptone were optimized for maximal enzyme production at 30 °C, pH 5.0 and 180 rpm with 3% (v/v) inoculum using Box-Behnken response surface methodology (RSM). Co-production of xylanase and cellulase enzymes was not achieved in the same medium; higher DDGS hydrolysate favored cellulase enzyme only while lower amount induced the xylanase enzyme. Based on the RSM results, maximal xylanase of 18.5 IU/mL was predicted with 5% DDGS hydrolysate, 0.1 g/L yeast extract, and 2 g/L peptone, while maximal cellulase of 1.1 IU/mL was predicted with 20% DDGS hydrolysate, 1 g/L yeast extract, and 0.5 g/L peptone. Of the two developed models from shake-flasks, xylanase model validated successfully the fermenter results giving 18.7 IU/mL of experimental xylanase in 1.5-L working volume bioreactor.

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This study was supported in-part by USDA Northeast Sun Grant Initiative (NE-SGI) Competitive Grants Program, the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture Federal Appropriations under Project PEN04671 and Accession number 1017582 and the Department of Science Fellowships and Grant Programmes of Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK-BIDEB) (Grant No.1059B191500892) by providing scholarship to Deniz Cekmecelioglu.

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Cekmecelioglu, D., Demirci, A. Production of Cellulase and Xylanase Enzymes Using Distillers Dried Grains with Solubles (DDGS) by Trichoderma reesei at Shake-Flask Scale and the Validation in the Benchtop Scale Bioreactor. Waste Biomass Valor 11, 6575–6584 (2020).

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  • Cellulase
  • Xylanase
  • DDGS
  • Submerged fermentation
  • Trichoderma reesei