Mini Review - Pharmaceutical Bioprocessing (2023) Volume 11, Issue 3

Technologies for ethanol production using sugar and starch as feedstocks

Antonio Lukas*

University of Waterloo, Canada

*Corresponding Author:
Antonio Lukas
University of Waterloo, Canada

Received: 02-May-2023, Manuscript No. FMBP-23-99758; Editor assigned: 04-May-2023, PreQC No. FMBP-23-99758 (PQ); Reviewed: 18-May-2023, QC No FMBP-23-99758; Revised: 23-May-2023, Manuscript No. FMBP-23-99758 (R); Published: 30-May-2023, DOI: 10.37532/2048- 9145.2023.11(3).56-58


A modified batch culture approach or a step between batch and continuous fermentation procedures is fed-batch culture. Similar to batch culture, fed-batch culture’s products are collected in batches, or after the batch time. However, similar to the continuous fermentation process, the substrate is gradually introduced throughout the cultivation. However, like with batch fermentation, the amount of substrate needed to produce the desired products is unchanged. However, the fed-batch culture adds substrates intermittently at predetermined intervals rather than all at once. One of the most common commercial fermentation methods involves adding nutrients to the bioreactor on a regular or predetermined schedule in order to attain high cell biomass densities. As a result, fed-batch fermentation is a semi-continuous process in which products are kept in the bioreactor until the run and substrate is continuously added in tiny amounts. Overall, fedbatch culture has extended cell culture time while producing high-yield and high-quality proteins. In fed-batch culture, the feeding media is provided continuously or sporadically. The fed-batch culture has advanced significantly in recent years. Process development still depends on optimising feed components. Feed-batch culture should take into account culture parameters, nutrient consumption, and build-up of metabolic by products, etc. at the same time. We continue to consider key parameters, such as cell proliferation, the yield, and the quality of RTPs, as we further explore RTP generation in CHO cells. However, fedbatch culture has flaws in the process development area; selecting the best parameters, such as temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, basal and feeding medium, and additives, can be difficult. Exploring a number of fantastic process parameters is restricted by a few variables [1-4].


Fermentation • Bioreactor • Concentration • Radiation


The bubbles formed when ethanol fermentation proceeds normally and effectively maintain a consistent pattern across the surface of the fermentation environment and are easily broken by the pressure put on them by the carbon dioxide released during fermentation. When there is contamination, the bubbles grow larger as a result of the coalescence of smaller bubbles, and when those bubbles break (which is not always easy), they are already large, irregularly shaped, opaque, and do not follow the same pattern as with typical fermentation. In order to regulate the volume of foam produced during the fermentation of industrial ethanol, it is common practise to add anti-foaming chemicals. One of the oldest and most significant fermentation processes employed in the biotechnology sector is ethanol fermentation. About 4.5 billion gallons of ethanol are produced each year from corn in the U.S. alone and used as fuel for vehicles. In the coming years, it’s anticipated that the yearly production of bioethanol in the United States will increase to more than 7.5 billion gallons and reach 30 billion gallons by 2025. Ethanol is a primary fermentation product that can be produced by a wide variety of microorganisms, including bacteria and yeasts. Due to its hardiness (low pH and high ethanol tolerance), the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is currently used most frequently in industrial ethanol fermentation, despite the bacterium Zymomonas mobilis having a better specific ethanol productivity and yield from glucose and sucrose. S. cerevisiae was used in batch studies to produce ethanol in triplicate using a 50 g/l glucose solution as the only carbon source. The batch experiment’s goal was to contrast the ICR and batch fermentation’s rates of ethanol output and glucose concentration. As depicted in Figure 8.6, the ethanol output and cell density increased over the course of 27 hours as the glucose content gradually fell. A lag phase lasting four to six hours occurred; during this time, little glucose was consumed. After 8–16 hours of batch fermentation, the concentration profile substantially reduced. Sugar consumption was initially minimal due to the low cell density [1-5].

The processes used to produce ethanol from feedstocks such as sugar and starch are examined critically in this article, paying particular attention to disregarded or misunderstood crucial elements. Because less biomass is formed and a greater glucose metabolic rate is maintained by its unique Entner-Doudoroff pathway, Zymomonas mobilis has a better ethanol output and productivity compared to Saccharomyces cerevisiae. This species, however, cannot quickly take the position of S. cerevisiae in the generation of ethanol due to its unique substrate range and the unsuitability of its biomass for use as animal feed. The steady state kinetic models created for continuous ethanol fermentations exhibit considerable inconsistencies, rendering them unsuitable for anticipating and streamlining industrial operations. In order to further raise the final ethanol concentration and reduce energy consumption, it is necessary to take into account the dynamic behaviour of continuous ethanol fermentation under high gravity or extremely high gravity circumstances. Because the growth of yeast cells and the manufacture of ethanol are closely correlated, yeast must also be generated as a by-product. The immobilisation of yeast cells by supporting materials, in particular by gel entrapments, is technically undesirable for the manufacture of ethanol because it restricts the growth of the yeast cells and makes it challenging to remove the slowly developing yeast cells from the systems. Additionally, the immobilised yeast cells are economically unviable due to the increased cost associated with the consumption of the supporting materials, the risk of some supporting materials contaminating the quality of the co-product animal feed, and the difficulty in controlling microbial contamination. Contrarily, these limitations can be successfully overcome by the self-immobilization of yeast cells by their flocculation.


In order to further raise the final ethanol concentration and reduce energy consumption, it is necessary to take into account the dynamic behaviour of continuous ethanol fermentation under high gravity or extremely high gravity conditions. Because the growth of yeast cells and the manufacture of ethanol are closely correlated, yeast must also be produced as a by-product. The immobilisation of yeast cells by supporting materials, in particular by gel entrapments, is technically undesirable for the manufacture of ethanol because it restricts the growth of the yeast cells and makes it challenging to remove the slowly growing yeast cells from the systems. Additionally, the expense of consuming the supporting resources and the risk for some supporting components to be contaminated the largest global biotechnology is the manufacture of ethanol through yeast fermentation. As a result, the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is the most important industrial microorganism in the world, producing billions of litres of bioethanol each year for use as a renewable transportation fuel in addition to alcoholic beverages like beer, wine, and distilled spirits. Although yeast’s ability to ferment has been used by humans for thousands of years, many aspects of alcohol fermentation are still not fully understood. The main microbial ethanologen, the yeast S. cerevisiae, will be reviewed in this chapter along with some of the important factors to keep in mind while optimising industrial alcohol fermentations, with a focus on prospects for improvement involving cell physiology and strain engineering [6-10].


Creating ethanol through the fermentation of sugars obtained from lignocellulosic biomass includes both an ever-evolving science and a rather old art. Wood ethanol facilities have been around since at least 1915, therefore the production of ethanol from lignocellulosic biomass is not particularly novel. The majority of today’s ethanol production uses starch- and sugar-based crops as the substrate, however due to the limitations of these resources and their competitive importance as human and animal feed, interest in lignocellulose conversion is growing once again. Using yeasts or bacteria designed to ferment pentose, the procedures for simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF) and a related but distinct procedure for partial saccharification and cofermentation (PSCF) of lignocellulosic biomass are described here. These techniques can be used for small scale, preliminary analyses of the generation of ethanol from various biomass sources. It is widely acknowledged that ethanol produced biologically from a variety of cellulosic biomass sources, such as agricultural and forestry waste, grasses, and quickly growing wood, is a unique sustainable liquid transportation fuel with strong economic, environmental, and strategic attributes. However, for these advantages to be realised, production costs must be competitive. Although continuous fermentation and hydrolysis technologies have significant potential cost-saving benefits, little research has been done on converting cellulosic biomass into ethanol continuously. In order to benefit from increased volumetric productivity, lower labour costs, and decreased vessel downtime for cleaning and filling, some continuous fermentation are currently used for commercial ethanol production from cane sugar and maize, as demonstrated in this review. However, these systems are more vulnerable to microbial contamination. Despite these difficulties, continuous processes may be even more crucial for lowering the costs associated with overcoming the resistance of cellulosic biomass, the main impediment to lowcost fuels, by enhancing the efficiency of using expensive enzymes. Additionally, continual processing may help fermentative organisms adapt to the vast spectrum of inhibitors produced during the pre-treatment of biomass or subsequent acid-catalyzed hydrolysis. High cell densities in a continuous system may permit higher productivities and yields than in batch fermentations if sugar production rates can be raised.


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