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Molecular structure of photosynthetic microbial biofuels for improved engine combustion and emissions characteristics.

Hellier P, Purton S, Ladommatos N - Front Bioeng Biotechnol (2015)

Bottom Line: These can be significantly more sustainable, throughout the production-to-consumption lifecycle, than the fossil fuels and crop-based biofuels they might replace.Furthermore, these fuel molecules can be designed for higher efficiency of energy release and lower exhaust emissions during combustion.This paper presents a review of potential fuel molecules from photosynthetic microbes and the performance of these possible fuels in modern internal combustion engines, highlighting which modifications to the molecular structure of such fuels may enhance their suitability for specific combustion regimes.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Mechanical Engineering, University College London , London , UK.

ABSTRACT
The metabolic engineering of photosynthetic microbes for production of novel hydrocarbons presents an opportunity for development of advanced designer biofuels. These can be significantly more sustainable, throughout the production-to-consumption lifecycle, than the fossil fuels and crop-based biofuels they might replace. Current biofuels, such as bioethanol and fatty acid methyl esters, have been developed primarily as drop-in replacements for existing fossil fuels, based on their physical properties and autoignition characteristics under specific combustion regimes. However, advances in the genetic engineering of microalgae and cyanobacteria, and the application of synthetic biology approaches offer the potential of designer strains capable of producing hydrocarbons and oxygenates with specific molecular structures. Furthermore, these fuel molecules can be designed for higher efficiency of energy release and lower exhaust emissions during combustion. This paper presents a review of potential fuel molecules from photosynthetic microbes and the performance of these possible fuels in modern internal combustion engines, highlighting which modifications to the molecular structure of such fuels may enhance their suitability for specific combustion regimes.

No MeSH data available.


The isoprenoid pathway (highlighted in gray) and examples of possible pathways (dashed arrows) that could be introduced to produce novel hydrocarbons (boxed). CJFS, (E)-β-farnesene synthase; IPS, isoprene synthase; GDH, geraniol dehydrogenase; GES, geraniol synthase; LLS, linalool synthase; LS, limonene synthase. Reproduced with permission from Hellier et al. (2013a).
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Figure 8: The isoprenoid pathway (highlighted in gray) and examples of possible pathways (dashed arrows) that could be introduced to produce novel hydrocarbons (boxed). CJFS, (E)-β-farnesene synthase; IPS, isoprene synthase; GDH, geraniol dehydrogenase; GES, geraniol synthase; LLS, linalool synthase; LS, limonene synthase. Reproduced with permission from Hellier et al. (2013a).

Mentions: The potential of cyanobacteria for the production of terpenes has recently attracted interest (Hellier et al., 2013a), with the possible addition of novel plant enzymes to the terpenoid (or isoprenoid) pathway, as illustrated in Figure 8, resulting in a wide range of potential products based on the C5 isoprene unit. Addition of the individual isoprene units allows construction of larger molecules (C10, C15), while inclusion and manipulation of oxygenated functional groups is also possible. To date, the synthesis of both isoprene (Lindberg et al., 2010) and β-caryophyllene (Reinsvold et al., 2011) has been demonstrated in Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803, while Davies et al. (2014) engineered Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 to produce 4 and 0.6 mg/L of limonene and α-bisabolene, respectively.


Molecular structure of photosynthetic microbial biofuels for improved engine combustion and emissions characteristics.

Hellier P, Purton S, Ladommatos N - Front Bioeng Biotechnol (2015)

The isoprenoid pathway (highlighted in gray) and examples of possible pathways (dashed arrows) that could be introduced to produce novel hydrocarbons (boxed). CJFS, (E)-β-farnesene synthase; IPS, isoprene synthase; GDH, geraniol dehydrogenase; GES, geraniol synthase; LLS, linalool synthase; LS, limonene synthase. Reproduced with permission from Hellier et al. (2013a).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4403606&req=5

Figure 8: The isoprenoid pathway (highlighted in gray) and examples of possible pathways (dashed arrows) that could be introduced to produce novel hydrocarbons (boxed). CJFS, (E)-β-farnesene synthase; IPS, isoprene synthase; GDH, geraniol dehydrogenase; GES, geraniol synthase; LLS, linalool synthase; LS, limonene synthase. Reproduced with permission from Hellier et al. (2013a).
Mentions: The potential of cyanobacteria for the production of terpenes has recently attracted interest (Hellier et al., 2013a), with the possible addition of novel plant enzymes to the terpenoid (or isoprenoid) pathway, as illustrated in Figure 8, resulting in a wide range of potential products based on the C5 isoprene unit. Addition of the individual isoprene units allows construction of larger molecules (C10, C15), while inclusion and manipulation of oxygenated functional groups is also possible. To date, the synthesis of both isoprene (Lindberg et al., 2010) and β-caryophyllene (Reinsvold et al., 2011) has been demonstrated in Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803, while Davies et al. (2014) engineered Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 to produce 4 and 0.6 mg/L of limonene and α-bisabolene, respectively.

Bottom Line: These can be significantly more sustainable, throughout the production-to-consumption lifecycle, than the fossil fuels and crop-based biofuels they might replace.Furthermore, these fuel molecules can be designed for higher efficiency of energy release and lower exhaust emissions during combustion.This paper presents a review of potential fuel molecules from photosynthetic microbes and the performance of these possible fuels in modern internal combustion engines, highlighting which modifications to the molecular structure of such fuels may enhance their suitability for specific combustion regimes.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Mechanical Engineering, University College London , London , UK.

ABSTRACT
The metabolic engineering of photosynthetic microbes for production of novel hydrocarbons presents an opportunity for development of advanced designer biofuels. These can be significantly more sustainable, throughout the production-to-consumption lifecycle, than the fossil fuels and crop-based biofuels they might replace. Current biofuels, such as bioethanol and fatty acid methyl esters, have been developed primarily as drop-in replacements for existing fossil fuels, based on their physical properties and autoignition characteristics under specific combustion regimes. However, advances in the genetic engineering of microalgae and cyanobacteria, and the application of synthetic biology approaches offer the potential of designer strains capable of producing hydrocarbons and oxygenates with specific molecular structures. Furthermore, these fuel molecules can be designed for higher efficiency of energy release and lower exhaust emissions during combustion. This paper presents a review of potential fuel molecules from photosynthetic microbes and the performance of these possible fuels in modern internal combustion engines, highlighting which modifications to the molecular structure of such fuels may enhance their suitability for specific combustion regimes.

No MeSH data available.