Main content area

Selection and characterization of an anaerobic microbial consortium with high adaptation to crude glycerol for 1,3-propanediol production

Zhou, Jin-Jie, Shen, Jun-Tao, Jiang, Li-Li, Sun, Ya-Qin, Mu, Ying, Xiu, Zhi-Long
Applied microbiology and biotechnology 2017 v.101 no.15 pp. 5985-5996
Clostridium butyricum, Peptostreptococcaceae, activated sludge, batch fermentation, feedstocks, glycerol
Crude glycerol is an ideal feedstock for bioproduction of 1,3-propanediol (1,3-PDO) while pure culture always shows low substrate tolerance and limited productivity. In this study, an anaerobic microbial consortium for conversion of crude glycerol was selected and its 1,3-PDO production capacity was evaluated. The consortium was obtained from anaerobic activated sludge by 19 serial transfers and mainly consisted of 94.64% Clostridiaceae and 4.47% Peptostreptococcaceae. The consortium adapted well with high glycerol concentration of 120 g/L as well as wide substrate concentration fluctuation from 15 to 80 g/L, producing 60.61 and 82.66 g/L 1,3-PDO in the batch and fed-batch fermentation, with the productivity of 3.79 and 3.06 g/(L∙h), respectively, which are among the best results published so far. Furthermore, mini consortia isolated by serial dilution exhibited similar microbial composition but gradually decreasing tolerance to crude glycerol. Four randomly selected Clostridium butyricum displayed different substrate tolerance and insufficient 1,3-PDO production capacity. This work demonstrated that the high adaptation to crude glycerol of the consortium was the collaborative effort of different individuals.