Development of a consolidated bioprocess for conversion of plant biomass to versatile chemical building blocks

A still unrealized goal in biotechnology is to engineer microorganisms able to simultaneously degrade biomass and convert the stored energy into high-value compounds, i.e. consolidated bioprocessing. Most attempts have focused on model organisms, such as Escherichia coli and Saccharomyces cerevisiae, with thus far suboptimal results. Neither of these organisms is adapted to degrade the complex carbohydrates present in plant biomass, and as such their genomes require substantial ‘re-wiring’ to be of use in consolidated bioprocessing.
This project focuses on development of a consolidated bioprocess using non-model organisms, which have the innate abilities to both degrade the complex carbohydrates constituting plant biomass and simultaneously secrete multipurpose fatty acids. The microorganisms will be modified to generate designer strains able to grow well on select biomass types, such as forestry and agricultural waste and other industrial side streams.


Johan Larsbrink (contact)

Forskarassistent vid Chalmers, Biology and Biological Engineering, Industrial Biotechnology

Cathleen Kmezik

Doktorand vid Chalmers, Biology and Biological Engineering, Industrial Biotechnology


Norges Miljo-Og Biovitenskaplige Universitet

As, Norway

University of Michigan

Ann Arbor, USA


Novo Nordisk Fonden

Funding Chalmers participation during 2018–2020

Swedish Research Council (VR)

Funding Chalmers participation during 2017–2020 with 3,200,000.00 SEK

Related Areas of Advance and Infrastructure

Sustainable development

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