APPLICATIONS OF TECHNOLOGY:
- Bioenergy crops for biofuels and high value chemicals
- Eliminates need for herbicides
- Fewer resources required to grow bioenergy crops
- Enables bioenergy crops on marginal lands
- Co-production fuels and high value chemicals improves economic viability
Researchers at Berkeley Lab’s Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI) have developed transgenic crops, primarily sorghum lines, that have an increase in dehydroshikimate dehydratase activity, and therefore, accumulate large quantities of soluble protocatechuate (PCA), without compromising plant biomass or soluble sugar yields.
Soluble sugars and PCA extracted from crop biomass and fermented would enhance biological productivity of microbials hosts to produce chemicals, such as muconic acid. These plant-based chemicals would replace petroleum-derived and muconic acid and other chemicals that are precursors to high value chemicals used in consumer goods. This technology demonstrates that crops can produce biomass feedstocks optimized for efficient co-production of biofuels and added-value or high-value chemicals.
DEVELOPMENT STAGE: Proven principle.
STATUS: Patent pending. Available for licensing or collaborative research.
SEE THESE OTHER BERKELEY LAB TECHNOLOGIES IN THIS FIELD:
Enhanced Production of Biofuel Precursors in Microalgae, 2013-075
Consolidated Conversion of Biomass into Biofuels Using Ionic Liquids, 2014-139