CMB makes technological breakthrough for production of biobased plastics  

2006.10.12
The Center for Microbial Biotechnology at the Technical University of Denmark, is the first in the world to produce large quantities of succinic acid using genetically engineered yeast in a fermentation process

The Center for Microbial Biotechnology (CMB) at the Technical University of Denmark, is the first in the world to produce large quantities of succinic acid using genetically engineered yeast in a fermentation process. Succinic acid is important in the production of polyesters and is today being produced from crude oil. The discovery can open the way to biobased plastics production which can replace today's oil based plastics.

Professor Jens Nielsen at CMB says: "Succinic acid is an extremely useful ingredient in hard plastics, and our yeast creates a new technological platform for biotechnological production on a large scale. It can be a reality in 6-8 years."

Holland's DSM, one of the world's largest chemical groups with strong focus on industrial biotechnology, welcomes the discovery. Marcel Wubbolts, programme director of DSM's research and development department for industrial biotechnology comments: "It is good news and a very interesting technological breakthrough. It would have pleased me a lot, if we had made it ourselves."

The US Department of Energy, DOE, has also put succinic acid on the agenda. In a report, DOE has placed succinic acid on a list of the 12 most sought after bio-building blocks which could form the basis for biobased chemicals or materials which otherwise are made from oil. The news was reported by professional journal Ingeniøren (The Engineer).

Link > CMB 

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