Making sugars, not extracting them: Proterro’s Technology

Solid-phase approach means work-around for contamination

Where other companies are growing sugars via crop improvements, or extracting them, Proterro is making them via synthetic biology. Specifically, they have engineered a cyanobacteria to make sucrose (via a series of steps you can read all about here), ultimately from CO2, water, sunlight and nutrients – and secrete it into a sugarwater stream that can be purified into affordable sucrose.

It’s been well-known in the literature for some time that certain cyanobacteria can accumulate disaccharides, via photosynthesis.

So, why aren’t there a raft of companies chasing this type of solution? First, there’s a ton of science in engineering up the yield to attractive rates.

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Tags: microbes, fermentation vats, enzymes, yeasts, distillation, F-T technologies, catalytic fast pyrolysis, combustion gas, flue gas

Source: BiofuelsDigest, 2012-09-18.