Direct conversion of cellulose into ethanol and ethyl-β-d-glucoside via engineered Saccharomyces cerevisiae

Lahiru N. Jayakody, Jing Jing Liu, Eun Ju Yun, Timothy Lee Turner, Eun Joong Oh, Yong Su Jin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF) of cellulose via engineered Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a sustainable solution to valorize cellulose into fuels and chemicals. In this study, we demonstrate the feasibility of direct conversion of cellulose into ethanol and a biodegradable surfactant, ethyl-β-d-glucoside, via an engineered yeast strain (i.e., strain EJ2) expressing heterologous cellodextrin transporter (CDT-1) and intracellular β-glucosidase (GH1-1) originating from Neurospora crassa. We identified the formation of ethyl-β-d-glucoside in SSF of cellulose by the EJ2 strain owing to transglycosylation activity of GH1-1. The EJ2 strain coproduced 0.34 ± 0.03 g ethanol/g cellulose and 0.06 ± 0.00 g ethyl-β-d-glucoside/g cellulose at a rate of 0.30 ± 0.02 g·L−1·h−1 and 0.09 ± 01 g·L−1·h−1, respectively, during the SSF of Avicel PH-101 cellulose, supplemented only with Celluclast 1.5 L. Herein, we report a possible coproduction of a value-added chemical (alkyl-glucosides) during SSF of cellulose exploiting the transglycosylation activity of GH1-1 in engineered S. cerevisiae. This coproduction could have a substantial effect on the overall technoeconomic feasibility of theSSF of cellulose.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2859-2868
Number of pages10
JournalBiotechnology and bioengineering
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2018


  • cellulose
  • ethyl-β-d-glucoside
  • intracellular β-glucosidase
  • simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF)
  • transglycosylation
  • yeast

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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