Analyzing the Ability of Modified Yeast to Ferment Xylose to Ethanol Public
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Ethanol fermented from biomass is a significant alternative fuel source, but the current process of fermenting corn is not sustainable. Lignocellulose has been considered an alternative biomass, yet difficulties remain in breaking down the material and fully fermenting it. One major obstacle is the presence of xylose and other pentose sugars which are not fermented by the standard microorganism used, S. cerevisiae. This project studied a modified strain of yeast and its ability to ferment xylose. It was determined that the modified yeast is capable of using xylose as long as some glucose is also present. The yeast performed optimally when greater than 50% of the substrate used was glucose. Additionally, it was found that the modified yeast grew at half the rate that the wild yeast did.
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