- Biological Lignin Valorization (BLV)

Research output: NRELPresentation


The Biological Lignin Valorization (BLV) project develops microbial strains and associated bioprocesses to convert lignin-derived aromatic compounds into value-added bioproducts. Our main objective in the BLV project is to achieve industrially relevant bioproduction metrics that can directly contribute to the economic viability and improved sustainability of the integrated lignocellulosic biorefinery, in collaboration with complementary BETO-funded lignin valorization projects. Specifically, the BLV project works closely with the BETO-funded Lignin Utilization project, which provides bio-available aromatic compounds from chemo-catalytic lignin depolymerization. We use the robust soil bacterium, Pseudomonas putida, as our primary microbial host for the conversion of lignin-derived compounds to bioproducts. To date, we have focused on atom-efficient bioproducts that can be used as either direct replacement chemicals or performance-advantaged bioproducts, including cis,cis-muconic acid, beta-ketoadipic acid, and 2-pyrone-4,6-dicarboxylic acid. From model aromatic substrates, we have achieved titers of each of these compounds approaching 40 g/L and productivity values ranging from 0.5 to over 1 g/L/hr, all at 90% molar yield or higher. From real lignin streams, we have thus far achieved 24 g/L, 0.66 g/L/hr, and theoretical yield of beta-ketoadipic acid. A major pursuit now is to reach industrially relevant performance metrics on an expanded slate of lignin-derived streams.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages31
StatePublished - 2023

Publication series

NamePresented at the 2023 U.S. Department of Energy's Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) Project Peer Review, 3-7 April 2023, Denver, Colorado

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/PR-2800-85606


  • lignin valorization


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