Identification of Critical Material Attributes in Lignin Streams Based on Pseudomonas putida Performance

Ilona Ruhl, Stefan Haugen, Ling Ding, Davinia Salvachua

Research output: NRELPoster


Variability in chemical composition of corn stover feedstocks has been suggested to play a role in biocatalyst performance during the conversion of lignocellulosic biomass to value-added compounds. In previous studies, we investigated the performance of Pseudomonas putida CJ781 - an engineered bacterium that converts aromatic compounds to muconate - on various lignin streams produced from the deacetylation of corn stover, and we found significant differences on muconate production. To better understand the origin of these differences, we down selected twenty-two compounds from literature - that had previously been detected as extractives in lignin streams - and we analyzed their concentrations in 12 lignin streams generated from different feedstocks. P. putida CJ781 was then cultivated in mock lignin streams supplemented with various concentrations of these compounds. Bacterial growth was tracked in microtiter plates and the performance was measured by comparing maximum growth rates among conditions. At maximum concentrations that may be found in lignin streams, sodium was the material attribute that limited growth rate in a greater extent, with a reduction in growth rate by 8 to 37%, depending on the counter ion, with sodium nitrate being the most inhibitory, followed by sodium acetate, sodium chloride, and sodium sulfate. Ammonium acetate was also found to be inhibitory at average concentrations of ammonium in lignin streams, reducing maximum growth rate by 18%. Overall, the data from this study has allowed to down select critical material attributes in lignin streams and process parameters that significantly affect the performance of P. putida and will be used as input to predictive models that aim to reduce risks attributed to feedstock variability in lignocellulosic biorefineries.
Original languageAmerican English
StatePublished - 2022

Publication series

NamePresented at the Symposium on Biomaterials, Fuels and Chemicals (SBFC), 1-4 May 2022, New Orleans, Louisiana

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/PO-2800-82788


  • biocatalyst
  • biorefinery
  • black liquor
  • lignin
  • pseudomonas putida


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