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Polyhydroxyalkanoates production from sugarcane vinasse by mixed cultures

Grant number: 16/01253-8
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2016
Effective date (End): February 01, 2020
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Sanitary Engineering - Water Supply and Wastewater Treatment
Cooperation agreement: Coordination of Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES)
Principal researcher:José Alberto Domingues Rodrigues
Grantee:Guilherme Henrique Duarte de Oliveira
Home Institution: Escola de Engenharia Mauá (EEM). Instituto Mauá de Tecnologia. São Caetano do Sul , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:15/06246-7 - Biorefinery concept applied to biological wastewater treatment plants: environmental pollution control coupled with material and energy recovery, AP.TEM
Associated scholarship(s):16/26034-7 - Towards the production of a novel biologically produced thermoelastomer from cane molasses, BE.EP.PD


The production of microbial biopolymers has drawn the attention of the scientific community due to the use of raw materials from renewable sources, providing an alternative to oil-based plastics. The polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) are a family of polymers synthesized as carbon and energy reserve by several microbial groups that are potential substitutes to conventional plastics. Their commercialization, however, is still limited due to the high production costs, when compared to their non-renewable competitors. To overcome this barrier, research has been conducted to enable the use of inexpensive raw materials and develop new, more efficient technologies for biotechnological production of PHA, extraction and purification of the polymers. In this context, the use of industrial wastewaters as raw material for the production of PHA is presented as a promising alternative, due to the association of reducing pollutant load with the generation of products of interest. This research project aims at the production of polyhydroxyalkanoates from sugarcane vinasse, the most abundant effluent from the ethanol biorefinery. It is proposed the use of a multi-stage digestion system, capable of enriching a mixed biomass with high PHA accumulation capacity, eliminating the use of pure and/or genetically modified cultures, as well as aseptic operating conditions. The operational parameters obtained will enable an integrated assessment of PHA production in the context of an ethanol biorefinery, compared to other possible destinations for the vinasse, according to energy, economic and environmental balances. (AU)

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
DUARTE DE OLIVEIRA, GUILHERME HENRIQUE; KRAUSPENHAR NIZ, MIRIAN YASMINE; ZAIAT, MARCELO; DOMINGUES RODRIGUES, JOSE ALBERTO. Effects of the Organic Loading Rate on Polyhydroxyalkanoate Production from Sugarcane Stillage by Mixed Microbial Cultures. Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology, v. 189, n. 4, p. 1039-1055, . (16/01253-8, 15/06246-7)

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