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Engineering of Bacteria for Production of Methyl Ketone Biofuels from CO2

Source:  Harry Beller

Harry_image_for_webRalstonia eutropha is a chemolithoautotrophic bacterium able to grow with organic substrates or H2 and CO2 under aerobic conditions.  Its ability to utilize CO2 as a sole carbon source renders it an interesting new candidate host for the production of renewable liquid transportation fuels. A team of LBNL scientists, including ESD's Harry Beller and Steve Singer, engineered R. eutropha for the production of fatty acid-derived, diesel-range methyl ketones from CO2.  This was the first report of autotrophic production of methyl ketones by engineered bacteria.

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Citation: Müller, J., D. MacEachran, H. Burd, N. Sathitsuksanoh, C. Bi, Y-C. Yeh, T. S. Lee, N. J. Hillson, S. R. Chhabra, S. W. Singer, and H. R. Beller (2013), Engineering of Ralstonia eutropha H16 for autotrophic and heterotrophic production of methyl ketones. Applied Environmental Microbiology, DOI:10.1128/AEM.00973-13.

Funding Source: ARPA-E Electrofuels Program