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African Journal of Biotechnology Vol. 6 (18), pp. 2130-2134, 19 September 2007
Available online at http://www.academicjournals.org/AJB
ISSN 1684–5315 © 2007 Academic Journals
Full Length Research Paper
Biodiesel generation from oleaginous yeast
Rhodotorula glutinis with xylose assimilating capacity
Chuan-chao Dai*, Jie Tao, Feng Xie, Yi-jun Dai and Mo Zhao
Jiangsu Key Laboratory for Biological Diversity and Biotechnology, College of Life Science, Nanjing Normal University,
Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, 210046, China.
Accepted 15 August, 2007
This study explored a strategy to convert agricultural and forestry residues into microbial lipid, which
could be further transformed into biodiesel. Among the 250 yeast strains screened for xylose
assimilating capacity, eight oleaginous yeasts were selected by Sudan Black B test. The lipid content of
these 8 strains was determined by soxhlet extraction method. One strain (T216) was found to produce
lipids up to 36.6%, and it was identified as Rhodotorula glutinis. The optimal fermentation conditions
were obtained as follows: glucose as carbon source 100 g/L; yeast extract and peptone as nitrogen
sources at, respectively, 8 and 3 g/L; initial pH of 5.0; inoculation volume of 5%; temperature at 28oC,
shaking speed of 180 r/min, cultivated for 96 h. Under these conditions, R. glutinis accumulated lipids
up to 49.25% on a cellular biomass basis and the corresponding lipid productivity reached 14.66 g/L.
Experiments with a 5-L bioreactor under the optimal culture conditions showed that R. glutinis
accumulated lipids up to 60.69%, resulting in 23.41 g/L in lipid productivity. More encouraging results
were observed for the lipid production with alternative carbon sources. Corn stalk and Populus
euramevicana leaves hydrolysate could be used to substitute glucose. Chemical analysis indicated that
biodiesel obtained by transesterification possessed similar composition to that from vegetable oil, one
of the widely...

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