‘Higher’ alcohols, which contain more than two carbons, have a higher boiling point, higher cetane number, and higher energy density than ethanol. Blends of biodiesel and higher alcohols can be used in internal combustion engines as next-generation biofuels without any modification and are minimally corrosive over extensive use. Producing higher alcohols from biomass involves fermenting and metabolizing amino acids. In this review, we describe the pathways and regulatory mechanisms involved in amino acid bioprocessing to produce higher alcohols and the effects of amino acid supplementation as a nitrogen source for higher alcohol production. We also discuss the most recent approaches to improve higher alcohol production via genetic engineering technologies for three microorganisms: Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Clostridium spp., and Escherichia coli.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported by the Mid-Career Researcher Program (No. 2017R1A2B2004143 ) through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF), and Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP) (No. 20163010092250 ). This work was also supported by the research fund of Hanyang University (No. 201800000000288 ).
- amino acids
- genetic engineering
- higher alcohols