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Title: The emergence of Clostridium thermocellum as a high utility candidate for consolidated bioprocessing applications

First isolated in 1926, Clostridium thermocellum has recently received increased attention as a high utility candidate for use in consolidated bioprocessing (CBP) applications. These applications, which seek to process lignocellulosic biomass directly into useful products such as ethanol, are gaining traction as economically feasible routes toward the production of fuel and other high value chemical compounds as the shortcomings of fossil fuels become evident. This review evaluates C. thermocellum's role in this transitory process by highlighting recent discoveries relating to its genomic, transcriptomic, proteomic, and metabolomic responses to varying biomass sources, with a special emphasis placed on providing an overview of its unique, multivariate enzyme cellulosome complex and the role that this structure performs during biomass degradation. Both naturally evolved and genetically engineered strains are examined in light of their unique attributes and responses to various biomass treatment conditions, and the genetic tools that have been employed for their creation are presented. Several future routes for potential industrial usage are presented, and it is concluded that, although there have been many advances to significantly improve C. thermocellum's amenability to industrial use, several hurdles still remain to be overcome as this unique organism enjoys increased attention within the scientific community.
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [3]
  1. Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta
  2. ORNL
  3. University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Frontiers in Chemistry; Journal Volume: 2; Journal Issue: 66
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL); BioEnergy Science Center (BESC); Joint Institute for Biological Sciences (JIBS)
Sponsoring Org:
ORNL LDRD Director's R&D; SC USDOE - Office of Science (SC)
Country of Publication:
United States
Clostridium thermocellum; cellulosic ethanol; consolidated bioprocessing; omics; cellulosome; biomass utilization