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Title: Cell Wall Targeted in planta Iron Accumulation Enhances Biomass Conversion and Seed Iron Concentration in Arabidopsis and Rice

Conversion of nongrain biomass into liquid fuel is a sustainable approach to energy demands as global population increases. Previously, we showed that iron can act as a catalyst to enhance the degradation of lignocellulosic biomass for biofuel production. However, direct addition of iron catalysts to biomass pretreatment is diffusion-limited, would increase the cost and complexity of biorefinery unit operations and may have deleterious environmental impacts. Here, we show a new strategy for in planta accumulation of iron throughout the volume of the cell wall where iron acts as a catalyst in the deconstruction of lignocellulosic biomass. We engineered CBM-IBP fusion polypeptides composed of a carbohydrate-binding module family 11 (CBM11) and an iron-binding peptide (IBP) for secretion into Arabidopsis and rice cell walls. CBM-IBP transformed Arabidopsis and rice plants show significant increases in iron accumulation and biomass conversion compared to respective controls. Further, CBM-IBP rice shows a 35% increase in seed iron concentration and a 40% increase in seed yield in greenhouse experiments. CBM-IBP rice potentially could be used to address iron deficiency, the most common and widespread nutritional disorder according to the World Health Organization.
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Publication Date:
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Report Number(s):
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Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Plant Biotechnology Journal; Journal Volume: 14; Journal Issue: 10
Research Org:
NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States))
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
09 BIOMASS FUELS; 37 INORGANIC, ORGANIC, PHYSICAL, AND ANAYLYTICAL CHEMISTRY biofuels; cell walls; secretion; iron-binding peptide; carbohydrate-binding module (CBM); iron concentration