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Title: A structured understanding of cellobiohydrolase I binding to poplar lignin fractions after dilute acid pretreatment

Background: Cellulase adsorption to lignin is considered a cost barrier for bioethanol production; however, its detailed association mechanism is still not fully understood. In this study, two natural poplar variants with high and low sugar release performance were selected as the low and high recalcitrant raw materials (named L and H, respectively). Three different lignin fractions were extracted using ethanol, followed by p-dioxane and then cellulase treatment from the dilute acid pretreated poplar solids (fraction 1, 2, and 3, respectively).Results: Each lignin fraction had different physicochemical properties. Ethanol-extracted lignin had the lowest weight average molecular weight, while the molecular weights for the other two lignin fractions were similar. 31P NMR analysis revealed that lignin fraction with higher molecular weight contained more aliphatic hydroxyl groups and less phenolic hydroxyl groups. Semi-quantitative analysis by 2D HSQC NMR indicated that the lignin fractions isolated from the natural variants had different contents of syringyl (S), guaiacyl (G) and interunit linkages. Lignin extracted by ethanol contained the largest amount of S units, the smallest amounts of G and p-hydroxybenzoate (PB) subunits, while the contents of these lignin subunits in the other two lignin fractions were similar. The lignin fraction obtained after cellulase treatment was primarilymore » comprised of β-O-4 linkages with small amounts of β-5 and β–β linkages. The binding strength of these three lignin fractions obtained by Langmuir equations were in the order of L1 > L3 > L2 for the low recalcitrance poplar and H1 > H2 > H3 for the high recalcitrance poplar.Conclusions: Overall, adsorption ability of lignin was correlated with the sugar release of poplar. Structural features of lignin were associated with its binding to CBH. For natural poplar variants, lignin fractions with lower molecular weight and polydispersity index (PDI) exhibited more CBH adsorption ability. Lignins with more phenolic hydroxyl groups had higher CBH binding strength. It was also found that lignin fractions with more condensed aromatics adsorbed more CBH likely attributed to stronger hydrophobic interactions.« less
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [2] ;  [2] ; ORCiD logo [4] ;  [5]
  1. Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States); Hubei Univ. of Technology, Wuhan (China)
  2. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
  3. Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States)
  4. Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States); Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
  5. Hubei Univ. of Technology, Wuhan (China)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Biotechnology for Biofuels
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 11; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 1754-6834
BioMed Central
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
OSTI Identifier: