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Title: Tailor-made trees: engineering lignin for ease of processing and tomorrow’s bioeconomy

Abstract

Lignocellulosic biomass represents an abundant source of cellulosic fibres and fermentable sugars. Yet, lignin, a polyphenolic constituent of secondary-thickened plant cell walls significantly contributes to biomass recalcitrance during industrial processing. Efforts to reduce plant total lignin content through genetic engineering have improved processing efficiency, but often incur an agronomic penalty. Alternatively, modifications that alter the composition of lignin and/or its interaction with other cell wall polymers display improved processing efficiency without compromising biomass yield. We propose that future efforts to improve woody feedstocks should focus on altering lignin composition and cell wall ultrastructure. Here, we describe potential future modifications to lignin and/or other cell wall characteristics that may serve as strategic targets in the production of trees that are tailor-made for specific pretreatments and end-product applications.

Authors:
 [1]; ORCiD logo [1]
  1. Univ. of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC (Canada)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER)
OSTI Identifier:
1506666
Grant/Contract Number:  
SC0018409
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Current Opinion in Biotechnology
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 56; Journal Issue: C; Journal ID: ISSN 0958-1669
Publisher:
Elsevier
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
59 BASIC BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES; Lignin; Biorefinery; Monomer Ratio; Bioenergy

Citation Formats

Mahon, Elizabeth L., and Mansfield, Shawn D. Tailor-made trees: engineering lignin for ease of processing and tomorrow’s bioeconomy. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1016/j.copbio.2018.10.014.
Mahon, Elizabeth L., & Mansfield, Shawn D. Tailor-made trees: engineering lignin for ease of processing and tomorrow’s bioeconomy. United States. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.copbio.2018.10.014
Mahon, Elizabeth L., and Mansfield, Shawn D. Fri . "Tailor-made trees: engineering lignin for ease of processing and tomorrow’s bioeconomy". United States. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.copbio.2018.10.014. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1506666.
@article{osti_1506666,
title = {Tailor-made trees: engineering lignin for ease of processing and tomorrow’s bioeconomy},
author = {Mahon, Elizabeth L. and Mansfield, Shawn D.},
abstractNote = {Lignocellulosic biomass represents an abundant source of cellulosic fibres and fermentable sugars. Yet, lignin, a polyphenolic constituent of secondary-thickened plant cell walls significantly contributes to biomass recalcitrance during industrial processing. Efforts to reduce plant total lignin content through genetic engineering have improved processing efficiency, but often incur an agronomic penalty. Alternatively, modifications that alter the composition of lignin and/or its interaction with other cell wall polymers display improved processing efficiency without compromising biomass yield. We propose that future efforts to improve woody feedstocks should focus on altering lignin composition and cell wall ultrastructure. Here, we describe potential future modifications to lignin and/or other cell wall characteristics that may serve as strategic targets in the production of trees that are tailor-made for specific pretreatments and end-product applications.},
doi = {10.1016/j.copbio.2018.10.014},
journal = {Current Opinion in Biotechnology},
number = C,
volume = 56,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {4}
}

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