D-Galacturonic acid reduction by S. cerevisiae for L-galactonate production from extracted sugar beet press pulp hydrolysate

J. Wagner, D. Schäfer, N. von den Eichen, C. Haimerl, S. Harth, M. Oreb, J. P. Benz, D. Weuster-Botz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Abstract: Pectin-rich residues are considered as promising feedstocks for sustainable production of platform chemicals. Enzymatic hydrolysis of extracted sugar beet press pulp (SBPP) releases the main constituent of pectin, d-galacturonic acid (d-GalA). Using engineered Saccharomyces cerevisiae, d-GalA is then reduced to l-galactonate (l-GalOA) with sorbitol as co-substrate. The current work addresses the combination of enzymatic hydrolysis of pectin in SBPP with a consecutive optimized biotransformation of the released d-GalA to l-GalOA in simple batch processes in stirred-tank bioreactors. Process conditions were first identified with synthetic media, where a product concentration of 9.9 g L-1 L-GalOA was obtained with a product selectivity of 99% (L-GalOA D-GalA-1) at pH 5 with 4% (w/v) sorbitol within 48 h. A very similar batch process performance with a product selectivity of 97% was achieved with potassium citrate buffered SBPP hydrolysate, demonstrating for the first time direct production of L-GalOA from hydrolyzed biomass using engineered S. cerevisiae. Combining the hydrolysis process of extracted SBPP and the biotransformation process with engineered S. cerevisiae paves the way towards repurposing pectin-rich residues as substrates for value-added chemicals. Key points: • Efficient bioreduction of D-GalA with S. cerevisiae in stirred-tank reactors • Batch production of L-GalOA by engineered S. cerevisiae with high selectivity • Direct L-GalOA production from hydrolyzed sugar beet press pulp Graphical abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.]

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5795-5807
Number of pages13
JournalApplied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Issue number14-15
StatePublished - Aug 2021


  • D-Galacturonic acid
  • Enzymatic hydrolysis
  • Extracted sugar beet press pulp
  • L-Galactonate
  • Pectin
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae


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