• Open Access

Microbial biotechnology for producing high volume chemicals

An annotated selection of World Wide Web sites relevant to the topics in Microbial Biotechnology


  • Lawrence P. Wackett

    1. McKnight Professor and Head
      Microbial Biochemistry and Biotechnology
      Department of Biochemistry
      Molecular Biology and Biophysics
      University of Minnesota
      St Paul, MN 55108, USA
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New biocatalysts


This web publication discusses biocatalysis for producing high volume chemicals from renewable resources. It is released by the U.S. Department of Energy.

Glycerol to commodity chemicals


Glycerol is a byproduct of biodiesel manufacture and that has caused a large decrease in its cost. Novel conversion routes for glycerol to commodity chemicals will make biomass utilization more efficient and profitable.

EPA green chemistry awardees


This site lists the green chemistry awardees. Most of the green processes are novel biocatalytic routes to chemicals.

Chemicals from biomass


This article discusses the past, present and future of producing chemicals from biomass by biocatalysis.

Method for the production of isobutanol


This patent describes a biological process for making isobutanol using recombinant bacteria. Isobutanol can be chemical modified to make a range of fuels and chemicals.

Benzene free routes to aromatics


Fermentation proceses can be used to make aromatic ring compounds in reasonably high yield. This offers an alternative to petroleum-based feedstocks for benzene and its derivatives.

1,3-Propanediol: Wikipedia


1,3-Propanediol is used in large quantities for making industrial carpets. Genencor and DuPont teamed up to develop an industrial process to make 1,3-propanediol in a genetically-engineered E. coli strain.

Acrylic acid from 3-hydroxypropionic acid


3-Hydroxypropionic acid is a biologically produced platform chemical. It can be dehydrated to produce the valuable commodity chemical acrylic acid.

Next generation fermentation


Most ethanol today is produced via a microbial fermentation process. This document details some of the current issues relevant to this process.

Acetic acid: Wikipedia


Acetic acid is mostly made chemically from petroleum precursors. Some, for foods, are produced biologically.

Acrylonitrile pathway map


The acrylonitrile pathway shows metabolic transformations leading from acrylonitrile to acrylamide and acrylic acid.

Branched chain alcohols: Biological production


This page from the BioFuels Database highlights reactions leading to the formation of various branched chain alcohols that have potential usefulness as fuels or chemical feedstocks.

Epichlorohydrin from glycerol


This page describes a chemical process to generate epichlorohydrin from glycerol that is obtained from biomass.

New chemistries and processes


This webpage is part of an e-book on sustainability in the chemical industry.

Biomass to chemical publications


This webpage from the U.S. Department of Energy provides links to e-documents pertaining to conversions of biomass to chemicals and fuels.