Cellodextrin Transport in Yeast for Improved Biofuel Production

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Science  09 Sep 2010:
DOI: 10.1126/science.1192838


Fungal degradation of plant biomass may provide insights for improving cellulosic biofuel production. We show that the model cellulolytic fungus Neurospora crassa relies on a high-affinity cellodextrin transport system for rapid growth on cellulose. Reconstitution of the N. crassa cellodextrin transport system in S. cerevisiae promotes efficient growth of this yeast on cellodextrins. In simultaneous saccharification and fermentation experiments, the engineered yeast strains more rapidly convert cellulose to ethanol when compared to yeast lacking this system.