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Microorganisms in Biorefineries
Vol. 26, 2015, Pages: 275-301

Microbial Lactone Synthesis Based on Renewable Resources

Robert Kourist, Lutz Hilterhaus

Junior Research Group for Microbial Biotechnology, Ruhr Universität Bochum, Universitätstr. 150, 44780, Bochum, Germany.


Lactones are important flavor compounds and find frequent application in the production of food and as building blocks in fine chemical synthesis. The microbial production of optically pure lactones benefits from the high selectivity of biocatalysts and therefore simplifies downstream processing. A summary of different processes applying microorganisms or whole cells for the synthesis of different lactones is presented, starting at the cell metabolism and analyzing the hurdles in view of process development. Prominent examples are the synthesis of γ-decalactone using fungal strains, the Baeyer–Villiger oxidation using recombinant whole cells, and the γ-valerolactone synthesis.


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