Making xylitol and cellulose nanofibers from paper paste – towards a green and sustainable society

phys.org | 3/19/2019 | Staff
nallynally (Posted by) Level 4
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The ecological bio-production of xylitol and cellulose nanofibers using modified yeast cells, from material produced by the paper industry has been achieved by a Japanese research team. This discovery could contribute to the development of a greener and more sustainable society. The findings were published on March 4, in Green Chemistry.

The research was carried out by a group led by Assistant Professor Gregory Guirimand-Tanaka, Professor Tomohisa Hasunuma and Professor Akihiko Kondo from the Graduate School of Science, Technology and Innovation and the Engineering Biology Research Center of Kobe University.

Effort - Processes - Society - Professor - Kondo

In his effort to develop innovative processes to achieve a sustainable society, Professor Kondo has focused on a variety of bio-compounds such as xylitol, a highly valuable commodity chemical, which is widely used in both the food and pharmaceutical industries (for example, as a sugar substitute in chewing gum).

Professor Kondo's group is also interested in innovative nanomaterials such as cellulose nanofibers, which present huge economic potential due to the properties of nanocellulose (mechanical properties, film-forming properties, viscosity etc.), and significant applications in food, hygiene, absorbent, medical, cosmetic and pharmaceutical products.

Demand - Xylitol - Nanofibers - Cost - Impact

The worldwide demand for both xylitol and cellulose nanofibers is constantly growing, and the cost and environmental impact of their industrial production remain very high.

The industrial production of xylitol and cellulose nanofibers from purified D-xylose and cellulose fibers respectively involve costly and polluting processes. In order to solve these issues and realize a sustainable and environmentally-conscious society, we must make use of renewable biomass such as paper paste (Kraft pulp) and develop innovative processes.

Production - Xylitol - Nanofibers - Kraft - Pulp

Biotechnological production of xylitol and cellulose nanofibers using Kraft pulp, deriving from the paper industry, could be an advantageous option, as...
(Excerpt) Read more at: phys.org
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