Use of cellulolytic marine bacteria for enzymatic pretreatment in microalgal biogas production

Camilo Muñoz, Catalina Hidalgo, Manuel Zapata, David Jeison, Carlos Riquelme, Mariella Rivas

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78 Scopus citations


In this study, we designed and evaluated a microalgal pretreatment method using cellulolytic bacteria that naturally degrades microalgae in their native habitat. Bacterial strains were isolated from each of two mollusk species in a medium containing 1% carboxymethyl cellulose agar. We selected nine bacterial strains that had endoglucanase activity: five strains from Mytilus chilensis, a Chilean mussel, and four strains from Mesodesma donacium, a clam found in the Southern Pacific. These strains were identified phylogenetically as belonging to the genera Aeromonas, Pseudomonas, Chryseobacterium, and Raoultella. The cellulase- producing capacities of these strains were characterized, and the degradation of cell walls in Botryococcus braunii and Nannochloropsis gaditana was tested with "whole-cell" cellulolytic experiments. Aeromonas bivalvium MA2, Raoultella ornithinolytica MA5, and Aeromonas salmonicida MC25 degraded B. braunii, and R. ornithinolytica MC3 and MA5 degraded N. gaditana. In addition, N. gaditana was pretreated with R. ornithinolytica strains MC3 and MA5 and was then subjected to an anaerobic digestion process, which increased the yield of methane by 140.32% and 158.68%, respectively, over that from nonpretreated microalgae. Therefore, a "whole-cell" cellulolytic pretreatment can increase the performance and efficiency of biogas production.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4199-4206
Number of pages8
JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
Issue number14
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


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