Provided are methods for decreasing carbon flow into lignin in plants, comprising reducing or eliminating, using mutagenesis and/or recombinant means, expression and/or activity of at least one chloroplast-localized arogenate dehydratase (ADT) sufficient to reduce phenylalanine (Phe) availability for metabolism into Phe-derived phenylpropanoids, wherein the amount, level or distribution of lignin is reduced relative to control plants. In particular aspects, the plant has a plurality of chloroplast-localized ADTs, and reducing or eliminating comprises reducing or eliminating expression and/or activity of at least two of the plurality of ADTs. Also provided are recombinant plants or parts or cells thereof, comprising at least one mutation, genetic alteration or transgene that reduces or eliminates the expression and/or activity of at least one chloroplast-localized ADT, wherein the amount, level or distribution of lignin is reduced relative to normal. Further provided are reduced lignin plant products.
Enzymes and combinations of the enzymes useful for the hydrolysis of cellulose and the conversion of biomass. Methods of degrading cellulose and biomass using enzymes and cocktails of enzymes are also disclosed.
Here we have shown that two microorganisms that normally would not co-exist due to differences in temperature optimums can be grown with one at suboptimal temperature, and together, they uniquely convert biomass to fermentation chemicals more rapidly and efficiently than either microorganism could accomplish alone. Additionally the two microorganisms provide different depolymerizing enzymes so act synergistically to more efficiently breakdown the biomass carbohydrates, while leaving lignin intact. Also, these microorganisms can be grown on biomass sequentially providing initial biological “pretreatment” at one temperature and a more complete fermentation with the second microorganism as the other temperature.
University of Georgia researchers have invented a method to more efficiently decompose biomass, which lowers the cost of producing biofuel. The method centers around a bacterium called Caldicellulosiruptor, which as has unique properties that make it more conducive for processing a type of biomass known as lignocellulsic. The modification of the bacterium DNA will improve the efficiency of converting biomass into fuels. Furthermore, the researchers have developed general procedures that can be utilized across other sections of the bacterium species.
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