Production of valuable substances from seaweed sugars with the help of thermophilic bacteria

Project title: Macroalgal biorefinery

Partners: University of Akureyri; University of Iceland; Lund University

Research Fund: Rannís

Initial year: 2015


Ólafur H. Friðjónsson

Research Group Leader

One of the most important tasks of biotechnology today is to develop cost-effective production of valuable materials from cheap biomass. 

Many thermophilic microorganisms can break down various polysaccharides from plants and algae efficiently and ferment and utilize the breakdown sugars.

The aim of the Macroalgal biorefinery project was to utilize thermophilic bacteria of the genus Thermoanaerobacterium to convert the decomposition products of seaweed sugar into a valuable substance: 1,2-propanediol which is used as a base material for example in the production of various degradable polymeric materials.