Effect of biodiesel-derived raw glycerol on 1,3-propanediol production by different microorganisms

Chuloo Moon, Jae Hyeong Ahn, Seung W. Kim, Byoung In Sang, Youngsoon Um

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

77 Citations (Scopus)


The microbial production of 1,3-propanediol (1,3-PD) from raw glycerol, a byproduct of biodiesel production, is economically and environmentally advantageous. Although direct use of raw glycerol without any pretreatment is desirable, previous studies have reported that this could cause inhibition of microbial growth. In this study, we investigated the effects of raw glycerol type, different microorganisms, and pretreatment of raw glycerol on the production of 1,3-PD. Raw glycerol from waste vegetable-oil-based biodiesel production generally caused more inhibition of 1,3-PD production and microbial growth compared to raw glycerol from soybean-oil-based biodiesel production. In addition, two raw glycerol types produced from two biodiesel manufacturers using waste vegetable oil exhibited different 1,3-PD production behavior, partially due to different amounts of methanol included in the raw glycerol from the two biodiesel manufacturers. Klebsiella strains were generally resistant to all types of raw glycerol while the growth of Clostridium strains was variably inhibited depending on the type of raw glycerol. The 1,3-PD production of the Clostridium strains using acid-pretreated raw glycerol was significantly enhanced compared to that with raw glycerol, demonstrating the feasibility of using raw glycerol for 1,3-PD production by various microorganisms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)502-510
Number of pages9
JournalApplied Biochemistry and Biotechnology
Issue number1-8
Publication statusPublished - 2010 May


  • 1,3-Propanediol
  • Fermentation
  • Pretreatment
  • Raw glycerol

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Molecular Biology


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