Technologies

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You can also view all of our technologies on the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) website »

GLBRC's Technologies

Technologies

As a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Bioenergy Research Center, we are positioned to make key discoveries and major advances that will lead to breakthrough technologies for eventual large-scale conversion of biomass into fuels. Each new invention, patent and license listed here represents another step toward that goal.

GLBRC is seeking commercial partners interested in developing the following technologies.

Process To Extract and Fractionate Lignin and Plant Cell Wall Extractives Using Ammonia, Solvents and Combinations Thereof

Bruce Dale, Shishir Chundawat, Venkatesh Balan, Leonardo da Costa Sousa

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Enzymatically processing lignocellulosic biomass for ethanol production results in the separation of cellulose and lignin. While cellulose can be used to create ethanol, the lignin extracted through standard paper pulping and other chemically harsh methods is generally considered unfit for commercial use due to impurities and heterogeneity. MSU researchers developed...

Patent application submitted

Genes for Xylose Fermentation, Enhanced Biofuel Production in Yeast

Audrey Gasch, Dana Wohlbach

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Efficient fermentation of cellulosic feedstocks is an essential step in the production of biofuel from plant materials. Glucose and xylose are the two most abundant monomeric carbohydrates found in hemicellulose. Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the yeast most commonly used for industrial fermentation, is able to utilize glucose but is unable to ferment...

Patent application submitted

One- and Two-Phase Conversion of Biomass to Furfural

James Dumesic, Elif Gurbuz, Stephanie Wettstein, David Alonso

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Exploiting the energy potential of biomass high in cellulose and lignin—including grasses, shrubs, husks, bark, yard and mill offal not readily digestible by humans—offers a vast and renewable alternative to fossil carbons. In addition to producing gamma-valerolactone (GVL), an organic compound viable in gasoline mixtures, other valuable chemicals can be...

Patent issued

Production of Oil in Vegetative Tissues (TGD3)

Christoph Benning, Changcheng Xu, Binbin Lu, Jinpeng Gao

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Production of alternative fuels such as biodiesel is on the rise around the world and in the U.S. due to a strong and growing desire to reduce dependency on petroleum-derived diesel fuel. The acceptance of biodiesel has been slowed due to its higher cost relative to petroleum-derived diesel. The higher...

Patent application submitted

BAHD Acyltransferase That Synthesizes Coniferyl Ferulate

Curtis Wilkerson, John Ralph, Saunia Withers

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Lignin, an abundant polymer of vascular plants that provides structural integrity and resistance to chemical and enzymatic damage to the plant cell wall, is the second most abundant polymer on earth and critical to the strength and survival of terrestrial plants. Unfortunately, its mechanical strength and resistance to chemical degradation,...

Patent application submitted

Cost-Effective Enzyme for Producing Biofuels from Cellulosic Biomass

Ming Woei Lau, Bruce Dale

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Producing biofuels from cellulosic materials, such as corn stalks, wood chips, and other biomass, requires the use of enzymes to degrade the cellulosic biomass into its molecular components. The cost to produce these enzymes is high, a factor contributing to the limited production of cellulosic ethanol.

Patent application submitted

Method to Produce Highly Digestible, Pretreated Lignocellulosic Biomass Using Anhydrous Liquid Ammonia

Shishir Chundawat, Leonardo Sousa, Albert Cheh, Venkatesh Balan, Bruce Dale

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In the continuing push to develop alternative fuels, bioethanol is clearly a viable option. However, if it is to become a truly economical alternative, a more effective and efficient method of processing lignocellulosic biomass must be developed.

Patent application submitted

Utility Promoters for Biomass Feedstock Biotechnology

Kyung-Hwan Han, Jae-Heung Ko

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Genetic optimization of biomass is necessary to improve the rates and final yields of sugar release from woody biomass. Areas that would benefit from genetic optimization include growth rate, environmental stress tolerance, yields of easily fermentable polysaccharides, total lignin content, lowering biomass recalcitrance to fermentation, and wood density.

Successful application...

Patent application submitted

Translation-Coupling Cassette for Quickly and Reliably Monitoring Protein Translation in Host Cells

Brian Pfleger, Daniel Mendez Perez

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Bacterial production of recombinant proteins is used commonly by researchers and commercial entities to manufacture a large variety of proteins. However, many proteins are not produced efficiently in bacterial cells and must be produced through a different expression system. In these cases the researcher generally does not realize that protein...

Patent issued

Use of Arginase and/or Threonine Deaminase in Plant Protection against Herbivores

Gregg Howe, Hui Chen

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Insect pests are a major cause of damage to the world’s commercially important agricultural crops. Current strategies aimed at reducing crop losses rely primarily on chemical pesticides. Transgenic crops with intrinsic pest resistance offer a potential alternative.

Patent application submitted

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