Enzyme systems of thermophilic anaerobic bacteria for lignocellulosic biomass conversion

Nisha Singh, Anshu S. Mathur, Ravi P. Gupta, Colin J. Barrow, Deepak K. Tuli, Munish Puri

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    13 Citations (Scopus)


    Economic production of lignocellulose degrading enzymes for biofuel industries is of considerable interest to the biotechnology community. While these enzymes are widely distributed in fungi, their industrial production from other sources, particularly by thermophilic anaerobic bacteria (growth Topt ≥ 60 °C), is an emerging field. Thermophilic anaerobic bacteria produce a large number of lignocellulolytic enzymes having unique structural features and employ different schemes for biomass degradation, which can be classified into four systems namely; ‘free enzyme system’, ‘cell anchored enzymes’, ‘complex cellulosome system’, and ‘multifunctional multimodular enzyme system’. Such enzymes exhibit high specific activity and have a natural ability to withstand harsh bioprocessing conditions. However, achieving a higher production of these thermostable enzymes at current bioprocessing targets is challenging. In this review, the research opportunities for these distinct enzyme systems in the biofuel industry and the associated technological challenges are discussed. The current status of research findings is highlighted along with a detailed description of the categorization of the different enzyme production schemes. It is anticipated that high temperature-based bioprocessing will become an integral part of sustainable bioenergy production in the near future.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)572-590
    Number of pages19
    Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2021


    • Biofuel
    • Biomass
    • Cellulosome
    • Consolidated bioprocessing
    • Multifunctional enzymes
    • Surface-layer homology modules
    • Thermophilic anaerobic bacteria


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