Trace Elements in Anaerobic Biotechnologies
The use of trace elements to promote biogas production features prominently on the agenda for many biogas-producing companies. However, the application of the technique is often characterized by trial-and-error methodology due to the ambiguous and scarce basic knowledge on the impact of trace elements in anaerobic biotechnologies under different process conditions. This book describes and defines the broad landscape in the research area of trace elements in anaerobic biotechnologies, from the level of advanced chemistry and single microbial cells, through to engineering and bioreactor technology and to the fate of trace elements in the environment.
The book results from the EU COST Action on ‘The ecological roles of trace metals in anaerobic biotechnologies’. Trace elements in anaerobic biotechnologies is a critical, exceptionally complex and technical challenge. The challenging chemistry underpinning the availability of trace elements for biological uptake is very poorly understood, despite the importance of trace elements for successful anaerobic operations across the bioeconomy. This book discusses and places a common understanding of this challenge, with a strong focus on technological tools and solutions. The group of contributors brings together chemists with engineers, biologists, environmental scientists and mathematical modellers, as well as industry representatives, to show an up-to-date vision of the fate of trace elements on anaerobic biotechnologies.
ISBN: 9781789060218 (Paperback)
ISBN: 9781789060225 (eBook)
Chapter 3: Trace element enzymes in reactions essential for anaerobic digestion
Juan M. Gonzalez, Blaz Stres, 2019. "Trace element enzymes in reactions essential for anaerobic digestion", Trace Elements in Anaerobic Biotechnologies, Fernando G. Fermoso, Eric van Hullebusch, Gavin Collins, Jimmy Roussel, Ana Paula Mucha, Giovanni Esposito
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Trace elements play a very important role on the performance and stability of biogas digesters from a variety of biomass-containing residues, both natural or synthetic. Degradation of these complex chemical compounds occurs by the interaction of numerous microorganisms carrying out a series of pathways involving fermentative processes that ultimately lead to methane production. The purpose of this study was to provide an overview of the direct relationships existing among trace elements and enzyme activity which regulates the anaerobic digestion processes carried out by these microorganisms. Methanogenesis is one of the most trace-element enriched enzymatic pathways in biology. Trace elements are major key elements in the functioning of multiple enzymes reviewed within this work. Although exact trace-element requirements may differ slightly between pathways depending on composition and the microorganisms involved, there are some general trends characterizing the anaerobic digestion processes. Iron (Fe) is the most abundantly required metal, followed by nickel (Ni), cobalt (Co), molybdenum (Mo), tungsten (W), and zinc (Zn). In order to sustain the anaerobic digestion, trace element ions are needed for the correct structural formation and the working of those enzymes. The lack of understanding on metabolic prerequisites of microorganisms and their regulatory networks, above all at full-scale industrial anaerobic digesters, may result in consequent borderline conditions with insufficient microbial activity towards optimized methane production processes.