Technologies
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WARF: P100245US03

Genes for Xylose Fermentation, Enhanced Biofuel Production in Yeast


INVENTORS -

Audrey Gasch, Dana Wohlbach

The Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) is seeking commercial partners interested in developing a set of genes that are involved in xylose growth and fermentation in yeast and demonstrate substantial utility in enhancing biofuel production.
OVERVIEWEfficient 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 xylose. However, several Ascomycete yeasts that ferment and assimilate xylose have been identified, including Pichia stipitis, whose genome has recently been sequenced.
THE INVENTIONUW–Madison researchers have identified 10 genes in yeast that are involved in xylose fermentation. These genes could be used to create an organism that can ferment both xylose and glucose for enhanced biofuel production.
APPLICATIONS
  • Biofuel production
KEY BENEFITS
  • Could lead to the development of an organism capable of efficiently fermenting both xylose and glucose
  • May enhance the production of ethanol and other biofuels
  • Significantly improved xylose growth and utilization when engineered in S. cerevisiae
Contact Information
For current licensing status, please contact Mark Staudt at mstaudt@warf.org or 608-960-9845.
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Since its founding in 1925 as the patenting and licensing organization for the University of Wisconsin-Madison, WARF has been working with business and industry to transform university research into products that benefit society. WARF intellectual property managers and licensing staff members are leaders in the field of university-based technology transfer. They are familiar with the intricacies of patenting, have worked with researchers in relevant disciplines, understand industries and markets, and have negotiated innovative licensing strategies to meet the individual needs of business clients.