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Use of wastes for sophorolipids production as a transition to circular economy: state of the art and perspectives

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Chemical processes and petroleum-based chemicals are being substituted by biological processes and bioproducts. Surfactants and biosurfactants are an example of this trend. Among the biosurfactants, sophorolipids (SLs) have excellent surface and interfacial tension properties, which make them ideal to be used in a wide variety of applications. SLs are produced at full scale through submerged fermentation of pure substrates (glucose and oleic acid). However, research trends suggest that there is a lot of interest to produce SLs from waste effluents and other low-cost substrates, both in submerged and solid-state fermentation processes. This study reviews the current research in the production of SLs via fermentation processes, focusing on those using wastes, by-products, or low-cost substrates (liquids or solids). It details the substrates, process variables, microorganisms, and use of supplementary media for batch, fed-batch, and continuous submerged or solid-state fermentation processes. Sophorolipids production based on industrial by-products and waste effluents presents huge potential for its application at an industrial scale in a more economical and environmentally friendly process, boosting the necessary change to circular economy.




Jiménez-Peñalver, P., Rodríguez, A., Daverey, A., Font, X., & Gea, T. (2019, September 1). Use of wastes for sophorolipids production as a transition to circular economy: state of the art and perspectives. Reviews in Environmental Science and Biotechnology. Springer Netherlands.

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