Continuous anaerobic fermentations were performed in a novel external-recycle, biofilm reactor using d-glucose and CO2as carbon substrates. Succinic acid (SA) yields were found to be an increasing function of glucose consumption with the succinic acid to acetic acid ratio increasing from 2.4gg-1at a glucose consumption of 10gL-1, to 5.7gg-1at a glucose consumption of 50gL-1. The formic acid to acetic acid ratio decreased from an equimolar value (0.77gg-1) at a glucose consumption of 10gL-1to a value close to zero at 50gL-1. The highest SA yield on glucose and highest SA titre obtained were 0.91gg-1and 48.5gL-1respectively. Metabolic flux analysis based on the established C3and C4metabolic pathways of Actinobacillus succinogenes revealed that the increase in the succinate to acetate ratio could not be attributed to the decrease in formic acid and that an additional source of NADH was present. The fraction of unaccounted NADH increased with glucose consumption, suggesting that additional reducing power is present in the medium or is provided by the activation of an alternative metabolic pathway. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.
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