Effect of pretreatment severity in continuous steam explosion on enzymatic conversion of wheat straw: Evidence from kinetic analysis of hydrolysis time courses

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Research units

  • Graz University of Technology
  • Austrian Centre of Industrial Biotechnology


Focusing on continuous steam explosion, the influence of pretreatment severity due to varied acid loading on hydrolysis of wheat straw by Trichoderma reesei cellulases was investigated based on kinetic evaluation of the saccharification of each pretreated substrate. Using semi-empirical descriptors of the hydrolysis time course, key characteristics of saccharification efficiency were captured in a quantifiable fashion. Not only hydrolysis rates per se, but also the transition point of their bi-phasic decline was crucial for high saccharification degree. After 48. h the highest saccharification was achieved for substrate pretreated at relatively low severity (1.2% acid). Higher severity increased enzyme binding to wheat straw, but reduced the specific hydrolysis rates. Higher affinity of the lignocellulosic material for cellulases does not necessarily result in increased saccharification, probably because of lignin modifications occurring at high pretreatment severities. At comparable severity, continuous pretreatment produced a substrate more susceptible to enzymatic hydrolysis than the batch process.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-296
Number of pages10
JournalBioresource Technology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Research areas

  • Cellulase, Continuous steam explosion, Enzymatic hydrolysis, Kinetic analysis, Ligno-cellulosics

ID: 13017875