Lactic acid fermentation within a cascading approach for biowaste treatment

Maraike Probst, Janette Walde, Thomas Pümpel, Andreas Otto Wagner, Irene Schneider, Heribert Insam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Limited availability of resources and increased amounts of waste coupled with an ever-increasing demand for raw materials are typical characteristics of our times. As such, there is an urgent need to accordingly update waste treatment technology. The aim of this study was to determine whether a separate treatment of the liquid and the solid fraction of biowaste could enhance overall efficiency. Liquid fractions obtained from two different separation procedures were fermented at a pH of 5 and uncontrolled pH conditions for 72 h. The fermentation conditions leading to highest lactic acid productivity and yield were evaluated. The substrates gained by both separation procedures showed efficient lactic acid production up to <25 g L−1. The pH control increased lactic acid concentration by about 27 %. Furthermore, quantitative real-time PCR analyses revealed stronger Lactobacilli growth in these fermentations. As identified via Illumina sequencing Lactobacillus delbrueckii and its closest relatives seemed to drive the fermentation independent of the substrate. These results could help to improve today’s resourcing concept by providing a separate treatment of the liquid and solid biowaste fraction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3029-3040
Number of pages12
JournalApplied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Issue number7
StatePublished - 19 Mar 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Biorefinery
  • Lactobacillus
  • Microbiome
  • Miseq Illumina sequencing
  • Municipal solid organic waste

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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