Influence of linoleic acid, pH and HRT on anaerobic microbial populations and metabolic shifts in ASBRs during dark hydrogen fermentation of lignocellulosic sugars

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International Journal of Hydrogen Energy





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Anaerobic sequencing batch reactor; community analysis; continuous biohydrogen production; glucose; Hydrogen; Metabolic flux analysis; Microbial diversity; microflora; mixed culture; oil mill effluent; Optimization; sequencing batch reactor; sludge; substrate; Xylose


In this study, controlling an anaerobic microbial community to increase the hydrogen (H-2) yield during the degradation of lignocelluosic sugars was accomplished by adding linoleic acid (LA) at low pH and reducing the hydraulic retention time (HRT) of an anaerobic sequencing batch reactor (ASBR). At pH 5.5 and a 1.7 d HRT, the maximum H2 yield for LA treated cultures fed glucose or xylose reached 2.89 +/- 0.18 mol mol(-1) and 1.94 +/- 0.17 mol mol(-1), respectively. The major soluble metabolites at pH 5.5 with a 1.7 day HRT differed between the control and LA treated cultures. A metabolic shift toward H-2 production resulted in increased hydrogenase activity in both the xylose (13%) and glucose (34%) fed LA treated cultures relative to the controls. In addition, the Clostridia population and the H-2 yield were elevated in cultures treated with LA. A flux balance analysis for the LA treated cultures showed a reduction in homoacetogenic activity which was associated with reducing the Bacteriodes levels from 12% to 5% in the glucose fed cultures and 16% to 10% in the xylose fed cultures. Strategies for controlling the homoacetogens and optimal hydrogen production from glucose and xylose are proposed. Copyright (C) 2012, Hydrogen Energy Publications, LLC. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


This is an accepted manuscript version of an aritcle whose version of record was published in:International Journal of Hydrogen Energy: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhydene.2012.11.137