Pretreatment of lignocellulosic biomass using Fenton chemistry

Dawn M. Kato, Noelia Elía, Michael Flythe, Bert C. Lynn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

93 Scopus citations


In an attempt to mimic white-rot fungi lignin degradation via in vivo Fenton chemistry, solution phase Fenton chemistry (10g biomass, 176mmol hydrogen peroxide and 1.25mmol Fe2+ in 200mL of water) was applied to four different biomass feedstocks. An enzymatic saccharification of Fenton pretreated biomass showed an average 212% increase relative to untreated control across all four feedstocks (P<0.05, statistically significant). A microbial fermentation of the same Fenton pretreated biomass showed a threefold increase in gas production upon a sequential co-culture with Clostridium thermocellum and Clostridium beijerinckii. These results demonstrate the use of solution phase Fenton chemistry as a viable pretreatment method to make cellulose more bioavailable for microbial biofuel conversion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)273-278
Number of pages6
JournalBioresource Technology
StatePublished - Jun 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the United States Department of Agriculture National Institute for Food and Agriculture Biomass Research and Development Initiative Grant # 2011-10006-30363s . In addition, the authors would like to acknowledge Dr. Michael Montross and his research group for all biomass feedstocks used in this work.


  • Fenton reagent
  • Lignocellulosic biomass
  • Microbial fermentation
  • Pretreatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Waste Management and Disposal


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