University of Toledo U.S. Patents
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This collection includes United States patents for inventions by UT faculty, students and staff that list UT/MCO/MUO as the original assignee (owner). These patents include those assigned to the University of Toledo as well as to the Medical College of Ohio/Medical University of Ohio prior to the merger in 2006. Only granted patents, not patent applications, are included. Use the 'Search within this Series' box to search for keywords in the authors, titles, or abstracts of the patents.
- Methods and systems for the isomerization and fermentation of xylose and hexose sugars using an immobilized enzyme system capable of sustaining two different pH microenvironments in a single vessel are disclosed. Bilayer particles are dispersed in a mixture comprising an ionic borate source and xylose. The bilayer particles have an inner of a xylose isomerase having a pH of 6 or above, and an outer region having a second enzymatic activity at an acidic pH.
- A method of providing and sustaining a difference in pH of a first reaction of an immobilized enzyme and a second reaction in a bulk liquid surrounding the immobilized enzyme is carried out with a bilayer pellet containing coimmobilized enzymes. The pellet can contain an enzyme that produces a desired product immobilized in an inner core and urease immobilized in an outer layer. The bulk liquid contains urea and a substrate for the enzyme in the core, and has an acidic pH. The urease reacts with urea diffusing into the outer layer from the bulk liquid to produce ammonia. The ammonia consumes hydrogen ions diffusing into the inner core from the acidic bulk liquid. This provides the enzyme in the inner core with a pH higher than the acidic pH of the bulk liquid suitable for the enzyme to react with the substrate as it diffuses into the inner core. In a preferred embodiment, simultaneous isomerization of xylose to xylulose and fermentation of xylulose to ethanol is carried out with a bilayer pellet containing xylose isomerase in the core and yeast in the bulk liquid. The isomerization occurs at an optimum pH of 7.0 to 8.0 and the fermentation occurs at an optimum pH of 4.0 to 5.0.
- A bilayered immobilized enzyme pellet and a process to manufacture this pellet are provided for use in a process involving the simultaneous isomerization of xylose to xylulose and fermentation of xylulose to ethanol. The bilayered pellet is able to maintain the environment where the isomerization reaction occurs within its optimum pH of 7.0 to 8.0 while the fermentation reaction occurs within its optimum pH range of 4.0 to 5.0. This process allows both xylose and glucose sugars to be effectively used as a feedstock for ethanol production by isomerizing the xylose to xylulose and then making the xylulose immediately available for the fermentation process. Because the xylose has been converted to its ketose isomer, xylulose, yeasts which can ferment glucose and xylulose can be used in this process.