Fungal upgrading of wheat straw for straw-thermoplastics production

Tracy P. Houghton, David N. Thompson, J. Richard Hess, Jeffrey A. Lacey, Michael P. Wolcott, Anke Schirp, Karl Englund, David Dostal, Frank Loge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Combining biologic pretreatment with storage is an innovative approach for improving feedstock characteristics and cost, but the magnitude of responses of such systems to upsets is unknown. Unsterile wheat straw stems were upgraded for 12 wk with Pleurotus ostreatus at constant temperature to estimate the variation in final compositions with variations in initial moisture and inoculum. Degradation rates and conversions increased with both moisture and inoculum. A regression analysis indicated that system performance was quite stable with respect to inoculum and moisture content after 6 wk of treatment. Scale-up by 150x indicated that system stability and final straw composition are sensitive to inoculum source, history, and inoculation method. Comparative testing of straw-thermoplastic composites produced from upgraded stems is under way.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)71-93
Number of pages23
JournalApplied Biochemistry and Biotechnology - Part A Enzyme Engineering and Biotechnology
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Molecular Biology


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