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d-Galacturonic acid catabolism in microorganisms and its biotechnological relevance


d-Galacturonic acid is the main constituent of pectin, a naturally abundant compound. Pectin-rich residues accumulate when sugar is extracted from sugar beet or juices are produced from citrus fruits. It is a cheap raw material but currently mainly used as animal feed. Pectin has the potential to be an important raw material for biotechnological conversions to fuels or chemicals. In this paper, we review the microbial pathways for the catabolism of d-galacturonic acid that would be relevant for the microbial conversion to useful products.

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This work was supported by an Academy Research Fellowship from the Academy of Finland for P. Richard. We thank Dr Marylin Wiebe and Dr. John Londesborough for critical reading of the manuscript and helpful suggestions.

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Correspondence to Peter Richard.

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Richard, P., Hilditch, S. d-Galacturonic acid catabolism in microorganisms and its biotechnological relevance. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 82, 597–604 (2009).

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  • d-Galacturonic acid
  • d-Galacturonate
  • Pectin
  • Galactaric acid
  • Mucic acid
  • Galacturonate catabolism