Molecular and Process Engineering Approaches for Biotechnological Production of 2-Phenylethanol

Phenylethanol (PEA) is an aromatic alcohol with a rose-like odor which is widely used in the cosmetic and food industries. It is currently produced via chemical routes from benzene or styrene generating toxic wastes to the environment. Various yeast strains are capable of producing PEA from L-phenylalanine in a growth associated manner under controlled conditions. The drawback of this method is the inhibition of cell growth by the accumulating product. We are evaluating different strategies for overcoming this problem using in situ product removal methods or by generating robust yeast strains.

This project is funded by the Russell Berrie Nanotechnology Institute at the Technion

Immiscible ionic liquids can serve as in-situ product removal solvents for the bioproduction of 2-phenylethanol by growing Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast cells

Immiscible ionic liquids