Production of Acetone, Butanol, and Ethanol (ABE) by Clostridium acetobutylicum YM1 from Pretreated Palm Kernel Cake in Batch Culture Fermentation

Abdualati Ibrahim Al-Tabib, Najeeb Kaid Al-Shorgani, Hassimi Abu Hassan, Aidil Abdul Hamid, Mohd Sahaid Kalil


The viability of most fermentation processes is very much dependent on the cheap fermentation medium used. Palm kernel cake (PKC) is an abundant biomass generated from the palm oil processing industry that can be used as the carbon source for the growth and production of acetone-butanol-ethanol fermentation (ABE) by Clostridia. In this study, ABE production from the fermentation of PKC using Clostridium acetobutylicum YM1 in a batch culture was conducted. The PKC was subjected to treatment with acids (sulphuric and hydrochloric acids), alkali (sodium hydroxide and alkaline peroxide), enzymatic hydrolysis, and hydrothermal treatment (in autoclave). The sulphuric acid-treated PKC (2% SAPKC) method produced the highest concentration of reducing sugars (30 g/L) compared with the other methods applied. The results showed that increasing the concentration of H2SO4 up to 3% decreased the amounts of generated reducing sugars to 20.4 g/L, which is about 32% less. The fermentation of 1%, 2%, and 3% SAPKC resulted in the production of ABE of 1.07, 5.72, and 3.48 g/L, respectively. This study showed that the pretreatment of PKC improved the content of fermentable sugars and subsequently enhanced the production of ABE by C. acetobutylicum YM1. This study also revealed that PKC can be regarded as a potentially low cost substrate for ABE fermentation.


Palm kernel cake (PKC); Clostridium acetobutylicum YM1; Acetone-butanol-ethanol (ABE); Pretreatment

Full Text: PDF

Welcome to BioResources! This online, peer-reviewed journal is devoted to the science and engineering of biomaterials and chemicals from lignocellulosic sources for new end uses and new capabilities. The editors of BioResources would be very happy to assist you during the process of submitting or reviewing articles. Please note that logging in is required in order to submit or review articles. Martin A. Hubbe, (919) 513-3022,; Lucian A. Lucia, (919) 515-7707, URLs:; ISSN: 1930-2126