Qteros and UMass Amherst announce the issuance of a U.S. Patent for production of ethanol from a unique microorganism, the Q Microbe™
Qteros, Inc., and the University of Massachusetts Amherst announced today that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has issued U.S. Patent No. 7,682,811 titled “Systems and Methods for Producing Biofuels and Related Materials” describing the novel creation of products, including biofuels, through the fermentation of biomass by a unique, naturally-occurring anaerobic microorganism.
The patent is based on the novel Q Microbe™ (Clostridium phytofermentans), discovered by UMass Amherst microbiologists Professor Susan Leschine and Research Associate Thomas Warnick. Qteros, the exclusive licensee of the patent, has demonstrated that their Q Microbe™ technology offers ethanol producers significant cost reductions by streamlining the biomass-conversion process, commonly referred to as “consolidated bio-processing” (CBP).
“Integration of our unique Q Microbe™ technology into a cellulosic ethanol plant design allows producers the opportunity to dramatically reduce the capital and operating costs associated with a biomass-to-ethanol process,” states Kevin A. Gray, PhD, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of Qteros. According to Gray, “While traditional cellulosic ethanol processes require numerous production steps, including the addition of costly exogenous enzymes, use of the Q Microbe™ lowers costs by simultaneously hydrolyzing polysaccharides into simple sugars and fermenting all of these sugars into desirable products in a single-tank operation.”