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Issue 3, 2016
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A review of whole cell wall NMR by the direct-dissolution of biomass

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To fully realize the potential of lignocellulosic biomass as a renewable resource for the production of fuels, chemicals, and materials, an improved understanding of the chemical and molecular structures within biomass and how those structures are formed during biosynthesis and transformed during (thermochemical and biological) conversion must be developed. This effort will require analytical techniques which are not only in-depth, rapid, and cost-effective, but also leave native cell wall features intact. Whole plant cell wall nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) analysis facilitates unparalleled structural characterization of lignocellulosic biomass without causing (or with minimal) structural modification. The objective of this review is to summarize research pertaining to solution- or gel-state whole plant cell wall NMR analysis of biomass, demonstrating the capability of NMR to delineate the structural features and transformations of biomass. In particular, this review will focus on the application of a two-dimensional solution-state NMR technique and perdeuterated ionic liquid based organic electrolyte solvents for the direct dissolution and analysis of biomass. We believe this type of analysis will be critical to advancing biofuel research, improving bioprocessing methodology, and enhancing plant bioengineering efforts.

Graphical abstract: A review of whole cell wall NMR by the direct-dissolution of biomass

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The article was received on 25 Nov 2015, accepted on 06 Jan 2016 and first published on 19 Jan 2016

Article type: Critical Review
DOI: 10.1039/C5GC02828K
Citation: Green Chem., 2016,18, 608-621
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    A review of whole cell wall NMR by the direct-dissolution of biomass

    M. Foston, R. Samuel, J. He and A. J. Ragauskas, Green Chem., 2016, 18, 608
    DOI: 10.1039/C5GC02828K

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