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Issue 11, 2011
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Industrial biotechnology—the future of green chemistry?

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Biocatalysis fulfils many key criteria of green chemistry, but this raises the question: how efficient are such production methods and how important is biotechnology for greener industrial chemistry today? This review summarizes the advantages, disadvantages and potential uses of biocatalysis to undertake greener chemistry. By addressing the obstacles of biocatalytic approaches, it will be demonstrated that continuous improvement is required to overcome existing limitations. To illustrate the state of the art in the use of enzymes and microorganisms, representative examples of industrial chemistry are discussed and evaluated in this article. Several biocatalytic processes are compared to their chemical alternatives. Finally, future trends for the biocatalytic reductions of amides and the asymmetric hydrogenation of olefins are discussed.

Graphical abstract: Industrial biotechnology—the future of green chemistry?

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The article was received on 20 May 2011, accepted on 18 Aug 2011 and first published on 13 Oct 2011

Article type: Critical Review
DOI: 10.1039/C1GC15579B
Green Chem., 2011,13, 3007-3047

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    Industrial biotechnology—the future of green chemistry?

    S. Wenda, S. Illner, A. Mell and U. Kragl, Green Chem., 2011, 13, 3007
    DOI: 10.1039/C1GC15579B

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