Masters Theses


"Galactooligosaccharides (GOS) are prebiotics that are being used to influence intestinal microbiota towards health promoting, beneficial bacteria like bifidobacteria. Natural sources of GOS are not found in suitable levels to achieve the desired health effects so economically viable commercial production methods are important. Enzymatic conversion of lactose to GOS through transgalactosylation is a preferred method since the starting material is inexpensive and readily available. Enzymes used in batch production are purified from fungal or bacterial sources or remain in whole cells cultured for GOS production. Purified or unbound enzymes are single use whereas enzymes retained within whole cells can potentially be used for multiple cycles. In the present study Bifidobacteria bifidum ATCC 700541 is investigated as an organism for GOS production. The strain was cultured using a previously successful medium for growing bifidobacteria and the ß -galactosidase activity was measured and compared to levels in purified enzymes from A. niger and E. coli. We found that when compared to purified enzyme activity levels the costs of a single batch reaction using whole cells is the same as using purified enzymes. When the possibility for reusing the cells for multiple batches of GOS production is considered whole cells by far are a more economically feasible option for commercial production"--Abstract, page iii.


Sitton, Oliver C., 1951-

Committee Member(s)

Westenberg, David J.
Mormile, Melanie R.


Chemical and Biochemical Engineering

Degree Name

M.S. in Chemical and Biological Engineering


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Spring 2011


ix, 98 pages


© 2011 Candice Marie Luehrs, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

File Type




Subject Headings

Bifidobacterium bifidum
Oligosaccharides -- Biotechnology

Thesis Number

T 9836

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