Biosurfactants as fermentation products from yeast

Many microorganisms (including bacteria, fungi and yeasts) excrete different types of biosurfactants (including mycolic acids, glycolipids, lipopoly-saccharides, lipoproteins-lipopeptides and phospholipids) (Desai and Banat, 1997). Biosurfactants reduce the surface tension in the same manner as chemically synthesized tensides. The biological origin, low toxicity and their environmental bio-compatibility favour these fermentation products over others for application in many fields, including cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, emulsifiers, preservatives and detergents. During the microbial production of sophorose lipids by Candida bombicola, glucose and/or triglycerides (oil and fat from plants) are partially degraded to obtain energy and a carbon source for growth of microorganisms. Simultaneously, the tensidic glycolipids are produced via gluconeogenesis, hydroxylation of fatty acids and so on (Lang and Rau, 1999). With Candida bombicola as a catalyst, and glucose and fatty acids from rapeseed oil as substrates, 0.65 kg sophorose lipids per kilogramme were obtained. If glucose and canola oil were supplied as substrates, 0.78 kg sophorose lipids per kilogramme were obtained (Lang and Rau, 1999). The production of biosurfactants from renewable resources such as vegetable oil, distillery and dairy wastes was optimized by Daniel et al. (1998); it is also ecologically safe and seems to be economic (Makkar and Cameotra, 2002). Biosurfactants from Bacillus subtilis, Rhodococcus erythropolis, Candida Antarctica and Streptosporangium sp. have been applied as anti-viral, anti-tumour and inhibiting agents for other diseases (Banat et al., 2000).

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