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Succinic acid is a promising chemical which has a wide range of applications and can be biologically produced. The separation of succinic acid from fermentation broth makes more than 50 % of the total costs in their microbial production. This review summarizes the present state of methods studied for the recovery and purification of biologically produced succinate. Previous studies on the separation of succinic acid primarily include direct crystallization, precipitation, membrane separation, extraction, chromatography, and in situ separation. No single method has proved to be simple and efficient, and improvements are especially needed with regard to yield, purity, and energy consumption. It is argued that separation technologies coupled with upstream technology, in situ product removal, and biorefining strategy deserve more attentions in the future.


Ke-Ke Cheng, Xue-Bing Zhao, Jing Zeng, Ru-Chun Wu, Yun-Zhen Xu, De-Hua Liu, Jian-An Zhang. Downstream processing of biotechnological produced succinic acid. Applied microbiology and biotechnology. 2012 Aug;95(4):841-50

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PMID: 22707056

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