REVIEW ARTICLE


Hydrogen Oxidizing Bacteria as Novel Protein Source for Human Consumption: An Overview



Suzanne C. Angenent1, #, Josje H. Schuttinga2, #, Merel F. H. van Efferen3, #, Boaz Kuizenga4, #, Bart van Bree5, #, Robin O. van der Krieken5, *, Tim J. Verhoeven6, #, Rene H. Wijffels7
1 Department of Biotechnology, Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen 6708, Netherlands
2 Department of International Development, Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen 6708, Netherlands
3 Department of Food Technology, Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen 6708, Netherlands
4 Department of Soil, Water, Atmosphere, Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen 6708, Netherlands
5 Department of Molecular Life Sciences, Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen 6708, Netherlands
6 Department of Biology, Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen 6708, Netherlands
7 Department of Bioprocess Engineering, Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen 6708, Netherlands


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Creative Commons License
© 2022 Angenent et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode. This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Molecular Life Sciences, Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen 6708, Netherlands; E-mail: robin1.vanderkrieken@wur.nl
#These authors contributed equally


Abstract

The increasing threat of climate change combined with the prospected growth in the world population puts an enormous pressure on the future demand for sustainable protein sources for human consumption. In this review, hydrogen oxidizing bacteria (HOB) are presented as a novel protein source that could play a role in fulfilling this future demand. HOB are species of bacteria that merely require an inflow of the gasses hydrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and a nitrogen source to grow in a conventional bioreactor. Cupriavidus necator is proposed as HOB for industrial cultivation due to its remarkably high protein content (up to 70% of mass), suitability for cultivation in a bioreactor, and the vast amount of available background information. A broad overview of the unique aspects of the bacteria will be provided, from the production process, amino acid composition, and source of the required gasses to the future acceptance of HOB into the market.

Keywords: Cupriavidus necator, Bioreactor, Hydrogen, Oxidizing, Bacteria, Protein, Hydrogenase, Industrial production.