Innovative Approaches to Enhanced Enzymatic Microalgae-to Biodiesel Production

Eyad Sowan, Mohammad Sayem Mozumder, Hanifa Taher, Sulaiman Al-Zuhair

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Despite the increasing interest in biodiesel production from microalgae, the high cost of multistage production processes still hinders its commercialization. The high oil productivity of microalgae and their ability to grow rapidly under harsh conditions and in saline water make them a favorable feedstock for biodiesel production. In this review, conventional methods of producing biodiesel from microalgae are thoroughly discussed and compared to state-of-the-art technologies. Considerable emphasis has been put on the adoption of biocatalysts as alternative greener and more effective catalysts. Challenges facing the biocatalytic process and innovative ways to overcome them are also presented. The main focus is on the in-situ biodiesel production processes, which are promising to pave the way for industrial application of microalgae-to-biodiesel process. The use of state-of the-art thermoresponsive switchable solvents, coupled with immobilized lipase, for simultaneous cell disruption, oil extraction-reaction, and product separation in one pot has shown to be highly favorable. Because enzymes are expensive, finding ways to enhance their stability and reusability for a greater number of cycles is essential for the process to be economically viable and competitive.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)860-883
Number of pages24
JournalChemBioEng Reviews
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • Biocatalysts
  • Biodiesel
  • Microalgae
  • Microalgae-to-biodiesel production
  • Switchable solvents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Chemical Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Biochemistry
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Filtration and Separation
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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