Alginate production by Azotobacter vinelandii

Crit Rev Biotechnol. 1997;17(4):327-61. doi: 10.3109/07388559709146618.


Although all commercial alginates are today of algal origin, there is interest in the production of alginate-like polymers from bacteria. The species Azotobacter vinelandii seems to be the best candidate for the industrial production of alginate molecules characterized by a chemical composition, molecular mass and molecular mass distribution suited to a well defined application, especially required in the biotechnological, biomedical and pharmaceutical fields. The production of alginate by A. vinelandii has been to date widely investigated both in batch (mainly in the shaken flask scale) and in continuous cultures. This article summarizes current knowledge on the structure and properties of alginates and their applications and presents an overview of up-dated research on the physiology, genetics and kinetics of the production of alginate by Azotobacter vinelandii and its rheology, including the results of our recent studies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alginates / metabolism*
  • Azotobacter vinelandii / metabolism*
  • Bacterial Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Bacterial Proteins / metabolism
  • Biocompatible Materials / metabolism*
  • Glucuronic Acid
  • Hexuronic Acids


  • Alginates
  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Biocompatible Materials
  • Hexuronic Acids
  • Glucuronic Acid