The UF-led collaborative research team will develop biofuels derived second generation feedstocks which are derived from inedible plant matter. The proposed research will optimize the production of advanced biofuel feedstock by improving cultivars through intensive breeding/genomics and by developing best cultural management practices for the different crop species. The primary goal is to develop and optimize several crops as biofuels feedstocks.

These crops include:

Feedstocks: Goals

  • Improve feedstock (production potential and feedstock quality) using genomics and breeding tools
  • Identify locally adapted cultivars and their optimization for large scale production without food fuel trade-offs
  • Develop production logistics and identify soil and environmental criteria to ensure a commercially successful advanced feedstock production system

Feedstocks: Research Publications

  • 2018
      • Jun, S.Y., Sattler, S.A., Cortez, G.S., Vermerris, W., Sattler, S.E. and Kang, C.H. (2018). Biochemical and structural analysis of substrate specificity of a phenylalanine ammonia lyase. Plant Physiology 176(2):1452-1468. DOI: 10.1104/pp.17.01608
  • 2017
      • Castro, E., Nieves, I.U., Rondón, V., Sagues, W.J., Fernández-Sandoval, M.T., Yomano, L.P., York, S.W., Erickson, J., and Vermerris, W. (2017). Potential for ethanol production from different sorghum cultivars. Industrial Crops and Products 109:367-373.
        DOI: 10.1016/j.indcrop.2017.08.050
      • Felderhoff, T.J., Olmstead, J.W. and Vermerris, W. (2017). A cost-benefit analysis to select the most effective method for positional cloning: genotyping by sequencing versus allele-specific PCR. Euphytica 213:286. DOI: 10.1007/s10681-017-2068-0
      • Jun, S.Y., Walker, A.M., Kim, H., Ralph, J., Vermerris, W., Sattler, S.E. and Kang, C.H. (2017). The enzyme activity and substrate specificity of the major cinnamyl alcohol dehydrogenases in sorghum (Sorghum bicolor), SbCAD2 and SbCAD4. Plant Physiology 174(4):2128-2145. DOI: 10.1104/pp.17.00576
      • Kadam, S., Abril, A., Dhanapal, A.P., Koester, R.P., Vermerris, W., Jose, S. and Fritschi, F.B. (2017). Characterization and regulation of aquaporin genes of sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench] in response to waterlogging stress. Frontiers in Plant Science 8:862. DOI: 10.3389/fpls.2017.00862
      • Sattler, S.A., Walker, A.M., Vermerris, W., Sattler, S.E. and Kang, C.H. (2017). Structural and biochemical characterization of cinnamoyl-CoA reductases. Plant Physiology 173(3):1031-1044. DOI: 10.1104/pp.16.01671
      • Shukla, S., Felderhoff, T.J., Saballos, A. and Vermerris, W. (2017). The relationship between plant height and sugar accumulation in the stems of sweet sorghum (Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench). Field Crops Research 203:181-191. DOI: 10.1016/j.fcr.2016.12.004
      • Weerasekara, C. (2017). MS Thesis. Nitrogen and Harvest Impact on Warm-Season Grass Biomass Yield Feedstock Quality. Center for Agroforestry, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO.
  • 2016
      • Felderhoff, T.J., McIntyre, L.M., Saballos, A. and Vermerris, W. (2016). Using genotyping by sequencing to map two novel anthracnose resistance loci in Sorghum bicolor. G3 (Genes Genomes Genetics) 6(7):1935-1946. DOI: 10.1534/g3.116.030510
      • Rao, P.S., Vinutha, K.S., Kumar, G.S.A., Chiranjeevi, T., Uma, A., Lal, P., Prakasham, R.S., Singh, H.P., Rao, R.S., Chopra, S. and Jose, S. (2016). Sorghum: A Multipurpose Bioenergy Crop. In: Ciampitti, I. and Prasad, V. (eds.), Sorghum: State of the Art and Future Perspectives, Agronomy Monograph 58. ASA and CSSA, Madison, WI.
        DOI: 10.2134/agronmonogr58.2014.0074
      • Walker, A.M., Sattler, S.A., Regner, M., Jones, J.P., Ralph, J., Vermerris, W., Sattler, S.E. and Kang, C.H. (2016). The structure and catalytic mechanism of Sorghum bicolor caffeoyl-CoA O-methyltransferase. Plant Physiology 172(1):78-92.
        DOI: 10.1104/pp.16.00845
  • 2015
      • Casler, M.D., Vermerris, W. and Dixon, R.A. (2015). Replication concepts for bioenergy research experiments. BioEnergy Research 8(1):1-16. DOI: 10.1007/s12155-015-9580-7
      • Ten, E. and Vermerris, W. (2015). Recent developments in polymers derived from industrial lignin. Journal of Applied Polymer Science 132(24):42069.
        DOI: 10.1002/app.42069
      • Vermerris, W. and Abril, A. (2015). Enhancing cellulose utilization for fuels and chemicals by genetic modification of plant cell wall architecture. Current Opinion in Biotechnology 32:104–112. DOI: 10.1016/j.copbio.2014.11.024


Biofuel Information
Cutting a sorghum sample

Cutting a sample of sorghum for test purposes. Sorghum crops, biofuel production.