Senna reticulata: a viable option for bioenergy production in the Amazonian region

Adriana Grandis, Bruna C Arenque-Musa, Marina C M Martins, Thais Olivar Maciel, Rachael Simister, Leonardo Dario Gomez, Marcos S. Buckeridge

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Senna reticulata is an Amazonian tree that quickly accumulates high biomass. It grows widely in the north of Brazil occupying degraded regions and is popularly known as “matapasto” (pasture-killer) due to its aggressive colonization strategy. When its aerial parts are harvested, S. reticulata recolonizes the pasture quickly recovering biomass production. In this work, we examined the potential of S. reticulata for bioenergy production in the Amazon region and the effect of a CO2 enriched atmosphere on its biomass composition. Nearly 50% of the biomass of the aerial parts is non-structural carbohydrates (NSC). Concerning structural carbohydrates, pectins (25% and 23%), hemicelluloses (11% and 16%), and cellulose (4% and 14%) contents were very similar in leaves and stems, respectively. Lignin varied considerably among organs, being 35% in roots, 7% in stems, and 10% in leaves. Although elevated CO2 did not change significantly cell wall pools, lignin content was reduced in leaves and roots. Furthermore, starch increased 31% in leaves under elevated CO2, which improved saccharification by 47%. We conclude that Senna reticulata is a suitable species for use as a bioenergy feedstock in the tropics and specifically for remote communities in the Amazonian region.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages15
JournalBioEnergy Research
Publication statusPublished - 29 Aug 2020

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