The subject invention pertains to overexpression of a putative oxidoreductase (ucpA) for increasing furfural tolerance in genetically modified microorganisms. Genetically modified microorganisms capable of overexpressing UcpA are also provided. Increased expression of ucpA was shown to increase furfural tolerance by 50%, and to permit the fermentation of sugars to products in the presence of 15 mM furfural.
This invention was made with government support under DE-FG36-08GO88142 awarded by Department of Energy and under 2001-10006-30358 awarded by the Department of Agriculture. The government has certain rights in the invention.