The workshop "Enzyme Expression in Pichia pastoris" will contain several talks from leading experts in this fascinating field of research. Scientists and industry experts will discuss new developments in enzyme overproduction and will put a special emphasis on the expression system Pichia pastoris.
Interested? You can register here for the workshop.
OPTIBIOCAT is backed by around €7 million of EU funding under the FP7-programme and brings together a broad interdisciplinary team of researchers, academics and industry experts, with 16 partners from Italy, France, Germany, Greece, Portugal, Sweden, the Netherlands and Finland covering the entire development process, from genome and microbial mining to application. Most prominent industry partner is Greek natural cosmetics producer Korres. The four-year project will replace resource and energy-intensive chemical processes currently used in the cosmetic industry through discovering and optimising novel enzymatic biocatalysts. The OPTIBIOCAT researchers will develop highly effective biocatalysts, requiring fewer steps in the production of components as well as lower-temperatures (50-60°C) compared to those of chemical processes (up to 160°C). High temperatures in current chemical techniques need a large amount of making the process expensive as well as environmentally unsound. “The environmental footprint for the production of the identified antioxidants will be significantly reduced with our innovative biocatalysts,” says Vincenza Faraco from the University of Naples, who leads the OPTIBIOCAT consortium. “In addition, unwanted side reactions will be minimised, resulting in highly pure products that will allow for improved product quality and reduced process costs.”
The novel biocatalysts will be based on feruloyl acid esterases (FAEs) and glucuronyl esterases (GEs) for the production of phenolic fatty- and sugar-esters with antioxidant activity. They will also be tested for potential in other products with improved biological activity. FAEs and GEs will be improved by site-directed mutagenesis and directed evolution and the project also aims to mine for completely new FAEs and GEs genes from available genomes, improving the efficiency of fermentation/production and stabilising both the enzyme formulations and the life cycle of the biocatalysts. An impressive portfolio of novel FAEs and GEs compounds will be developed that will include 50 fungal and 500 bacterial esterases, as well as 25 site-directed and 20 directed evolved mutants.
The outcome of the project has potential to support other industry branches besides cosmetics. “FAEs are also needed to produce ferulic acid, which is used as a food antioxidant, as well as in cancer and Alzheimer’s drugs”, says Annette Doerfel (BIOCOM AG, Berlin), the project’s communications manager.
Prof. Vincenza Faraco
Phone: +39 081674315/679895
University of Naples “Federico II”
Complesso Universitario Monte S. Angelo Via Cintia, 4
IT-80126 Napoli, Italy
Phone: +49 30 2649 2171
10785 Berlin, Germany