The group of Microbial Enzymes for Industrial and Environmental Applications works on the development of enzymes that catalyze the hydrolysis, synthesis and/or biotransformation of natural polymers.
Main topics of the research are the study of molecular biology of carbohydratases and esterases, and the identification and design of enzymes for biotechnological applications in pulp bleaching, production of biofuels, synthesis of new compounds from wastes, improvement of textile fibers, food industry and development of new materials based on lignocellulose.
The research group is currently working on the biochemical characterization and genetic manipulation of lipases, glycosyl hydrolases, lytic polysaccharides monooxygenases (LPMOs) and expansins from the early stages of sampling, cloning and purification up to studies of structure-function relationship and enzyme engineering.
Exploration of biodiversity to expand the toolbox of new enzymes, or their improvement by protein-engineering strategies is the main goal of our research.
Main research interests are:
- Lignocellulose deconstruction and functionalization
- Green chemistry: biotransformations and biofuels
- Bacterial cellulose and nanocelluloses
- Microbial enzymes: discovery, characterization and improvement
- Applied biocatalysis
- Fermentation technologies
3D structure of Xyn10B
SEM image of bacterial cellulose