Biomass modifying enzymes: From discovery to application
Conference poster, 2012
It has now been realized that the road towards the bio-based economy is a one-way street, leaving gradually the oil-based technology and driving slowly towards a more sustainable society. The current non-biodegradable hydrocarbon fuels and plastics will be replaced by new products which will derive from natural and renewable resources. The synthesis of such biofuels and biochemicals is still challenged by the difficulties to cost efficiently degrade lignocellulosic material to fermentable sugars or to isolate the intact polymers. Biomass degrading and modifying enzymes play an integral role both in the separation of the polymers from the wood network, as well as in their subsequent modification, prior to further product development.
Our group interests focus on all levels of applied enzyme research of biomass acting enzymes: Discovery, assay development, production and application. Relevant examples will be provided: What is our strategy for discovering novel microorganisms and enzymes from the tropical forests and grasslands of Vietnam? How do we design novel real-world assays for enzyme activity determination? Which are the bottlenecks in the enzymatic cellulose hydrolysis? How enzymes can be used to produce high added value compounds from biomass?