Micro-droplet based directed evolution outperforms conventional laboratory evolution
Paper in proceeding, 2015

We present droplet adaptive laboratory evolution (DrALE), a directed evolution method used to improve industrial enzyme producing microorganisms for e.g. feedstock digestion. DrALE is based linking a desired phenotype to growth rate allowing only desired cells to proliferate. Single cells are confined in microfluidic droplets to prevent the phenotype, e.g. secreted enzymes, from leaking between cells. The method was benchmarked against and found to significantly outperform conventional adaptive laboratory evolution (ALE) in enriching enzyme producing cells. It was furthermore applied to enrich a whole-genome mutated library of yeast cells for α-amylase activity.

High throughput

Directed evolution

Cell factories

Droplet microfluidics



S. L. Sjostrom

Royal Institute of Technology (KTH)

Mingtao Huang

Chalmers, Biology and Biological Engineering, Systems and Synthetic Biology

Jens B Nielsen

Chalmers, Biology and Biological Engineering, Systems and Synthetic Biology

H. N. Joensson

Royal Institute of Technology (KTH)

H. A. Svahn

Royal Institute of Technology (KTH)

18th International Conference on Miniaturized Systems for Chemistry and Life Sciences, MicroTAS 2014; United States; 26-30 October 2014

978-097980647-6 (ISBN)

Areas of Advance

Life Science Engineering (2010-2018)

Subject Categories

Bioinformatics and Systems Biology



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