Flow Biocatalysis

Enzymes are amazing catalysts which effortlessly, and with extreme precision, regulate reactions of biosynthetic pathways in a biological system. We are taking enzymes from different sources, those that offer the optimal characteristics for our chemistry, and recreate artificial enzymatic cascades, leading to a variety of different molecules, ex-vivo, using a flow reactor.

When compared with a microbial machinery, optimised multi-step enzymatic syntheses in flow avoid all unnecessary pathways and energy draining process which are typical of a cell, as well as the physical barrier to substrates and products which is represented by the cellular wall.  

The enzymes we produce, are immobilised onto a variety of solid supports and packed into column reactors. Each enzymatic biotransformation can be individually optimised so that the starting material is fully converted into the product by the time the flow takes it out of the column. Two, three or more columns containing different enzymes can be connected sequencially, and several steps can be performed with high efficiency and fast flow. 

Continuous flow biocatalysis is the ultimate evolution of continuous processing and has brought enzymes to a whole new dimension. Flow-chemistry increases the sustainability of a process, specially when the “waste” can be also recycled.

However, flow biocatalysis can be integrated with other technologies. We are looking at projects where we can generate starting materials from engineered microbial strain (growing on cheap carbon sources) and feed the substrate-rich broth in the flow system for further modifications which are more efficiently carried out extra-cellularly.

Exciting times ahead!


Enzyme Toolbox

We have introduced many enzymes in our toolbox over the years (and we always look for more!) to make our chemistry more and more versatile.

Enzyme Immobilization

Enzyme stability can be greatly enhanced if the biocatalyst is anchored to a support. We develop novel strategies for enzyme immobilization.

Chemo-Enzymatic Processes

Flow equipment and compartmenta-lisation of reaction steps offer an exceptional opportunity to integrate enzymes in organic syntheses..