Phytowelt News » Phytowelt coordinates multidisciplinary Green/White biotechnology project AELMON


02/29/2012, Phytowelt Nettetal / Köln

The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) of Germany has approved funding for a project of a consortium of two SMEs and two academic institutes, called AELMON.

The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) of Germany has approved funding for a project of a consortium of two SMEs and two academic institutes, called AELMON. AELMON will be carried out as a corporation of DECHEMA (Frankfurt/Main), the Westphalian Wilhelm's University Muenster, Phytowelt Greentechnologies (Nettetal/Cologne) and Autodisplay, Düsseldorf. The project will create the basis for the exploitation of plant enzyme systems in industrial production. AELMON stands for “Artificial Electron transfer and plant Mono-oxyginases as basis for innovative catalytic systems.” The scientific justification for this project is the desire for an enhanced industrial use of plant enzymes of the P450 family. These enzymes have been well known for their outstanding features for a long time, which have not been accessible for economic exploitation in industrial synthesis. “Collaboration in this project offers the opportunity to position our Autodisplay technology as a solution for the production of enzymes, which are difficult to handle, such as the P450 enzymes,” says Dr. Ruth Maas, CEO of Autodisplay Biotech. For Phytowelt's company strategy of making the most of its extensive know-how of plant biotechnology for new, sometimes surprising fields of application, AELMON constitutes an important landmark. “The special subject of this project acts as an interface between Green and White biotechnology. It may lead to the exploitation of totally new value chains,” comments Dr. Peter Welters, CEO of Phytowelt, the project. Within the project a special emphasis will be placed on the biosynthesis of a certain terpen, which has gained attention in cancer research due to its potent pharmacological properties. Another sub-project will investigate new methods for the synthesis of building blocks for innovative plastics with premium properties. Particular innovation potential of AELMON lies in a novel method for the production of P450 enzymes, provided by the project partners University of Muenster and Autodisplay, and in the development of a novel biotechnological method using electro chemistry. This combination of electro chemistry and bio-catalysis is a focal point of research of the DECHEMA. Its goal is the design of sustainable production processes with P450 monooxygenases. For the time being AELMON is planned for a duration of three years. The Kick-off meeting took place Dec. 19th 2011. Phytowelt GreenTechnologies GmbH is a company in the newly developing area of industrial plant biotechnology (Green Chemistry and Green Energy, CleanTech Industry), which has the objective of achieving optimized use of plants for industrial production processes. Depending on the task, plants are used as raw material (recyclable material), as production organisms or as models for process innovations (bionics and synthetic biology). Phytowelt has developed the expertise - particularly for the provision of enzymes for value-increasing syntheses and genes for microbial biosyntheses - to make a rich selection of plant enzyme reactions accessible to customers in fermentation technology. We are continuously improving sustainability of production processes by conversion to renewable raw materials with innovative enzyme systems, metabolones and fermentation processes. We also work to specifically improve plants as renewable energy carriers and suppliers of renewable resources with state-of-the-art breeding technologies, e.g. marker-assisted protoplast fusion.

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