Synthetic enzymes for synthetic substrates
September 24-28, 2017
In recent years, hydrolases like cutinases, esterases and lipases have been recognized as powerful tools for hydrolysis of synthetic polymers such as polyethylene terephthalate (PET) as an environmentally friendly alternative for environmentally harmful chemical recycling methods1. PET is currently the most common type of aromatic polyester, with widespread application as packaging material, beverage bottles, and synthetic textile fibers. So far, cutinases have been the most active enzyme class regarding PET degradation. In nature, cutinases catalyze the hydrolysis of the aliphatic biopolyester cutin, the structural component of plant cuticle. Although cutinases are able to act on natural insoluble polyesters, their activities on non-natural substrates are quit low. For this reason, different engineering strategies were established to optimize “polyesterases” for synthetic polymers (Fig.1). Thereby, development of rationale enzyme-engineering strategies led to remarkable enhancement of hydrolytic activities on polyesters and clearly showed that the affinity between the enzyme and the substrate plays a key role in the enzymatic hydrolysis of synthetic polyester.
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Doris Ribitsch, Sabine Zitzenbacher, Georg Steinkellner, Birgit Wiltschi, Enrique Herrero Acero, Karl Gruber, and Georg M. Guebitz, "Synthetic enzymes for synthetic substrates" in "Enzyme Engineering XXIV", Pierre Monsan, Toulouse White Biotechnology, France Magali Remaud-Simeon, LISBP-INSA, University of Toulouse, France Eds, ECI Symposium Series, (2017). https://dc.engconfintl.org/enzyme_xxiv/110