New pathways for sustainable terpene materials from wood
September 15-19, 2019
Polymers play an essential role in everyday life as materials in automotive, packaging and electronics to compounds in medicine. Nevertheless, the finite supply of fossil fuels and lacking biodegradability of most synthetic polymers leads to an increased need for the development of more sustainable materials from renewable sources. The use of renewable natural products from forestry, especially hemicellulose and terpenes,1 offers a highly versatile platform for green building blocks. By using Nature’s own biofunctionalizations, enzymes can be used as green catalysts for the valorization of abundant terpenes from pine wood extractives. Enzymatic biotransformations enable mild processes for “activating” inert molecular building blocks to afford renewable monomers. By combining in vitro synthetic biology and polymer chemistry, we have generated a new bio based polymer starting from, a naturally abundantterpene found in wood. Specifically, acrylation of the terpene Sobrerol, which can be achieved§ both enzymatically and by using traditional chemistry, constituted a suitable synthon for Atom Transfer Radical Polymerization (ATRP); a common and widely used, controlled polymerization technique. Furthermore, we demonstrate that sobrerol can be generated from other abundant monoterpenes using P450-based biocatalysis.
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Arne Stamm, Mattias Tengdelius, Linda Fogelström, Eva Malmström, Per-Olof Syren, and Björn Schmidt, "New pathways for sustainable terpene materials from wood" in "Enzyme Engineering XXV", Huimin Zhao, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA John Wong, Pfizer, USA Eds, ECI Symposium Series, (2019). https://dc.engconfintl.org/enzyme_xxv/85