The department of Pharmaceutical Biology (Prof.dr. Gerrit J. Poelarends) of the Groningen Research Institute of Pharmacy (GRIP) has received a 726 k€ grant from the European Union as part of an international consortium. The international project will develop sustainable industrial processes based on a carbon-carbon (C-C) bond-forming enzyme platform. The project will start in April 2015 and includes the participation of 14 enterprises and research centers from 5 different countries. The project will be funded by the European Union over the course of four years with a total budget of more than 8 million euro. During its course, the project will develop the biocatalytic synthesis of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and bulk chemicals using unique C-C bond-forming enzymes.
Industrial chemical processes carried out through “classic” chemistry and catalysis often involve the use of hazardous substances and considerable amounts of energy. In contrast, enzymes catalyze the natural “manufacture and modification” of molecules with exquisite selectivity, unparalleled rate acceleration and under mild reaction conditions. Thus, the application of enzymes to catalyze industrial reactions (“biocatalysis”) has the potential to improve chemical processes in compliance with the concept and principles of Green Chemistry. C-C bond-forming reactions are at the heart of industrial organic synthesis, but remain largely unexplored due to long development timelines and the lack of broad biocatalytic reaction platforms.
Contact: Prof.dr. G.J. (Gerrit) Poelarends
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