Next Article in Journal
Dry Anaerobic Digestion of Food and Paper Industry Wastes at Different Solid Contents
Next Article in Special Issue
Basidiomycotic Yeast Cryptococcus diffluens Converts l-Galactonic Acid to the Compound on the Similar Metabolic Pathway in Ascomycetes
Previous Article in Journal
Preliminary Screening of Growth and Viability of 10 Strains of Bifidobacterium spp.: Effect of Media Composition
Open AccessReview

Four Challenges for Better Biocatalysts

School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences, University of Brighton, Huxley Building, Lewes Road, Brighton BN2 4GJ, UK
Fermentation 2019, 5(2), 39; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation5020039
Received: 15 April 2019 / Revised: 7 May 2019 / Accepted: 7 May 2019 / Published: 9 May 2019
Biocatalysis (the use of biological molecules or materials to catalyse chemical reactions) has considerable potential. The use of biological molecules as catalysts enables new and more specific syntheses. It also meets many of the core principles of “green chemistry”. While there have been some considerable successes in biocatalysis, the full potential has yet to be realised. This results, partly, from some key challenges in understanding the fundamental biochemistry of enzymes. This review summarises four of these challenges: the need to understand protein folding, the need for a qualitative understanding of the hydrophobic effect, the need to understand and quantify the effects of organic solvents on biomolecules and the need for a deep understanding of enzymatic catalysis. If these challenges were addressed, then the number of successful biocatalysis projects is likely to increase. It would enable accurate prediction of protein structures, and the effects of changes in sequence or solution conditions on these structures. We would be better able to predict how substrates bind and are transformed into products, again leading to better enzyme engineering. Most significantly, it may enable the de novo design of enzymes to catalyse specific reactions. View Full-Text
Keywords: protein folding; enzyme engineering; hydrophobic effect; chaotropicity; enzyme mechanism; water activity; green chemistry; enzyme specificity; biotechnology; protein structure protein folding; enzyme engineering; hydrophobic effect; chaotropicity; enzyme mechanism; water activity; green chemistry; enzyme specificity; biotechnology; protein structure
MDPI and ACS Style

Timson, D.J. Four Challenges for Better Biocatalysts. Fermentation 2019, 5, 39.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop