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Advancements in Uncovering Novel Xylan Debranching Enzymes and Development of Fermentation Processes at TU Delft

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11 January 2024

Within the Enxylascope project, our partner, the Delft University of Technology, has played a pivotal role. They have achieved notable milestones in proteomics-based screening methods, contributing significantly to identifying and selecting new enzyme candidates. Their expertise has also been instrumental in the model-based development and optimisation of fermentation processes, which are crucial for scaling up the production of novel xylan debranching enzymes.


Significant strides have been taken in high-throughput proteomics screening methods to uncover new enzyme candidates from novel microbial sources. Employing advanced high-resolution analytical techniques, we’ve determined the activity and specificity of enzymes derived from Delft-grown production systems. Bhagyashree Swarge, the postdoctoral researcher at TU Delft driving omics approaches, was invited to present her groundbreaking work at the Netherlands Biotechnology Congress (NBC22).

Our team has parallel developed mathematical models through precise laboratory experiments to optimise fermentation processes for xylan debranching enzyme production. Leveraging computer simulations, we’ve designed effective fed-batch production processes for two distinct host strains, optimising enzyme production rate and yield.

Currently, we are rigorously testing these optimised processes for four different xylan debranching enzymes in 2-litre laboratory-scale bioreactors. We’re integrating large-scale proteomics and metabolomics data to enhance these models further to pinpoint potential expression bottlenecks in the new enzymes. Post-optimisation, we plan to scale up these processes to 20 litres and, in collaboration with METGEN, to pilot scale.