Enzymes are biological catalysts suitable for the development of a number of biotechnological applications, e.g., environmentally friendly industrial processes, innovative biomedical applications, exploitation of renewable resources, etc.. The discovery of novel enzymatic activities, as well as the improvement of existing enzyme properties through advanced protein engineering techniques, is a challenging opportunity.
Conventional screening techniques and high-throughput screening methods can be developed based on robotic systems and data handling softwares, as well as modern approaches based on genomes and metagenomics for the discovering of new enzymes. The search for microbial enzymes is a key step in the development of industrial bioprocesses, but we can currently culture less than 1% of the number of bacteria we believe are present in the environment. Metagenomics is an alternative approach to traditional microbial screening. A substantial challenge for genomic enzymology is the reliable annotation for proteins of unknown functions. On the other hand, properties of known enzymes can be improved through both rational and random-based protein engineering methods.
This School aim is to present the state-of-art and discuss advancements in the field of enzyme discovery.
Organizing and Scientific Committee (preliminary):
- Loredano Pollegioni – Università dell’Insubria
- Uwe Bornscheuer – Greifswald, Germany
- Menico Rizzi – Università del Piemonte Orientale
- Marco Moracci – Institute of Biosciences and BioResources, CNR Napoli
- Gianluca Molla – Università dell’Insubria