Grant recipient

Ditte Welner

GlycoExtreme: Glycosyltransferases from extremophiles as robust biocatalysts
Grant amount: DKK 9.834.103

Enzymes can be used to produce many of the things that our society needs with low environmental footprint compared to producing the same thing with conventional chemical methods. UGTs are enzymes that can attach a sugar molecule to a cosmetic ingredient, dye, food ingredient, and other chemicals, thereby increasing the water solubility and stability. However, most UGTs cannot withstand the conditions present in industrial processes, so it becomes very expensive and unsustainable to use them. But nature has a place to look for stable enzymes: the extremophiles. These are organisms living in extreme environments such as geysers, the arctic, the desert, or deep down in the sea. They have evolved to withstand these hard conditions, and so have their enzymes. This project discovers novel, robust enzymes from extremophiles, and uses these to learn something about what control an enzymes robustness. The project will also develop low-impact biosolutions.

Ditte Welner
Senior Researcher, Ph.D.
DTU Biosustain, Technical University of Denmark