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Green Processing and Synthesis

Editor-in-Chief: Hessel, Volker / Tran, Nam Nghiep

Editorial Board: Akay, Galip / Arends, Isabel W.C.E. / Cann, Michael C. / Cheng, Yi / Cravotto, Giancarlo / Gruber-Wölfler, Heidrun / Kralisch, Dana / D. P. Nigam, Krishna / Saha, Basudeb / Serra, Christophe A. / Zhang, Wei


IMPACT FACTOR 2018: 1.128

CiteScore 2018: 0.97

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.263
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.366

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Online
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2191-9550
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Volume 3, Issue 4

Issues

Enzymicals AG: biocatalytic processes from lab scale to stable process at the pilot scale

Ute Liebelt
Published Online: 2014-06-20 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/gps-2014-0038

The importance of biocatalytic processes is steadily increasing in sustainable and resource-efficient chemistry. Biocatalytic processes are successfully used in a number of areas of chemistry, but there are other fields in chemistry where biocatalytic processes are possible in principle but currently there are no processes which are robust enough and suitable for industry. On the other hand, a broad range of reaction platforms catalyzed by enzymes are waiting to be used. In many cases the bottlenecks are the result of the upscaling procedures between proof of concept and applicable processes. This makes it difficult for biocatalysis to gain a foothold in new areas although much can be improved by this new technologies. It is our goal to overcome this challenge and to build a bridge between academic research and industrial application by efficient piloting/up-scaling of bioprocesses.

History

Enzymicals AG was founded in August 2009 as a spin-off from the Biotechnology and Enzyme Catalysis group of Prof. Uwe T. Bornscheuer at the University of Greifswald. The scientists and developers of Enzymicals have created a customer- and industry-oriented platform for the development and piloting of biocatalytic synthesis routes for high-value fine chemicals as well as for bulk products, which bridges the gap between academic research and the industrial application.

The company focuses on the three business segments Enzymes (production of biocatalysts), Chemicals (synthesis of fine and special chemicals) and Solutions (customer-specific contract research, process development, upscaling of processes from the laboratory to pilot scale).

Together with the investors BRAIN AG and BBG “Braun Beteiligungs GmbH”, to which the API-producer Herbrandt Pharma-Chemicals also belongs, the three German partners aspire to be a strategically very useful network of companies in fine chemicals. This cooperation offers everything: from identification and improvement of enzymes to reaction and process development, from production to distribution. BRAIN AG identifies new enzymes. Enzymicals AG handles application and process development of biocatalytic processes for chemical and pharmaceutical products and process orientated enzyme optimization. As the final step, there is Herbrand PharmaChemicals GmbH’s biocatalytic production of active pharmaceutical ingredients in compliance with cGMP. This company alliance represents a unique network, from new enzymes to chemical/pharmaceutical products produced with biocatalysis (including the option to handle the complete drug manufacturing including all regulatory affairs within the network).

Furthermore Enzymicals AG cooperates with a number of other companies and institutes. One of the most important collaborations is the cooperation with the working group of Prof. Uwe T. Bornscheuer at University in Greifswald.

Our customers come from different fields of the industry with applications, e.g., in pharma, flavoring and nutrition, polymer, diagnostic and also in food production.

Biotechnikum Greifswald, Germany.

Products

The product range includes three segments: enzymes, chemicals and solutions.

Enzymes

Together with the network partners our service covers the whole value chain towards a tailor-made enzyme for a special application: identification, expression, characterization, improvement and application in a production process.

We offer a broad selection of enzymes suitable for research and development, production and diagnostics. A selection of enzymes which are manufactured in-house is offered in a catalogue and via collaboration with Sigma-Aldrich. The majority of our available enzymes are exclusively used for internal customer projects. This also includes enzymes that are provided by our network partners.

Enzymicals AG itself has a unique feature. e.g., in collections of recombinant pig liver esterases, (R)-selective amine transaminases, Baeyer-Villiger monooxygenases and halohydrine dehalogenases.

Chemicals

The second important area is the production and custom manufacturing of fine and special chemicals.

Example for a ready-to-use screening kit containing enzymes and reagents.

We focus on chiral building blocks such as secondary and tertiary alcohols, carboxylic acids, lactones, esters and amines. We develop biocatalytic synthetic routes for customers’ desired compounds. We use a combination of classic chemical conversion and biocatalytic reaction routes to meet qualitative and economic demands of customers.

Currently we produce chemicals on individual requests from customers.

Solutions

Enzymicals AG is experienced to answer specific questions about enzymes and their application in biocatalytic production processes.

The goal is a robust and economical biocatalytic process which we can transfer to the pilot plant of the customer.

We provide a custom research and manufacturing service for enzymes as well as chemicals which includes the route scouting for biotransformation with regard to the synthesis of desired compounds, feasibility studies, process development and production up to the kg-scale.

Our technology platform in the range of biocatalysts covers identification of novel enzymes from strain collections and metagenome libraries, their cloning, the functional expression in a range of microbial hosts and protein engineering tools. The upscaling or piloting of fermentation processes is carried out up to the 100 l scale.

Whereas biochemical conversions of chemicals are scaled up to 50 l reactor volume, all chemical-technological purification steps for the products are included. When requested we accompany the transfer of the process either directly to the customer or to a contract manufacturer.

Tailor-made biotransformations offered by Enzymicals AG .

CEO of Enzymicals AG: Dr. Ulf Menyes.

Staff

Enzymicals AG is characterized by short decision paths and high flexibility. Our biologists, biotechnologists, synthesis chemists, process chemists and marketing specialists work closely together. The teamwork in such interdisciplinary teams leads to efficient and high quality solutions. Currently our team consists of 14 members. Additionally we provide a limited number of topics and workstations for Bachelor or Master thesis.

Future

In the future we hope to continue our successful path together with our partners.

We strive to serve the needs of our customers, to accompany them to successful applications in large scale and to launch the products which are in development pipelines. Another key task now and in the future is to transfer current research results to products, to protect them through patents and place these as products or services on the market. These developments focus on the implementation of biocatalysts for efficient production processes.

Already this year we have submitted two patent applications for an enzymatic biooxidation process and a large toolbox of novel lyases. Our catalogue will reflect these developments by offering a selection of our unique biocatalysts. In the solutions segment we combine our experiences from the other segments to develop and pilot processes which are suitable for industrial application and will expand our chemical kg-lab with significant large scale equipment. Our strong collaboration with Herbrand PharmaChemicals GmbH has led us to include regulatory affair activities in our service and to accompany the customer from development through to approval of a compound of interest.

You can meet us at Gordon Conference (Bryant University Smithfield, RI, USA 06.07.-11.07.14), Biocat 2014 – 7th International Congress on Biocatalysis (Hamburg 31.08.-04.09.14), CPHI 2014, Stand 6P93SSP (Paris 07.10.-09.10.14), EcoChem 2014, Stand Innovation Pod (Basel 11.11.-13.11.14).

For more information, see www.enzymicals.com.

About the article

Corresponding author: Ute Liebelt, Enzymicals AG, Walther-Rathenau-Straße 49a, 17489 Greifswald, Germany, e-mail:


Published Online: 2014-06-20

Published in Print: 2014-08-01


Citation Information: Green Processing and Synthesis, Volume 3, Issue 4, Pages 287–289, ISSN (Online) 2191-9550, ISSN (Print) 2191-9542, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/gps-2014-0038.

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