ESR 4 - Development of an integrated microfluidic biocatalytic reactor system

Host: UCL; Supervisors: Frank Baganz, Nicolas Szita, Helen Hailes

  • Fabricate microfluidic plug and play assembly for immobilised and non-immobilised biocatalyst systems
  • Establish TK non-immobilised and immobilised microreactor systems. Develop a- biocatalyst immobilisation strategy suitable for cartridge-like rapid exchange of enzyme supports into a microfluidic reactor.
  • Define strategy for non-immobilised or immobilised system selection w.r.t. biocatalyst performance using TK, TAm, glycosyl-transferases variants.
  • Develop microfluidic reactors with advanced immobilisation strategies
  • Combine with sensor technology integration from ESR3 and study compatibility with cell-free and cell-based approaches
  • Define design criteria for the cartridge-like exchange of biocatalysts
Tasks and methodology
  • Investigate different modular microfluidic assemblies, related micro fabrication methods, and develop a platform technology for reactor fabrication
  • Together with TUG investigate suitable immobilisation strategies for different biocatalysts
  • Together with MICROFLUIDIC and Micronit investigate mass fabrication strategies
  • Rigorous analysis of space time yields coupled with analysis of biocatalyst activity per unit volume; reaction parameters for use in the immobilised and solubilised enzyme microreactors (temperature, residence time, solvent usage) will be established to achieve maximum conversion and purity; benchmark against batch/bench-scale reactions (in collaboration with CerCell)
  • Analyse design parameters and variations
  • Integrate all components on single modular platform
  • IMER for rapid determination of kinetic parameters of single enzyme variants
  • Microfluidic platform for chemical and enzymatic reactions, amenable for different immobilization methods (with UCL ESR 3)
  • Report on mass fabrication strategy for selected chemo-enzymatic reactor(s)
  • Evaluation of immobilization methods suitable for wide range of biocatalysts and for multi-enzyme and chemo-enzymatic process conditions completed (with UCL ESR 3)
  • Biotransformation yields for enzyme variants of TK, TAm and glycosyl-transferases established and compared with batch reactions.