Identifying novel enzymes for the modification of an industrially produced polysaccharide
Novel enzymes that can selectively degrade and modify glycan structures (glycoenzymes) are increasingly needed by industry and biotechnologists to access the full potential of saccharide-based bioproducts.
SAMS, in conjunction with the Scottish-based SME, Glycomar Ltd, are collaborating to develop a suite of novel enzymes that can selectively degrade and modify a structurally unique, high molecular weight polysaccharide product that Glycomar Ltd are developing.
The challenge is that each unique polysaccharide structure requires enzymes that have matching substrate specificity. The question then becomes one of how to identify these unique enzymes? To do this, we will use Glycomar’s polysaccharide as a ‘bait’ to isolate a unique bacterial culture collection that can utilise this polysaccharide as a sole carbon and energy source. HPLC-SEC and enzyme assays will be used identify the most desirable candidates. The selected bacteria will have their whole genomes sequenced and CAZy active enzymes identified using in-house bioinformatics routines. Enzymes common across the diverse genomes will be the target for protein expression and further enzymatic characterisation.