07 juin 2017
Artificial metabolic pathways for bio-based isobutene
As of today, most industrial bio-processes are based on naturally occurring metabolic pathways, preventing the access to many of the chemistry’s largest market. For example, the development of bio-processes for the efficient production of light olefins remains a technological challenge. Since these molecules are not synthesized by natural microorganisms, the design of a complete metabolic pathway for their production is hampered by the lack of identified enzymes able to perform the crucial reaction step.
The purpose of Global Bioenergies is to develop innovative metabolic routes for the bio-production of light olefins, with isobutene being the first target. In order to bridge the gap between natural metabolites and the final product, Global Bioenergies has engineered artificial biocatalysts, and combined them with natural enzymes into metabolic pathways. Thus, the new metabolic routes leading to isobutene involve non-naturally occurring reactions and non-canonical metabolic intermediates.
The scale-up of this bio-based isobutene production process is currently ongoing. Our first pilot plant is running since 2014 in Pomacle (France), with a capacity of 10 tons/year of oxidation-grade isobutene. Several samples of bio-based isobutene or isooctane derived from bio-isobutene have been delivered to Arkema, Arlanxeo, Audi and to CFBP (a French organization representing gas supply companies), and the process yield has now reached more than 70% of target commercial yield at pilot scale. The construction of the Leuna demo plant (Germany) with a capacity of 100 tons/year of polymer-grade isobutene is now completed.
Speaker : Dr. Macha Anissimova - Chief Scientific Officer - Global Bioenergies SA
Dr. Macha Anissimova (f) is CSO at GBE. She obtained a PhD from the Université de Technologie de Compiègne (UTC, France) in 1999 with specialty in Enzyme Engineering, Bioconversion and Microbiology. Dr. Anissimova has since acquired unique expertise in enzymology and metabolic engineering in both public (French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA), Chemistry of Natural Substances Institute (ICSN, CNRS)) and private establishments. She joined Global Bioenergies in April 2009 and is co-inventor of several patents and patent applications.