Scope and targets
The BioUPGRADE project exploits biocatalysts to tailor natural biopolymers for use in high-value bio-based materials that leverage naturally fixed energy and carbon dioxide. Biocatalytic routes to bio-fiber modification are not part of today's industrial process technologies; however, they have been identified as critical to replacing petroleum-based textiles and thermoplastics. In the BioUPGRADE project, biopolymers from natural resources that are abundant and renewable, such as hemicellulose, cellulose and chitin, will be transformed into resource-efficient materials designed for partner-driven applications.
BioUPGRADE will apply advances in computational biology to mine escalating genomic and proteomic datasets; introduce a bio-customize framework that stretches beyond current synthetic biology concepts; and establish a structure-function matrix for tailored biopolymers and new assemblies.
KEY PROJECT DELIVERABLES INCLUDE:
1) application-driven functional screens critical to breakthroughs in biotechnologies for materials engineering
2) a toolbox of surface-acting proteins and enzymes designed for bio-based materials engineering
3) protocols for controlled assembly of tailored biopolymers into fully bio-based materials, from sustainable textiles to personal health products.