The development of processes for the utilisation of renewable resources is one of the main challenges of our society. Autotrophic fermentations, in which CO2 is converted into biomass, constitute a strategy towards sustainable carbon-cycle economy. In its cutting-edge research project, SI-MEPSI will combine biotechnological and chemical approaches to create an efficient route from CO2 fixation to the production of fine chemicals. In the first stage, SI-MEPSI will optimise H2/O2/CO2-based autotrophic fermentations with Ralstonia eutropha to develop an industrial production of stable-isotope-labelled (SI-labelled) RNA under non-explosive conditions. To achieve this objective, a thorough investigation into the dependence of the growth rate on physicochemical parameters, particularly the pressure, will be performed. Subsequently, the obtained SI-labelled RNA products will be employed as building blocks in a three-step, chemo-enzymatic synthesis of novel SI(2H/13C/15N)-labelled N1-methylpseudouridine (m1Ψ) compounds – important targets in the context of RNA stability studies and NMR structural analysis. Preparation of SI-labelled m1Ψ compounds with a range of site-specific isotopic patterns will rely on a modular methodology that introduces SI-labels into the target molecules at three different points. To maximise the efficiency of the research and facilitate knowledge transfer, the fermentation studies will take place at a biotechnology company in Germany, while the chemo-enzymatic synthesis will be carried out at a university in Austria. In addition, a dedicated training program within an already existing EU ITN will further increase the visibility of the applicant and reinforce his career prospects in the EU. Through targeted dissemination activities, SI-MEPSI will also enhance the competitiveness of sustainable industrial autotrophic processes in the European Biotechnology sector, create new job opportunities, and inspire young students to pursue a scientific career.
Fields of science
- HORIZON.1.2 - Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) Main Programme