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Microbial deployment of new-to-nature chemistries for refactoring the barriers between living and non-living matter

Objective

This Project is about bringing a suite of chemical reactions (and its related non-biological compounds and elements) to the biological fold (i.e. their 'biologization') by going beyond the Central Dogma of Molecular Biology (DNA→ RNA→ proteins→ metabolism) through both tuning and overcoming the uni-directionality of the information flow. To reverse-engineer reactions into a biological code, the utility function of the chemical process of interest will be progressively coupled to the fitness function of a live carrier (e.g. an engineered, synthetic or cyborg-ized bacterial chassis), the intermediate steps being supported by automated chemo-robots. The new-to-nature reactions (NTN) pursued within the MADONNA lifetime as case studies will include CO2 capture and recruitment of elemental silicon to become part of essential organo-Si metabolites. Along with the development of the new reactions, the research agenda of the Project will also include the [i] modelling and prediction on the impact of the new biotransformations on the overall functioning of the Biosphere once/if adopted at a large scale by the industrial sector and [ii] design of environmental simulators for evaluating the performance and evolution of the new biological reactions under given physico-chemical settings. With such approaches, MADONNA aims to fill many of the gaps between the 3 types of global-scale processing of chemical elements operating in our planet: Geochemical, Biological and Industrial. The scale of applications of the foundational technologies developed herein (which spin themselves much beyond CO2 and silicon) is unprecedented and a large number of societal ramifications including ethical, security, safety, economic, governance and public perceptions aspects at stake will be included. If successful, MADONNA will enable an entirely new type of sustainable industry in which many types of waste become assets instead of liabilities.

Field of science

  • /natural sciences/chemical sciences/inorganic chemistry/inorganic compounds
  • /natural sciences/biological sciences/molecular biology

Call for proposal

H2020-FETOPEN-1-2016-2017
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

RIA - Research and Innovation action

Coordinator

AGENCIA ESTATAL CONSEJO SUPERIOR DEINVESTIGACIONES CIENTIFICAS
Address
Calle Serrano 117
28006 Madrid
Spain
Activity type
Research Organisations
EU contribution
€ 526 713,75

Participants (8)

EIDGENOESSISCHE TECHNISCHE HOCHSCHULE ZUERICH
Switzerland
EU contribution
€ 439 327,50
Address
Raemistrasse 101
8092 Zuerich
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
UNIVERSITAT BASEL
Switzerland
EU contribution
€ 429 413,75
Address
Petersplatz 1
4051 Basel
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Isthmus
France
EU contribution
€ 327 500
Address
Rue Saint Amand 31
75015 Paris
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
UNIVERSITE PIERRE ET MARIE CURIE - PARIS 6

Participation ended

France
EU contribution
€ 0
Address
Place Jussieu 4
75252 Paris
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
SORBONNE UNIVERSITE
France
EU contribution
€ 100 227,50
Address
21 Rue De L'ecole De Medecine
75006 Paris
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
UNIVERSITY OF GLASGOW
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 421 875
Address
University Avenue
G12 8QQ Glasgow
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
UNIVERSIDAD POMPEU FABRA
Spain
EU contribution
€ 313 450
Address
Placa De La Merce, 10-12
08002 Barcelona
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
BIOFACTION KG
Austria
EU contribution
€ 410 310
Address
Kundmanngasse 39/12
1030 Wien
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)