The aim of the proposed DISCO project is to develop more efficient and therefore more cost-effective cellulosic and hemicellulosic enzyme tools for the enhanced hydrolysis of pre-treated lignocellulosic biomass in simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF) conditions for bioethanol production. The focus will be on enzymes having increased catalytic activity on various types of relevant European lignocellulosic biomass. In addition enzymes with lower affinity for lignin shall also be developed. Such enzymes would increase the effective amount of cellulases/ hemicellulases for cellulose hydrolysis. Furthermore the recycling of these enzymes would be applicable. The approach in this proposal is to discover the desired activities by combining classical and modern screening technologies. The enzymes will be produced in suitable host systems for industrial enzyme production. The project also focuses on elucidation of enzymatic hydrolysis mechanisms, about which there is a paucity of knowledge. The project will determine the limiting structural factors in these mechanisms by characterisation of the substrate during the course of the hydrolysis and the remaining recalcitrant residue. Synergy between different cellulase and hemicellulases components will also be addresses on the chosen lignocellulosic substrates. Furthermore, the project seeks to demonstrate the proof of concept with the cellulolytic enzymes in a pilot scale using the most relevant European feedstock pretreated wheat straw and related high-volume co-products.
Fields of science
Call for proposal
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Funding SchemeCP-FP - Small or medium-scale focused research project