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Bioprospection and production of non-ribosomal peptides and L-asparaginase by microbial fermentation

Grant number: 15/21060-7
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): January 01, 2016
Effective date (End): December 31, 2016
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Chemistry
Principal researcher:Augusto Etchegaray Junior
Grantee:Gilberto Quirino dos Santos Junior
Home Institution: Centro de Ciências Exatas, Ambientais e de Tecnologias. Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Campinas (PUC-CAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil


Non ribosomal peptides, amongst which there are some lipopeptides known as biosurfactants, are known for their applications in environmental remediation and in medicine. However, their production is not economically viable, requiring the development of strategies to reduce the costs such as cultivation in cheaper culture media and the recovery of additional biotechnological resources that could be extracted concomitantly. Within these resources there are hydrolytic (digestive) enzymes such as alpha-amilase, lipase, celulase and proteases that are segregated in the broth within the biosurfactant extract. In addition to those digestive enzymes there are others such as L-asparaginase, an important drug for the medical field. L-asparaginase (L-asparagine hidrolase, EC, has applications in two main sectors: in the medical and food industry. In food industry it has been used to reduce the contamination of food with acrylamide, a suspect carcinogen. In the medical field, asparaginase is used to treat acute lymphoblastic leukemia. The production of asparaginase involves the cultivation of microorganisms such as Escherichia coli and Erwinia chrysanthemi. The enzyme from E. coli presents risks of anaphylactic chock to the patient due to the development of antibodies. The search for L-asparaginase from other sources is important since it is necessary to produce an enzyme that does not induce allergic reactions, that presents a high degree of purity and which is not active on L-glutamine, an aminoacid that is required for brain function. Considering the need of this enzyme in the medical field and its importance for Brazilian population, and also considering that some strains of Bacillus and actinomycetes are producers, we propose the search for non ribosomal and asparaginase producing lineages as a strategy to lower the production costs of biosurfactants/antibiotics by the coproduction of biosurfactants and enzymes.

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