Biocatalysis - a new pathway to polymeric materials

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hence, contributes to the development of Interview Dr. A. Heise, DSM Reseach BV
Eddy Brinkman, Edvertice Presentaties
Chemo-enzymatic polymerisation at DPI
Biocatalysis - a new pathway to
"At DPI, in a cooperation between DSM polymeric materials?
processes, preferably in a one-pot reaction.
[project 381] Enzymes are catalysts, created
We want to make use of the "best of both by nature itself. Biological processes that
worlds": integrate the enzymatic technology take place in living organisms are chemical
into existing polymer chemistry. Parts of the reactions, and many of them are regulated
traditional polymer chemistry will be replaced by by enzymes. Enzymes do a successful
enzymatic technology. The aim is to obtain new job - millions of years of evolution is proof
material designs using this "chemo-enzymatic enough. Many enzymes can be used to
polymerisation" approach. In the recent past, catalyse not only their natural substrates
we succeeded in combining 'enzymatic' ring but a broad range of other, unnatural
opening polymerisation and 'chemical' nitroxide compounds. Combined with their ability
mediated living free radical polymerisation. to synthesise macromolecules, this makes
enzymes potentially ideal catalysts also in
This true one-pot reaction is a method to polymer chemistry. During the Annual DPI
synthesise block copolymers in a metal-free Meeting 2003 of November 27, Dr. Andreas
fashion. After this 'proof of principle', we are Heise (DSM Research and part time TU/e)
extending our chemo-enzymatic polymerisation gave a presentation on the use of enzymes
approach to obtain new functional polymers in polymer synthesis. His view on
biocatalysis, enzymes and polymer
develop the technology towards a kinetic chemistry is given here.
Candida Antarctica Lipase B (CALB) enzyme, immobilised inspherical particles Cephalexin. The traditional (bio)chemical Biocatalysis
synthesis comprises multiple steps, whereas The use of biocatalytic processes in a non- the new fully biocatalytic process is a combi- natural environment has a long tradition in nation of only two steps. In the biocatalytic food industry. Prominent examples are the process no protection and deprotection steps fermentation of wine or brewing of beer where of reactive side groups are needed. Heise: the enzymes inside micro organisms are the "This example of the biocatalytic antibiotic active components. Biocatalysis is also applied synthesis can teach us what is possible in the on industrial scale in chemistry, again using future with polymers, since the application of entire living cells, which requires separating biocatalysis in fine chemicals is ahead of the Does the future for producing polymers in a the product from reaction batches. This brings polymer field. Consequently, industrial bio- biocatalytical way look bright? "Indeed", says up the question: why not use only the active catalysis found its way into the polymer world Heise. "McKinsey estimates that biotechnology component of the cell: the enzyme, as stand- can be applied in the production of 10 to 20% alone catalyst? According to Heise, enzymes (11 to 22 billion euros) of all chemicals sold by have a lot of advantages, and these can be 2010. For the fine chemical segment this may utilised to synthesise materials that are not Precision polymer synthesis
be up to 60%. The application in the large easily available by conventional techniques.
"The use of enzymes as catalyst provides a totally new way of polymer synthesis; most of started and first products are commercialised.
Enzymes as catalyst
these polymers are otherwise very difficult to For the future development of biotechnology in The potential of enzymes and their commercial synthesise by conventional chemical catalysts.
availability has lead to an exponential increase in Enzyme-catalysed polymer synthesis is there- importance: biocatalysis in the cost reduction of interest in the area of in-vitro enzyme-catalysed fore recognized as a new field of precision existing production processes, and biocatalysis organic reactions. The biocatalytic concept for the synthesis of new functional polymers.
was successfully adopted in recent years in enzymatic polymerisations the products can And this defines exactly the two areas of synthetic organic chemistry for the synthesis of be obtained under mild process conditions DPI's research associated with biocatalysis: chiral compounds for pharmaceutical products.
without using toxic reagents, this technology is Illustrative is the synthesis of the antibiotic regarded as environmentally friendly and,


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Pii: s0022-3999(02)00309-4

Journal of Psychosomatic Research 53 (2002) 873 – 876Central pathways to morbidity and mortalityJanice K. Kiecolt-Glasera,*, Ronald GlaserbaDepartment of Psychiatry, The Ohio State University College of Medicine, 1670 Upham Drive, Columbus, OH 43210, USAbDepartment of Molecular Virology, Immunology, and Medical Genetics, The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus, OH 43210,

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