ROBOX: Expanding the industrial use of Robust Oxidative Biocatalysts for the conversion and production of alcohols
Oxygen functionalities are key functional groups in many of today’s chemicals and materials. The efficient introductions of oxygen-functionalities into raw materials are key chemical transformations in bulk and fine chemicals. Innovative bio-catalytic oxidation routes using molecular oxygen (from air) under benign and mild (pH) conditions such as ambient temperature and pressure can greatly improve the sustainability and economics of processes, but are so far mainly been applied in the pharma segments. In this segment, the enzyme-catalyzed step often represents the highest added value and the high price of the end-product (> €1000/kg) justifies less than optimal enzyme production and limitations in its catalytic efficiency. In order to achieve the widening of industrial application of enzymatic bio-oxidation processes to also larger volume but lower price chemical markets, ROBOX will demonstrate the techno-economic viability of bio-transformations of four types of robust oxidative enzymes: P450 monooxygenases (P450s), Baeyer-Villiger MonoOxygenase (BVMOs), Alcohol DeHydrogenase (ADH) and Alcohol OXidase (AOX) for which target reactions have already been validated on lab-scale in pharma, nutrition, fine & specialty chemicals and materials applications.
The introduction of ROBOX bio-oxidation processes is expected to bring substantial reductions in cost (up to -50%), energy use (-60%), chemicals (-16%) and GHG-emissions (-50%).
“The research for this work has received funding from the European Union (EU) project ROBOX (grant agreement n° 635734) under EU’s Horizon 2020 Programme Research and Innovation actions H2020-LEIT BIO-2014-1”