The research of the Institute of Food Chemistry and Food Biotechnology spans a bridge between food chemical phenomena and industrial applications. The focus of the scientific work lies on enzymes of basidiomycetes, the most developed fungi. Due to their special catalytic properties an the high process stability these enzymes are suitable for various applicarions in the food biotechnology as well as for the enzymatic digestion of renewable raw materials. Another research focus are analytics and biotechnological extraction of natural aromas.
An essential requirement for the industrial implementation of novel biotochnological processes is the availability of efficient and stable biocatalysts. Especially the most developed mushrooms (basidiomycetes), which feature an unique and until now industrially little used biochemical potential, serve as a source of suchlike enzymes for the Institute of Food Chemistry and Food Biotechnology
In the cycle of nature, difficult to access lignin and terpene-rich biopolymers are almost exclusively converted by Basidiomycetes. Therefore, the usage of enzymes of this species, which also includes most of the known edible mushrooms, for numerois new biotechnological applications is especially promising.
Based on an extensive, qualitative and quantitative proteom and secretome analysis novel enzymes form cell cultures of basidiomycetes are isolated, biochemically characterized and the coded genes are cloned. By heterologous expression and directed mutagenesis the desired properties for the respective application can be optimized
New strategies for technical enzyme preparation
By choosing suitable culture parameters the enzyme production in surface and submerged cultures of basidiomycetes can be controlled and specifically optimized. For the usage in technical processes it is often necessary to concentrate and at least to partially purify the enzym fractions formed. This can be achieved particluary eficcient and cost-effective with extracellular fungal enzymes through isoelectrocally focussed foaming ("adsorptive bubble separation").
In cooperation with partners from large and medium-sized industries, processes in the field of "white biotechnology" and food biotechnology are developed. The focus here is on the biotechnological production of functional food ingredients (including natural flavorings) and the enzymatic utilization of renewable raw materials.