A technological chain for the development of antibacterial lysins against fermentation contaminants and infectious diseases

01 November 2021 → 31 October 2025
Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO)
Research disciplines
  • Natural sciences
    • Infectious diseases
  • Engineering and technology
    • Fermentation
    • Industrial biotechnology diagnostics
    • Industrial microbiology
Lysins as new antibacterials Bacterial contamination of fermentations Treatment of bacterial infections
Project description

Lysins are a broad class of bacteriophage-encoded, enzyme-based antibacterials with a new mode-of-action based on active peptidoglycan degradation. While initially considered for human healthcare only, the potential market of lysins has now been expanded to each sector where bacteria are undesired, including the fermentation industry that suffers significant yield and profit losses from recurrent bacterial contaminations. To leverage the broad but untapped potential of lysins, I will develop a technological chain based on yeast surface display and microfluidics techniques to generate and identify customized lysins targeting potentially any bacterial contaminant or pathogen. The technological chain will then be applied to create (i) yeast strains displaying lysins that eliminate Lactobacillus contaminants in bioethanol fermentations, and (ii) probiotic strains displaying lysins that target chronic Clostridioides difficile infections, highlighting the versatility of the envisaged technological chain for lysin development.