- AGENCIA ESTATAL CONSEJO SUPERIOR DE INVESTIGACIONES CIENTIFICAS (CSIC)
- CHALMERS TEKNISKA HÖGSKOLA AB (CHALMERS)
- DEUTSCHES INSTITUT FUER ERNAEHRUNGSFORSCHUNG POTSDAM REHBRUECKE (DIfE)
- UNIWERSYTET PRZYRODNICZY WE WROCŁAWIU (WU)
- UNIVERSITAET GREIFSWALD (UG)
- UNIVERSIDAD DE OVIEDO (UNIOVI)
- EXTRASYNTHESE SAS (EXSY)
- BIOPOLIS SL (BIO)
- EXPLORA SRL (EXP)
- SYMRISE AG (SYM)
- LIQUIFER SYSTEMS GROUP GMBH (LSG)
The CSIC (Spanish National Research Council) is Spain’s largest public research institution, and ranks third among Europe’s largest research organisations. CSIC is supported by the Spanish Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness, through the State Secretariat for Research, Development and Innovation. CSIC is a major player in the development of the European research area and therefore a significant contributor to the European integration process.
SynBio4Flav is led by the CSIC department of the National Biotechnology Centre (CNB) which is the leading Biological Research facility in the Public domain in Spain. Since its start in 1992, it has maintained very productive programs in Microbial Biotechnology, Structural Biology, Plant Molecular Biology, Molecular and Cellular Biology, Immunology, and Oncology.
CSIC serves as the project coordinator of SynBio4Flav. Furthermore, CNB of CSIS will construct optimized cell systems for overproducing main flavonoids precursors, through deep metabolic engineering, and new SynBioTools will be developed for the standardization of synthetic pathways, SMC assembling, and SMC modelling. Other contributions include; genetic engineering for the optimization of microbial chassis systems and SMC; expansion of the SEVA platform; universal metabolic flavonoid reconstruction; development of a web-based platform for flavonoid design based on SMC.
Chalmers University of Technology is a foundation university situated in Göteborg on the west coast of Sweden. Education and research are focused within life sciences, materials science, information technology, micro-and nanotechnology, environmental sciences, and energy. Chalmers has a strong tradition for collaborating with industry, enabling an extensive infrastructure for supporting the commercialization of research projects.
In SynBio4Flav, Chalmers will be represented by the Systems and Synthetic Biology group of the Department of Biology and Bioengineering. This group focuses on Life Science Engineering and is one of the world’s leading research groups in systems biology, metabolic engineering, and industrial biotechnology of S. cerevisiae. Research involves the development of new cell factories, using systems and synthetic biology tools, to produce different chemicals and fuels. The group is co-financed by the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability, which develops mammalian and microbial cell factories for various applications.
Chalmers will address the construction of yeast strains capable of overproducing central synthons and isoflavones and flavanols derived thereof from precursor molecules. Additionally, genome-scale single strain modelling will be performed.
The German Institute of Human Nutrition Potsdam-Rehbruecke (DIfE) is an independent research institute and member of the Leibniz Association, with the mission to conduct experimental and clinical research in the field of nutrition and health. The aim of this research is to understand the molecular basis of nutrition- dependent diseases and to develop new strategies for prevention, treatment, and nutritional recommendations. DIfE researchers focus on three main research areas: (i) the role of nutritional habits and factors in the development of obesity and its complications, (ii) the role of nutrition in healthy aging, and (iii) the biological basis of food choice and nutritional behaviour. DIfE comprises seven departments.
The research group Intestinal Microbiology within the Department of Molecular Toxicology participates in SynBio4Flav. A major focus of the Intestinal Microbiology group is to explore the conversion of polyphenolic plant compounds by intestinal bacteria and subsequent health-related consequences for the human host.
In SynBio4Flav, DIfE is responsible for the identification and characterization of flavonoid-transforming enzymes and flavonoid transporters from the gut microbiome. In addition, DIfE will contribute to phenotyping of bacterial strains used for flavonoid production and finally test effects of produced flavonoids on composition and function of the human gut microbiota.
The Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences (WU) is one of the biggest universities in Poland and is at the forefront of research in the area of agriculture, food sciences, food economy, environmental protection, and engineering. WU’s organisational structure is divided into five faculties, among which three faculties; The Faculty of Biology and Animal Science, the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, and the Faculty Biotechnology of Food Science are incorporated into the Wrocław Biotechnology Centre, which obtained the status of the Leading National Research Centre (KNOW) for the years 2014-2018.
In terms of excellence in science, WU is ranked at Global Ranking of Academic Subjects (the Shanghai Ranking) 2017 in the field of Food Science & Technology. In 2017, WU was granted the Human Resources Excellence in Research Award, based on the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers.
For SynBio4Flav, the Department of Chemistry of WU will work on identification and characterization of enzymes suitable for functionalization and decoration of flavonoid synthons. A library of Glycosyltransferases (GTs) will be created for constructing operational decoration modules. In addition, construction of an in vitro glycosylating module for alternative diversification of flavonoid synthons will be executed.
Greifswald University (UG) was founded in 1456 and is one of the oldest academic institutions in Germany. Today, it has become a modern, moderate-sized university in five faculties. The university has established several programs to ensure gender balance, child care for university employees and a Welcome Center for foreign students. Proteomics and Protein Technologies in Infection Biology, Environmental Microbiology and Biotechnology is one of the five focus areas of research at UG.
For SynBio4Flav, the Biotechnology & Enzyme Catalysis Department works on high-throughput assays using a robotic platform, and enzyme optimization via protein engineering.
The University of Oviedo is a public institution of higher education and research in the Principality of Asturias, Spain. It offers a full range of undergraduate degrees adapted to the European Higher Education Area (EHEA), and postgraduate degree programmes in collaboration with national and international universities and more than 250 companies. The University of Oviedo undertakes 80% of the R&D and Innovation activities carried out in Asturias region, and has cutting-edge services and facilities to facilitate the transfer of knowledge to the business world.
The Microbiology Area at University of Oviedo has been studying biosynthesis of diverse bioactive products from microbial origin (antibiotics, antitumors, nutraceuticals) at genetic and metabolic engineering levels for over 30 years. It constitutes currently one of the most important institutions working on natural bioactive products in Europe, with diverse reference groups in this area.
In SynBio4Flav, UNIOVI is mainly responsible for the optimization of diversification modules, including the enzymatic optimization central synthons and flavones and flavanones biosynthetic pathways in microbial chassis. In addition, UNIOVI is in charge of the development of SEVA-based CRISPR and CRISPRi synbiotools and provide the risk-beneficial using human tumour cell lines and murine model.
EXTRASYNTHESE, established for 30 years near Lyon (France), is a leading manufacturer and distributor of phytochemical reference materials worldwide. It has developed a great expertise in extraction, purification, synthesis, and analysis of natural substances. Through internal research, collaboration with academic partners, and participation in collaborative projects, EXTRASYNTHESE continuously expands its know-how and catalogue of products.
EXSY evaluates the SMCs transferring from lab scale to industrial pilot scale, while optimizing down-stream processing of target compounds in the SynBio4Flav project.
Biopolis, S.L. is a leading biotechnology company, based in Valencia, Spain, active in new product development and applications. Created in October 2003, Biopolis is owned by the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC). Biopolis core competences are the isolation, selection, design, characterization, validation, and production of microorganisms and cellular metabolites with applications in agri-food, feed, pharmaceutical, and chemical industries. This includes the design of microbial strains and metabolites by strain and bioprocess development, followed by fermentation and downstream process optimization, and production at the industrial scale.
Biopolis, S.L. has generated novel high-throughput screening platforms in vitro and in vivo, enabling the evaluation and characterization of the effect of selected ingredients in relation to nutritional and health protection functionalities. Therefore, the selected compounds can be produced and also evaluated in terms of their functional activity in the host.
For SynBio4Flav, Biopolis develops and optimizes a SMC-based fermentation process for the optimization of flavonoid production and the production of functionalized flavonoids. Generated flavonoids will be validated.
EXPLORA S.r.l. (IT) is a privately-owned SME, founded in 2006. Its mission is the realization of enabling technologies in several areas of biological engineering. A strong multidisciplinary and constructivist approach at different biological scales is at the core of our vision. The outcome is a coherent and comprehensive biological platform aimed at providing end-to-end solutions to unravel the inherent complexity of biological systems by exploiting the paradigm of synthetic biology: abstraction, decoupling, and standardization. This paradigm in EXPLORA is currently conveyed within DOULIX, a dedicated business unit devoted to the design and the realization of the first integrated toolkit for synthetic biology.
SynBio4Flav will contribute to the expansion of DOULIX with adding new tools covering a further level of organisation of biological systems. A new level of analysis along with an enlarged public and bio-validated collection of standard DNA sequence will ensure a continued competitiveness and unique selling proposition of DOULIX with other similar platforms.
Symrise develops, produces, and sells fragrances and flavourings, cosmetic active ingredients and raw materials, as well as functional ingredients and solutions that enhance the sensory properties and nutrition of various products. The company’s nearly 30,000 products are mainly produced on the basis of natural raw materials like vanilla, citrus fruits, onions, fish, meat, blossoms, and plant materials. Flavours, substances, perfume oils, and sensory solutions are often central functional components for the end products of the SYMRISE customer base. Customers include manufacturers of perfumes, cosmetics, and foods, the pharmaceutical industry, and producers of nutritional supplements, pet food, and baby food.
Symrise has been awarded for their sustainability efforts, e.g.: SYM Among Globally First 100 SBT-Certified Companies (April 2018), Leading Position in the Ethibel Sustainability Index Europe (April 2018), Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) Award, 2018, “Climate, Water and Forests” SYM among Global Leaders in CDP Ranking (Oct. 2017).
In SynBio4Flav, Symrise is responsible for the development of bioprocesses; optimization of parameters via DoE approaches and online analytics, downstream processing of phenolics, purification of natural compounds, final confection of natural products for flavouring properties, and quality check (analytical, sensory).
LIQUIFER Systems Group GmbH (LSG) is an SME and was established in 2004 with the objective of creating a multidisciplinary task force that can design and develop architectural and engineering systems for terrestrial and space applications. LSG has gained experience in this area through contracts with the European Space Agency (ESA), the European Framework Programme, the Austrian Science Fund, and the European Industry. LSG combines a wide range of expertise within one team and covers fields from architecture and engineering, biomimetics through to human factors, and science (geology and biology). The composition of the company provides a unique environment for innovative research and product development.
In SynBio4Flav, LSG develops ceramic interfaces for microbial consortia including the final ceramics-based SMC bioreactor interfaces. LSG will manufacture ceramic membranes for the final SMC demonstration set-up. Further, LSG leads and coordinates activities in the areas of dissemination, outreach and exploitation.