Chitin valorisation via enzymatic deacetylation

Lead Research Organisation: University of Edinburgh
Department Name: Sch of Chemistry


Chitin is a linear homopolymer characterised by -(1,4)-linked N-acetyl-D-glucosamine residues (Fig. 1). It is the most naturally occurring polysaccharide after cellulose and is fundamental to exoskeletal rigidity in arthropods and cell wall biogenesis in many fungal and yeast species. In the solid state, industrial applications of chitin are limited due to its microfibril crystalline structures making it insoluble in most solvents; thus, its deacetylated counterpart, chitosan, has generated renewed interest within areas of industrial biotechnology and biomedical research as a biodegradable, antimicrobial, non-toxic and tractable biomaterial. Our aims are to identify, then apply, chitin deacetylases (CDAs) as versatile biocatalysts for the greener conversion of shell-derived chitin into high value chitosan.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
BB/T508718/1 01/10/2019 30/09/2023
2261326 Studentship BB/T508718/1 01/09/2019 28/02/2021 Zenam Sadiq