Exploring the Untapped Chemical Potential of the Microbial Word - a cellular and synthetic biology approach to organic synthesis

Lead Research Organisation: University of Edinburgh
Department Name: Sch of Biological Sciences


This project will examine the chemistry of a variety of microorganisms and use these cells to synthesise a range of target compounds relevant to the pharmaceutical industry. We will focus our attention on microorganisms isolated from extreme environments (e.g. volcanic soil, hydrothermal vents, sub-aquatic regions, and sites of meteor impact - so-called "extremophiles". Using an in-house focussed library of organic compounds, we will assess the functional group transformations that can be achieved by these organisms under a range of reaction conditions. Successful reactions will be optimised using standard microbiology techniques and, where possible, improved further using synthetic biology tools (e.g. metabolic engineering, CRISPR-Cas). Finally, these new biotransformations will be applied to the synthesis of a pharmaceutically-relevant target compound through our existing links with industry.


10 25 50

Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
BB/T00875X/1 01/10/2020 30/09/2028
2672998 Studentship BB/T00875X/1 01/10/2020 30/09/2024