“Circularity, by Art & Technology” by Maria Dubin.
The beautiful Maria Dubin painting was printed onto enzyme treated, outsorted bed-sheets and used to make colorful table cloths, curtains and kimonos.
Improvement for climate, biodiversity and not the least food security, nutrition and health are essential for saving the world. For this we need to use the bio-resources much, much better. To achieve this, we need to use what micro-organisms can!
Here you find a selection of my contributions within research, dissemination, and outreach: In the magic and super-power of fungi and fungal enzymes; in biorefinery technologies, making higher value from what has now been downgraded or wasted; and not the least in hard core bioinformatics, enabling us to move from data to function and biological insight by prediction of function directly from genome sequences.
|Genome Annotation, Function & Evolution|
Optimized use of genome sequencing data, (from fungi, bacteria, algae, plants and animals) can be achieved by using peptide-based functional annotation (method: CUPP, available as online web-based tool for CAZymes). CUPP annotation to function gives basis for comparing secretome composition across taxonomies (method: Enzyme Profile Relatedness, EPR); and for identifying the fungal species with highest enzyme biomass digestive capacity and richest function specificity diversity (method: Hotspot).
List of publications about genome annotation, function & evolution.
Fungi have the richest portfolio of biomass-degrading enzymes, reflecting their role in nature as degraders, re-circulating carbon and nutrients. Many new, improved enzymes are needed for upgrading/valorization of the huge amount of bio-resources we waste or underexploit. The many types of biomass (terrestrial and aquatic) contain many different components, requiring different enzyme functions for opening/modifying the structures. CAZymes: Much more to be found. Proteases & Lipases: Virgin land.
List of publications about enzyme discovery.
|Fungi for Saving the World|
Fungi have huge potential for addressing several global challenges: Improving global food security, nutrition and health by unlocking full potential of residues, processing side-streams and food waste; and reducing emissions by making biobased substitutes for fossil-based products. For both, fungi/enzymes are key. Fungi is a potent source of new antibiotics and other medicines; fungal batteries are promising; and fungal Umami deliciousness can be driver for making the dietary green choice the preferred choice.
List of publications about fungi for saving the world.
|Bioeconomy & Biorefinery Technologies|
By microbial (fungal or bacterial) conversion and enzyme bioprocessing, combined with advanced methods for separation and recovery, it is possible to unlock full potential of the many types of biomass. The cascading approach to biorefinery technologies enables production of a portfolio of circular, biobased products, from higher-value products to bulk: Pharmaceuticals, health promoting food ingredients and feed additives; new substitutes for chemical pesticides and new types of functional biobased materials etc.
List of publications about bioeconomy & biorefinery technologies.
|Microbiome research for One Health |
Initial focus of microbiome research was to reveal its organismal composition and develop methods for improved function by enriching/restoring its organismal diversity. My focus has been to develop methods for: 1. Annotating digestive functions of the microbiome-secretome, (interacting with host/substrate), for molecular-level understanding the microbiome’s role. 2. Discovering new enzymes from the microbiome. Next, elucidating the microbiome functional role of fungi & protozoae; and of viruses. (Not just bacteria!)
List of publications about microbiome research for One Health.
|Zoosporic Fungi and Viruses|
Since the very start of my scientific career, I studied unicellular, zoosporic fungi, belonging to early lineage eukaryotes. Zoosporic fungi are difficult to study experimentally but in collaboration with Lauritz W. Olson we managed to unlock some of their magic (see early publications). In the last decades, using genome sequencing, their secretome composition / function were elucidated: Surprisingly it was found that zoosporic fungi have all types of biomass-degrading enzymes; for some even highest diversity!
List of publications about zoosporic fungi and viruses.