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Development of actinobacterial platforms for production of natural products using genetic engineering tools and omics techniques

Country of Origin: Spain
Reference Number: TOES20180131001
Publication Date: 31 January 2018

Summary

A Spanish biotechnological institute offers their research experience in Streptomyces, Corynebacterium and Mycobacterium, molecular biology, synthetic biology and technical capabilities, including omics tools (genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics), to develop platforms for production of natural products (antibiotics, immunosuppressants, etc). Industrial/academic partners from pharma are sought for services and research agreement to prepare proposals for European and collaborative projects.

Description

The organization is a Spanish biotechnological private non-profit research institute, founded in 1993, whose main activities are related to molecular biology and microbial biotechnology. The institution keeps close links with industrial research and innovation. The team covers several techniques and counts with a long experience in scientific research in European funded projects.

The Institute’s research group of the molecular microbiology of Streptomyces is seeking partners to build collaborative projects. For this, the group would provide expertise in the following techniques: a) microbial culture techniques, including fermentation cultures for production of secondary metabolites and high pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC)-based quantification of products; b) gene cloning and genetic engineering techniques, including species that are difficult to modify, c) protein expression and purification, d) transcriptional regulation studies, including electrophoretic-mobility assays, footprinting assays, and bioinformatics of binding sites; e) transcriptomic analysis (both microarray and ribonucleic acid sequencing (RNA-seq); f) 2-D proteomics and mass spectrometry, g) bioinformatics, including genome sequencing.

The specialized equipment for the transcriptomic studies includes homogenization/disruptors cell systems for nucleic acid or protein extraction, RNA analyses, real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) instrument for gene expression analysis and the platform for microarray transcriptomic. Workstations are available for bioinformatics.

The specialized equipment for proteomics studies includes a chromatography system for protein purification, a bidimensional gel electrophoresis system, fluorescent gel and membrane scanners, and a matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization of time of flight (MALDI TOF/TOF) mass spectrometer.

The institute is also equipped with a pilot plant hosting, among others, a battery of four 5-liter fermenters, as well as HPLC apparatus to analyze secondary metabolites production.

The research institute is looking for industrial and academic partners from pharma services agreements based on the know-how of the center. It is also interested in collaboration in order to prepare proposals for European projects as Horizon 2020 or Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) calls.

Advantages and Innovations

As an example of the advantages of the actinobacterial platforms, the number and diversity of secondary metabolites produced by strains of the Streptomyces genus has been estimated in more than 10^5 different compounds, of which only a minor fraction is known. The known metabolites comprise about two-thirds of naturally occurring antibiotics and also other compounds of useful biological activities, such as immunosuppressants, antihelmintics, antitumorals, and herbicides. Streptomyces could be the source of new valuable antibiotics needed to treat ESKAPE infections (Enterococcus faecium, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Enterobacter species).

This actinobacterial platforms allows the access to new secondary metabolites produced by strains of the Streptomyces genus. Theses unknown metabolites could be the source of new valuable antibiotics, immunosuppressants, antihelmintics, antitumorals, and herbicides.

Stage Of Development

Concept stage

Requested partner

The biotechnology institute is looking for academic and industrial partners in order to build collaborative projects in the area of biotechnology production of pharmaceuticals, based on advanced genetic engineering of Actinomycetes, genome, transcriptome and proteome analyses, as well as regulatory studies. The focus is on polyketide compounds and non-ribosomal peptides, including beta-lactams, showing antibiotic activities or acting as immunosuppressors or other biological activities.
The institute is also interested in contact with industries, academia or research organizations, in the area of pharmaceuticals, interested in services agreement related with know how previously described.

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