Creating protein biocatalysts as tools for future industrial applications

John C. Chaput, Neal Woodbury, Linda A. Stearns, Berea A R Williams

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Background: Biocatalysts provide an economical and energy-efficient alternative to traditional chemical manufacturing processes. For processes where biocatalysts currently do not exist or existing protein catalysts function poorly, there is a tremendous need to discover new protein catalysts that function in industrial settings. The protein engineering community has traditionally relied on cell-based techniques in 96-well format to evolve new catalysts or improve existing enzymes. Objective: This review examines recent progress made in many display technologies, providing powerful alternatives for generating novel enzymes with altered specificity or altogether new types of function. Methods: Library creation methods and display technologies that are commonly used in conjunction with enzyme evolution are discussed. Conclusion: We conclude with an expert opinion on future trans-disciplinary approaches that combine directed evolution with computational design as novel platforms for rapidly discovering new types of catalytic function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1087-1098
Number of pages12
JournalExpert Opinion on Biological Therapy
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2008


  • Directed evolution
  • Library diversity
  • Protein biocatalyst

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Clinical Biochemistry


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