Prof. ZHU Dunming from Tianjin Institute of Industrial Biotechnology (TIB), CAS was invited to participate in the “Enzyme Engineering Conference XXIII” held in St. Petersburg, the United States on September 6 to 10, 2015, and gave a presentation entitled “Discovery and Engineering of Amino Acid Dehydrogenases for the Synthesis of Optically Pure D-and b-Amino Acids”.
Prof. Zhu presented their recent progress on D-amino acid dehydrogenases and b-amino acid dehydrogenases. Crystal structure and mutation studies reveal the structural basis for the unique features of these enzymes. Site saturation mutagenesis of the amino acid residues interacting with the L-center of the substrate results in mutant enzymes with improved activity for the reductive amination of various 2-keto acids. Therefore, efficient D-amino acid dehydrogenases for different substrates can be tailor-made by engage engineering while keeping its excellent stereospecificity. He also presented the first example of enzymatic synthesis of optically pure b-amino acids by using b-amino acid dehydrogenase. With these studies, Prof. Zhu’s group established a platform technology for D- and b-amino acid synthesis. The report attacted great interest from the participants and stimulated warmly discussion.
Engineering Conferences International (ECI) is a not-for-profit global engineering conferences program, originally established in 1962, providing opportunities for the exploration of problems and concerns to engineers and scientists from many disciplines. Enzyme Engineering Conference is held every two years. About 150 attendees from all over the world participated this conference, covering de novo design and engineering of enzymes, biocatalysis, enzyme applications in various industries.