I currently coordinate two research lines:
- Anaerobic metabolism of yeasts and fungi (ERC Advanced project Eloxy). This research line aims to identify and eliminate the as yet unidentified requirements of yeasts and fungi for molecular oxygen, using a combination of quantitative physiology, comparative genomics and synthetic biology.
- New (engineering) strategies for 2nd generation bioethanol production (funded by BE-Basic and DSM) Building on our earlier research on metabolic engineering strategies for pentose fermentation, we investigate new engineering strategies to improve kinetics, stoichiometry and robustness of pentose-fermenting S. cerevisiae strains. In addition, together with the Van Loosdrecht group, we explore biodiversity for microorganisms capable of fermenting key compounds in plant biomass hydrolysates.
These research lines would not be possible without the support and active input of my fellow PI’s in the Industrial Microbiology section: Jean-Marc Daran and Pascale-Daran Lapujade and of our excellent team of staff technicians: Marijke Luttik (analytics), Pilar de la Torre (molecular biology/genomics), Erik de Hulster (fermentation) and Marcel van den Broek (bioinformatics).