In the field of biocatalysts, the focus is also on the development of sustainable production processes for the chemical industry. Against the background of climate change, our research is focusing in particular on processes and process cascades based on the use of carbon dioxide (CO2) as a raw material or simple intermediates from the electrochemical conversion of CO2, such as methanol or formic acid.

We aim to use biotechnological processes to increase the added value of the products. For example, C1 compounds such as methanol or formic acid serve methylotrophic bacteria as their sole source of carbon and energy. We are also investigating and optimizing methylotrophic yeasts as production strains.

Our services

  • Strain development
  • Metabolic engineering of microbial production strains
  • Fermentation (laboratory scale) of C1 substrates (e.g. formate, methanol), sugars and other biogenic raw materials into chemical products
  • Conversion of C1-substrates and other biogenic substrates to terpenes (carotenoids), amino acids and organic acids
  • Biobased polymer building blocks
  • Microbial electrosynthesis

Metabolic engineering for biotechnological production


Chemical products from CO2 using methylotrophic yeasts

Process cascades for the synthesis of chemical products from CO2 are key technologies for a climate-friendly economy. Appropriate approaches for industrial biotechnology using synthetic methylotrophic yeasts as production strains have been described in the journal "Trends in Biotechnology".


Organic acids from methanol using methylotrophic bacteria

We have enabled the methylotrophic bacterium Methylorubrum extorquens AM1 to selectively produce simple difunctional organic acids from methanol using metabolic engineering. This allows the value-added use of green methanol from CO2 or synthesis gas.


Terpenoid dyes from C1 compounds

In the CELBICON project, we succeeded in converting simple C1 compounds into a complex red dye with the help of the bacterium Methylobacterium extorquens. The value-adding dye is produced via microbial terpene metabolism.