Platforms for Microbial Cell Engineering


Modern tools of systems and synthetic biology have revolutionized our understanding of many bioproduction hosts and enabled their genetic engineering. However, advanced cell engineering demands a detailed knowledge and sophisticated methods which cannot simply be transferred from model organisms to these industrial strains.

We focus mainly on yeasts, first of all Pichia pastoris, and establish advanced tools and cell engineering platforms. As a basis for all further understanding we refine and update continuously the annotation of all genes of P. pastoris, which we provide as a community service via
Genome annotation is a major source of information for the identification of non-canonical metabolic processes, which we approach further by metabolic modeling (in collaboration with Jürgen Zanghellini - working group "Metabolic Modelling") and by classical biochemical analysis. By applying thermodynamic principles to metabolic design we target the feasible reaction space at ambient conditions, but also in extreme environments like high pressure. Using a holistic approach to match advanced cell biology knowledge and bioprocess engineering principles we develop production platforms that match the needs of industrial scale fermentations, e.g. process-controlled promoter systems. Cell biology of is studied on a systems level, integrating -omics data with biochemical evidence and advanced fluorescence microscopy. Finally we are establishing a platform for genetic analysis and strain breeding for P. pastoris, based on our recent development of stable mating type strains.

Pichia Genome Database

This database hosts up-to-date annotation information of the genome of the methylotrophic yeast Pichia pastoris (Komagataella spp.), containing the new manually achieved annotation of K. phaffii strain CBS7435, and basic sequence and annotation information taken from the GenBank data of various Komagataella strains and species.
Additionally the sequence information of S. cerevisiae strain S288c is also available for comparison and homolog display.