Univ.-Prof. Dr.rer.nat. Ulrich Schwaneberg
RWTH Aachen University
Head of Institute of Biotechnology
Professor of Biochemical Engineering
Ulrich Schwaneberg is head of the Institute of Biotechnology at RWTH AachenUniversity. His group seeks to be at the research frontier in the interdisciplinary field of directed protein evolution by developing novel methods for generating diversity at the gene level, analyzing consequence of mutational biases on the protein level and developing novel high-throughput screening systems that will ultimately lead to tailored biocatalysts for significant applications in industry.
The core expertise of the group is biocatalyst engineering by directed evolution and rational design with a focus on method development. Developed methods comprise methods for generating diversity on the gene level (SeSaM: Sequence Saturation Mutagenesis; OmniChange: Multi-site saturation mutagenesis method) and related statistical program like MAP (Mutagenesis Assistant Program) for benchmarking random mutagenesis methods on the protein level. Additional various screening systems in microtiter and agar plate format have been developed and validated in directed evolution campaigns. Improved catalysts comprise monooxygenases, hydrogen peroxide producing enzymes like glucose oxidase, cellulases, hydrolases (lipases, phosphatases) and laccases. Our research group has four subgroups headed each by a subgroup leader (I. Molecular biology, II. High-throughput screening technologies, III. Computational subgroup for hypothesis generation and clarify fundamental structure-function relationships and IV. Molecular medicine).