UC Santa Barbara researchers get $2.25 million DOE grant to research cellulosomes

September 11, 2019 |

In California, with a $2.25 million award from the U.S. Department of Energy, a research group at the University of California Santa Barbara, along with collaborators at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), are poised to advance the knowledge of and technology for advanced biofuels.

“Cellulosomes are multi-protein complexes of enzymes that work together to break down lignocellulose,” the lead researcher explained. “Cellulosomes in bacteria are fairly well studied, but cellulosomes in fungi have only recently been discovered, and we have almost no idea how the complex forms, rearranges and how it ‘attacks’ plant matter.

“By developing site-specific probes to target different proteins in the cellulosomes, we will be able to detect when (and how) they come together,” she continued. “We are also developing genetic tools to manipulate anaerobic fungi directly, which will open the way for adding/deleting different cellulosome components to see what their impact is on plant degradation.”

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Category: Research

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