Stephanie Frank (UCL)
Thu 05 Nov 2020, 12:00 - 13:00
Online (Blackboard collaborate)

If you have a question about this talk, please contact: Julie Fyffe (jfyffe)

Prokaryotes form supramolecular self-assembling protein compartments, known as bacterial nanocompartments (encapsulins) and bacterial microcompartments (BMCs)1, that are associated with metabolic processes. The modular nature of these structures and the ease of recombinant production2 has sparked interest into repurposing these particles as vaccines, drug-delivery vehicles and as nano-bioreactors. The design of robust platforms for these applications, requires understanding and control over particle formation, protein encapsulation and stability of engineered variants. Using synthetic biology tools, we gain insights into the properties and suitability of diverse nano- and microcompartments for versatile applications and identify design rules for future candidates.

In this presentation I will demonstrate examples of engineered encapsulin variants for drug-delivery applications and as stable VLP-like vaccines candidates. Further I will explore the potential of bacterial microcompartments as mini-factories for enhanced protein folding and disulfide bond formation and the discovery of microcompartment-derived tools, including some limitations and considerations for the future biomanufacture of these candidates.

1 Planamente, S., & Frank, S. (2019). Bio-engineering of bacterial microcompartments: a mini review. Biochemical Society Transactions, 47(3), 765-777.

2 Sigmund, F., Massner, C., Erdmann, P., Stelzl, A., Rolbieski, H., Desai, M., Bricault, S., Wörner, T.P., Snijder, J., Geerlof, A. and Fuchs, H., 2018. Bacterial encapsulins as orthogonal compartments for mammalian cell engineering. Nature communications, 9(1), pp.1-14.


Host: Prof Lynne Regan