Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology
The main focus of the department is the identification and analysis of cellular mechanisms on a molecular level and their setup in microorganisms and mamalian cells. The know-how generated is translated to advance the business fields medicine, pharmacy and chemistry.
The core competences of the department lie in the application of molecular-biological and biotechnological methods for genomics, transcriptomics and proteomics. A further asset is our accredited analytics, which can also be used for metabolome analyses. Metabolic engineering for strain development, integrated in a bioprocess and focused on simplified product purification, is a central competence for both microbial production processes and for the production of pharmaceutical proteins from mammalian cell lines. In infection biology, the combination of methods of functional genome analysis with our expertise in cell culture technology gives us a unique selling point in the development of infection models and diagnostics.
Using these competences, the Molecular Biotechnology Department in cooperation with other departments of the Fraunhofer IGB, is active in the business areas of medicine, pharmacy, chemistry and the environment. In the field of biocatalysis we work closely with the BioCat Project Group based in Straubing, while we collaborate with the project group at Fraunhofer CBP in Leuna to develop our laboratory-scale bioprocesses up to 10 m3 scale. We also cooperate with the Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine ITEM on developing processes for manufacturing pharmaceutical proteins, up to GMP-compliant production of biologicals for clinical phases of pharmaceutical development.
- Screening of targets and active compounds for anti-infectives (2D and LC proteomics, DNA microarrays, parallel sequencing, infection models, screening assays)
- Gene expression analyses for customers
- Development of DNA microarrays: design of probes, production of PCR fragments, contact printing, and hybridization
- Cell-based assays: antiviral assays (GLP), pyrogen detection, mutagenicity, toxicity
- Development of production cell lines and processes for recombinant production of proteins (biosimilars), protein purification and characterization
- Development of high-throughput enzyme assays and screening
- Strain and parameter screening in multifermenter systems
- Development of integrated fermentation processes for industrial biotechnology with a focus on downstream processing of raw materials and products
- Chemical-physical and biochemical analysis
Infrastructure, laboratory and technical equipment
- Molecular-biological laboratories conforming to safety levels L2, S1 and S2 of the German GenTSV (genetic engineering safety regulations)
- Microarray facility, universal microarray platform
- Quantitative real time PCR (qRT-PCR LightCycler 480)
- Parallel sequencing facility
- Proteomics facility using high-resolution MS techniques (2D gel electrophoresis, nano-LC-MALDI-TOF/TOF, HPLC-ESI-MS/MS)
- Fermentation plant for suspension and adherent mammalian cell culture up to 10 l (non-GLP)
- Protein purification equipment
- Pulping machines (ball mills, etc.), multi-fermentation bioreactors for bioprocess development, and small bioreactors (up to 30 l) S2
- Picking robot for the systematic storage of DNA- and microbial libraries
- Accredited analytical lab: GC-MS/MS, LC-MS/MS, GPC, IC, ICP-AES and ICP-MS
Fields of activity
Fraunhofer Research Cell-free Bioproduction
The production of industrial suited proteins on demand is the great ambition of the Fraunhofer joint project “Biomolecules from the production line” started in 2011 within the strategic process Biotechnology 2020+ of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).