EntreChem, 2 European Universities and Novartis to cooperate in the project
“MISSION: Streamlined Streptomyces cell factories for industrial production of valuable natural products.”
The European Commission has awarded €1.8M to the ERA-CoBiotech project “MISSION – Streamlined Streptomyces cell factories for industrial production of valuable natural products.” The project belongs to the ERA-Net Cofund on Biotechnologies (under the Framework Programme Horizon 2020), and it aims to enable a tailor-optimised production microbial host for valuable bioactive compounds and their downstream development as pharmaceuticals.
Professor Dr. Andriy Luzhetskyy, from the Department of Pharmacy, University of Saarland (Germany), coordinates the project. Academic partners include the Helmholtz- Zentrum für Infektionsforschung HZI/HIPS (also in Saarbrucken) and the University of Ljubljana (Slovenia). EntreChem and Novartis are the two industrial partners participating in the consortium.
MISSION is an innovative knowledge- and industry-driven value chain to produce valuable natural products by using streamlined Streptomyces rimosus cell factories. Natural products cover a unique chemical space, particularly for the development of antibiotics and anticancer drugs. Actinomycetes are the richest source of natural products, and therefore a class of bacteria of great interest for human health. Despite the huge number of novel compounds discovered so far, the supply of sufficient amounts is a significant bottleneck that hampers drug development. MISSION will create a robust natural products supply platform based on the powerful industrial oxytetracycline overproducer Streptomyces rimosus.
The concept integrates systems and synthetic biology with bioinformatics and process engineering into a purpose-driven and engineering workflow. Multi-omics analysis of this strain will deliver key insights for targeted optimization into superior chassis. During development, the iterative and interactive combination of carefully tailored experimental and computer-modelling approaches will support the prediction of multi-combinatorial genetic traits to develop a superior microbial chassis. A full range of new synthetic parts, such as fine-tuned promoters, terminators and regulatory circuits as well as cutting-edge CRISPR/Cas9 genetic engineering will be developed for an exact, marker-less and fast translation of identified, desired features into a clear genetic language, operated by the newly created S. rimosus cells. In addition to biosynthetic power, project will consider cellular genetic stability, process tolerance and robustness by pre-early integration of expected needs from industrial partners into the design process.
MISSION is an innovative knowledge- and industry-driven value chain to produce valuable natural products by using streamlined Streptomyces rimosus cell factories.
EntreChem SL is a Spanish spin off from the University of Oviedo, and its shareholders include original co-founders and local family offices. Private financing is complemented by public funds from MINECO, IDEPA, and the 7FP and H2020 programs from the European Union.