The structure of the FAS enzyme (left), and foreign enzymes embedded into the chambers of FAS (right).
There have been many attempts to modify this stubborn little enzyme, but none have succeeded. Until now. With new findings from Chalmers University of Technology, the fatty acid synthase (FAS) enzyme has started to produce sustainable chemicals for biofuels. The results were recently published in the journal Nature Chemical Biology. We are in great need of sustainable and clean alternatives to oil-derived products. One of the choices at hand is to produce chemicals and biofuels from sustainable biomass. To do this, a research team at Chalmers University of Technology is hard at work trying to design yeast cell factories that can actually produce the chemicals we need in a sustainable way. The group has now had a major breakthrough, having developed a novel method of modifying the fatty acid synthase (FAS) enzyme so that it can create new products.