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Superior Bioremediation Enzymes

Researchers in Prof. A.C. Matin’s laboratory have bioengineered a patented enzyme ChrR6 (formerly referred to as Y6) that can efficiently remediate two of the most serious environmental contaminants - chromate and uranyl. These two widespread pollutants can cause serious health problems; ChrR6 acts to reduce their valence states making them nontoxic and less soluble (and therefore unlikely to leach out from the contamination site into ground water). Because ChrR6 can reduce more than one contaminant it is particularly well suited for remediation of the mixed waste found at most polluted sites. The improved ChrR6 enzyme can also potentially be biologically immobilized on polyhydroxyalkanoate (“bioplastic”) beads – which provides a very economic means for purifying and stabilizing the enzyme – and paired with an NADH regeneration system for excellent ex-situ bioremediation powered by phosphite or other affordable sacrificial substrates. Crystal structure of ChrR monomer

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