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Production of natural phenazines in E. coli and their application in zinc ion batteries

Grant number: 20/10128-8
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: March 01, 2021 - February 28, 2023
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Chemical Engineering
Principal Investigator:Adilson José da Silva
Grantee:Adilson José da Silva
Host Institution: Centro de Ciências Exatas e de Tecnologia (CCET). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil
Associated researchers: Blanca Barquera ; José Mario de Aquino ; Mattheos Koffas


Phenazines are a class of secondary metabolites found in some microorganisms. These biomolecules are formed by nitrogen-containing aromatic rings, which can easily undergo oxidation-reduction reactions. This redox feature of phenazines will be explored in this project to develop zinc ion batteries. To do so, we propose here to produce a set of phenazines using a heterologous host. The genes required for the biosynthesis of the selected phenazines will be cloned in E. coli using vectors compatible with the BioBrick standards. Moreover, the producing strain will be engineered to optimize the production of aromatic compounds. Next, the produced phenazines will be used to prepare organic cathodes to be evaluated in aqueous zinc ion batteries. This new battery design combines the safety and low cost of zinc with the usage of ecofriendly biological materials, which are important advantages in comparison to lithium-ion batteries used for electronic portable devices. In the end, we aim at developing a new phenazine production platform together with an efficient and sustainable energy storage system. (AU)

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