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Rational evolution by computational methods applied to predict mutations in enzymes to biofuels production

Grant number: 16/13998-8
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): January 01, 2017
Effective date (End): June 17, 2021
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Biophysics - Molecular Biophysics
Cooperation agreement: Coordination of Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES)
Principal researcher:Vitor Barbanti Pereira Leite
Grantee:Vinícius de Godoi Contessoto
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências, Letras e Ciências Exatas (IBILCE). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de São José do Rio Preto. São José do Rio Preto , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):17/09662-7 - Rational Evolution by Computational Methods Applied in Enzymes Related to Bioethanol Production, BE.EP.PD


One of the most difficult challenges in science is to find clean and cheap energy sources. The second generation bioethanol seems to be viable a solution to substitute fossil fuel usage. The bioethanol production makes use of sugarcane biomass residues not used directly in fermentation process. This process involves the degradation of cellulose by specific enzymatic hydrolysis. The technological challenge now is to obtain and optimize the enzymes to perform the hydrolysis process with more efficiency. Recent results from CTBE group on Xylanase A enzyme from Bacillus subtilis have shown a group of mutations that improves the thermostability and the catalytic activity. Understanding the effect of each mutation in protein is an important step to be able to develop efficient methods to design optimized enzymes. The motivation of this project is to work on enzymes thermostability optimization, suggesting mutations to be tested experimentaly. This ongoing project seeks to evaluate and optimize enzyme cocktails for second generation bioethanol production. The focus of the optimization is to increase the catalytic activity, the thermostability and pH control, adapting the enzymes to have the optimum activity at the reactor operation conditions. Theoretical methods based on optimization of charge-charge interaction in enzyme surface and based on consensus and ancestral reconstruction sequence will be used. The suggested mutations will be experimentally validated by the CTBE group. (AU)

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Scientific publications (8)
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
CHENG, RYAN R.; CONTESSOTO, VINICIUS G.; AIDEN, EREZ LIEBERMAN; WOLYNES, PETER G.; DI PIERRO, MICHELE; ONUCHIC, JOSE N. Exploring chromosomal structural heterogeneity across multiple cell lines. eLIFE, v. 9, OCT 13 2020. Web of Science Citations: 0.
DA SILVA, FERNANDO B.; DE OLIVEIRA, VINICIUS M.; SANCHES, MURILO N.; CONTESSOTO, VINICIUS G.; LEITE, VITOR B. P. Rational Design of Chymotrypsin Inhibitor 2 by Optimizing Non-Native Interactions. JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL INFORMATION AND MODELING, v. 60, n. 2, p. 982-988, FEB 2020. Web of Science Citations: 1.
DODERO-ROJAS, ESTEBAN; FERREIRA, LUIZA G.; LEITE, VITOR B. P.; ONUCHIC, JOSE N.; CONTESSOTO, VINICIUS G. Modeling Chikungunya control strategies and Mayaro potential outbreak in the city of Rio de Janeiro. PLoS One, v. 15, n. 1 JAN 28 2020. Web of Science Citations: 0.
FREITAS, FREDERICO CAMPOS; LIMA, ANGELICA NAKAGAWA; CONTESSOTO, VINICIUS DE GODOI; WHITFORD, PAUL C.; DE OLIVEIRA, RONALDO JUNIO. Drift-diffusion (DrDiff) framework determines kinetics and thermodynamics of two-state folding trajectory and tunes diffusion models. Journal of Chemical Physics, v. 151, n. 11 SEP 21 2019. Web of Science Citations: 0.
DA SILVA, FERNANDO BRUNO; CONTESSOTO, VINICIUS G.; DE OLIVEIRA, VINICIUS M.; CLARKE, JANE; LEITE, VITOR B. P. Non-Native Cooperative Interactions Modulate Protein Folding Rates. Journal of Physical Chemistry B, v. 122, n. 48, p. 10817-10824, DEC 6 2018. Web of Science Citations: 3.
CONTESSOTO, VINICIUS G.; DE OLIVEIRA, VINICIUS M.; FERNANDES, BRUNO R.; SLADE, GABRIEL G.; LEITE, VITOR B. P. TKSA-MC: A web server for rational mutation through the optimization of protein charge interactions. PROTEINS-STRUCTURE FUNCTION AND BIOINFORMATICS, v. 86, n. 11, p. 1184-1188, NOV 2018. Web of Science Citations: 2.
DE OLIVEIRA, VINICIUS MARTINS; CONTESSOTO, VINICIUS DE GODOI; DA SILVA, FERNANDO BRUNO; ZAGO CAETANO, DANIEL LUCAS; DE CARVALHO, SIDNEY JURADO; PEREIRA LEITE, VITOR BARBANTI. Effects of pH and Salt Concentration on Stability of a Protein G Variant Using Coarse-Grained Models. BIOPHYSICAL JOURNAL, v. 114, n. 1, p. 65-75, JAN 9 2018. Web of Science Citations: 8.
VINÍCIUS DE GODOI CONTESSOTO; ANTONIO BENTO DE OLIVEIRA JUNIOR; JORGE CHAHINE; RONALDO JUNIO DE OLIVEIRA; VITOR BARBANTI PEREIRA LEITE. Introdução ao problema de enovelamento de proteínas: uma abordagem utilizando modelos computacionais simplificados. Revista Brasileira de Ensino de Física, v. 40, n. 4, p. -, 2018.

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