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Application of laccase and peroxidase enzymes to degrade carbamazepine by hybrid enzymatic-photo-oxidative reactions

Grant number: 23/04592-1
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate (Direct)
Effective date (Start): February 01, 2024
Effective date (End): July 31, 2024
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Chemical Engineering - Chemical Process Industries
Principal Investigator:Antonio Carlos Silva Costa Teixeira
Grantee:Natalia Klanovicz
Supervisor: Satinder Kaur Brar
Host Institution: Escola Politécnica (EP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Research place: York University, Canada  
Associated to the scholarship:21/08815-0 - Development of a hybrid system combining advanced oxidative processes and enzymatic biocatalysis for antiepileptic drug degradation in continuous flow reactors, BP.DD


Epilepsy is one of the most common neurological diseases, affecting around 50 million people worldwide. Treatment with antiepileptic drugs can eliminate seizure episodes, thus being a pharmaceutical class of medical importance. Carbamazepine is one of the antiepileptics commonly found in wastewater in its original form, reaching concentrations up to 442 mg/L, thus creating an environmental health problem. Conventional technologies generally have low removal efficiency for this compound due to its persistence, bioaccumulative nature, fast mobility, among other factors. Thus advanced oxidation processes (AOP) and enzymatic biocatalysis are possible alternative technologies for wastewater treatment plants. Reactions can be combined and act together to generate hydroxyl radicals. In this sense, it is understood that there are opportunities to couple extracellular enzymes and ultraviolet peroxidation (UVC/H2O2). For this purpose, homemade peroxidase from Trichoderma and laccase from Trametes will be tested. The enzymes will be applied in their free and immobilized forms, and the treatment system will be studied in a continuous flow flat-plate reactor. The coupling of enzymatic-photo-oxidative reactions will be tested in a single reactor for carbamazepine degradation. The removal efficiency and kinetics will determine the system's feasibility. In addition, it will be optimized by adjusting the operating parameters. In this context, the planned collaboration with Professor Satinder K. Brar will contribute very positively to the advancement of this doctorate investigation because of the considerable expertise of her research team in advanced hybrid oxidation and enzymatic technologies for pharmaceutical removal from wastewater. (AU)

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