The Arnold laboratory is a world leader in the directed evolution and optimization of enzymes for applications in biotechnology. Biological systems have evolved over billions of years to perform very specific biological functions and to do so within the context of a living organism.
Some of the features required for function in a complex chemical network are undesirable when the catalyst is lifted out of context. Conversely many of the properties we wish enzymes would have clash with the needs of the organism, or at least were never required. The Arnold group is developing and using methods of directed evolution to explore the vast space of novel enzyme functions never explored in nature.
One very successful example has been the directed evolution of an enzyme… Continue reading