Production of water using microorganisms

Summary

Water is the most essential element which directly or indirectly sustains all life forms on Earth. Humans and other mammals can only survive for about three days in the absence of water, and yet, some other smaller organisms, are capable of inhabiting the driest environments in the planet such as deserts and glacier ice sheets. Some microorganisms are capable of producing water as a by-product of their cellular processes. This newly generated water can actually account for 40 to 70% of the water found in the cytoplasm of these microorganisms in their exponential growth phase. In recent decades, the field of synthetic biology has considerably advanced and it now allows us to manufacture different compounds of commercial interest at industrial scale using various species of microorganisms (e.g., cellulases or insulin). In this project, we aim to produce water biologically with in vitro methods applying synthetic biology, and quantitatively determine the technical feasibility of water generation by cellular processes. The outcomes of this project will allow us to estimate the industrial applicability of the process.

General information

  • PI: Anna Carratalà (LCE / IIE)
  • Start date: 01.04.2022
  • Duration: 6 months