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Latest Projects

Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2018-08-01 - 2020-01-31

The enzyme cellbiose dehydrogenase is a fungal enzyme containing flavin and heme. The catalytically active dehydrogenase domain catalyses the oxidation of cellobiose to cellobionic acid and lactose to lactobionic acid. The enzyme is a dehydrogenase and only reacts poorly with oxygen. A cellobiose oxidase showing improved activity with oxygen would have advantages with respect to various applications. Generating a CDH variant of Myriococcum thermophilum with increased reactivity with oxygen, the neutral pH activity optimum was maintained. It was shown that this variant can convert lactose in milk. It is the aim of the current project to further improve the enzyme for industrial applications.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2018-06-01 - 2020-05-31

Aim of the project is the monitoring and improvement of the production hygiene with a main focus on building services engineering and ventilation. This also includes aspects such as cleaning and decontamination as well as the development of new analytical methods. Based on the evaluation of current manufacturing practices in the Life Science Industries, experimental and simulation tools will be applied in order to investigate distribution pathways of contaminants. Subsequently, effective decontamination strategies will be established based on cleaning and decontamination, the application of antimicrobial surfaces as well as the application of ventilation and cleanroom concepts and the hygienic design of equipment. Finally, recommendations and guidelines will be developed in order to support the Life Science Industries in improving their production efficiency and product safety by optimized hygiene monitoring, cleaning and decontamination as well as aseptic processing concepts.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2017-10-01 - 2019-09-30

Today the consumers' demand for high quality safe foods requires the development and application of emerging processing technologies for the gentle pasteurization and sterilization of foods, such as high hydrostatic pressure and ohmic heating. There is still a need for research in this field, e.g. considering the impact on food structure, food quality, microorganisms, enzyme activity, and nutrients. The project will help to get a deeper insight into high pressure and high temperatures as a tool for sterilization. The objective is to study the synergy of pressure and temperature on the inactivation of microorganisms and spores. Further, the baroprotective effect of solutes and the possible recovery of microorganisms, spores and the influence on wanted/unwanted compounds in the food will be studied. Another promising technology studied within the project is Ohmic Heating, where an electric field is directly applied to the food at high frequencies. Ohmic heating has the advantage of being a volumetric process, i.e. temperature distribution is significantly more homogeneous. Due to the significant reduction of these inhomogeneities, desired pasteurization and sterilization temperatures can be reached in shorter times. Consequently, valuable food constituents, such as vitamins, proteins or enzymes, are not degraded to such an extent as during traditional thermal processing, resulting in foods with higher nutritional value and lower formation of neoformed contaminants. It is the aim to obtain inactivation kinetics of several microbial species in different matrices, as well as to evaluate the neoformed contaminant formation. Using modern analytical strategies, an evaluation vs conventional technologies will be performed to demonstrate the added value of these processing methods and products. The scientific and multidisciplinary approach will provide a future toolbox for safe and high quality products.

Supervised Theses and Dissertations