BioIT tools for microbe factories (BIOITFACT) project

Project status

Project started in March 2013

This project is performed by a consortium built within the frame of IBC Finland with expertise covering the whole range of activity, each partner providing important complementarity. The consortium consists of two industry players, Valio Ltd from the food industry, and Roal Ltd from the enzyme industry, four BioIT SMEs (Bioptima Ltd, Euformatics Oy, Genevia Technologies Ltd, Indalgo Ltd) and a research organization (VTT), all contributing to a platform for the development of new BioIT tools for industrial processes.

Project description

The objective of the project is to improve the efficiency, feasibility and safety of bioprocesses and the manufacturing of bioproducts. In addition, the aim is to develop new business opportunities in the BioIT sector. This project is performed by a consortium built within the frame of IBC Finland.

This project will respond to key questions of the bioprocess industry by employing efficient computational tools. Efficiency of a bioprocess is a multifaceted challenge, in particular in the sense of control and reproducibility. Processes have multiple phases and a great number of variables. Usually problems in processes or in end products can be detected only after the completion of the batch or after the process has stalled. In some cases the process needs to be interrupted prematurely. This leads to substantial economic losses.

One of the major goals of the project is to create predictive models and software. The software developed in this project will be used to estimate the quality of the final product already during the production phase, enabling corrections during the process. Thereby, it will be possible to affect positively the final quality of the product without losing product batches or time due to events in the process.

The continuous development of new types of enzymes and production strains is required for competitivity in industrial biotechnology. Therefore, the second goal of the project is to develop safer enzyme production strains and novel enzymes by incorporating high throughput measurement technologies and more efficient BioIT tools into the development process. This will improve the screening of novel enzymes and/or enzymes having synergy with existing molecules as well as improve product quality and safety by engineering secondary metabolism of production strains.

In the future BioIT tools and software platforms developed in this project can be commercialised by the BioIT companies in other similar projects, thus open new business opportunities.