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Perspectives on biotechnological halogenation Part II: Prospecting for future biohalogenases

LEOPOLDO N. HERRERA-RODRIGUEZ1, 3, HANS-PETER MEYER2, KAREN T. ROBINS2, FARID KHAN1, 3*
*Corresponding author
1. Protein Technologies Ltd, Manchester Science Park, Manchester, M15 6SE, United Kingdom
2. Lonza AG, 3930 Visp, Switzerland
3. The University of Manchester, Manchester, M13 9PL, United Kingdom

Abstract

Chemical halogenation is a well-established methodology often associated with hazardous starting materials andproducts. This review focuses on enzymatic halogenationas a source of future biocatalysts and the potential of thisapproach for production of highly specifi c and selectivecompounds thereby avoiding the associated hazardsof chemical halogenation. We highlight the need todiscover and screen for new halogenases and weexemplify the only fl uorinase that has been characterisedto date. The marine environment holds much promise forprospecting for halogenases and recently many marinederived products have shown pharmaceutical activity.In particular, coral reefs ecosystems are prime targets forbiohalogenase discovery as they consist of many diverseorganisms including corals, sponges, algae and bacteria.We conclude that targeted academic-industry researchfor the screening and characterisation of halogenatedintermediates and their pathways will allow the discoveryof novel halogenating enzymes for use as biocatalysts.