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/ Department of Chemistry

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Experts in: Enzyme engineering

Pelletier, Joelle


Professeure titulaire, Professeure accréditée

Our goal is to develop a deeper understanding of enzyme structure-function relationships so as to more readily modify enzymes for defined purposes. Enzyme modification is a promising field, with a growing number of major industries rapidly increasing their activities in this sector, notably because policy changes now encourage the use of environmentally-friendly catalysts such as enzymes. The power of enzyme engineering has increased dramatically in the past 10 years. In our laboratory, we conduct combinatorial mutagenesis at the active site of enzymes then select those with the properties that interest us, in a process known as ‘accelerated evolution’. We then perform detailed kinetic and biophysical characterization as well as computer-assisted molecular modelling, to identify modified enzymes that will serve as useful catalysts. A further important focus of our work is gaining insight into enzymes that cause drug resistance, with applications in the health sector. By this approach to enzyme modification and characterization, we will contribute to bridge the gap between disciplines such as Bio-Organic Chemistry, Biochemistry and Bio-informatics that are all essential to the further development of modern enzymology.


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