Institut für Verfahrenstechnik, Umwelttechnik und Techn. Biowissenschaften
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Leiter Projektgruppe

Privatdoz. Mag.rer.nat. Dr. Bernhard Seiboth


Seiboth Project Group

Leiter: Privatdoz. Mag.rer.nat. Dr. Bernhard Seiboth

 

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Research of this group is focused on cell design and engineering of filamentous fungi, in particular Trichoderma reesei. The ascomycete T. reesei (syn: Hypocrea jecorina) is today the main industrial source for different enzyme preparations including cellulases and hemicellulases. Its enzymes are applied for different industrial applications in the textile, feed and food industry. These Carbohydrate Active Enzymes (CAZymes) are employed for the depolymerization of plant biomass to simple carbohydrates such as glucose, xylose or arabinose which are then further converted to other bioproducts, platform chemicals or biofuels.

Our research focuses on the improvement of recombinant enzyme and protein production by using systems biotechnological tools to analyze production relevant processes and design tailor-made fungal strains. We concentrate our research efforts on the identification and regulation of novel catabolic pathways of these sugars and the regulatory processes which govern the expression of Carbohydrate Active Enzymes (CAZymes). A further focus is therefore also on new approaches to improve the genetic tools for the molecular engineering of filamentous fungi and to speed up strain development improve recombinant protein production in T. reesei. Within the last years the group focused also on other topics including the identification of novel enzymes and proteins for potential industrial application. Our work is funded by publically funded fundamental research projects and industry granted contract research projects. The group participates also in the research area Cell Design and Engineering with one post-doc and three PhD students in the Austrian Center of Industrial Biotechnology (www.acib.at). ACIB is a K2 Center sponsored by the COMET program. The group is also active in the PhD program Molecular and Elemental Imaging in Biosciences (MEIBio).

Bernhard Seiboth studied Microbiology at the University of Vienna and graduated as Dr. rer. nat. in 1996 on "Molecular regulation of cellulase gene expression in Trichoderma reesei". First international experience was gained within two research stays in the group of Pirkko Suominen at Alko Ltd, Helsinki (Finland). In 1996 he was awarded with a one year post-doctoral fellowship (Erwin Schrödinger grant, FWF) for the project "Cloning of genes involved in ER-Golgi vesicle transport in Aspergillus niger" at the TNO Nutrition and Food Research Institute (NL) in the group of Cees A.M.J.J. van den Hondel and Peter Punt. Further Postdoc experience was gained within two EC funded projects (www.eurofung.net) which were focused on filamentous fungi as cell factories for proteins and metabolites. In 2003 he applied successfully for an assistant professor for Molecular Biology of Industrially Applied Fungi at the TU Vienna and holds since 2009 a permanent position. He coorganized the Conference on Fungal Genetics (ECFG8) and the Recombinant Protein Production 6 - A comparative view on host physiology. He is editorial board member of Applied and Environmental Microbiology and Biotechnology Letters. Since 2015 he is P.I. in the Austrian Center of Industrial Biotechnology (www.acib.at).