ACTIVTIY 1: Genomic and culture-based identification of plastic degrading microbes and enzymes

In this activity, we use metagenomics, meta-transcriptomics, whole-genome sequencing and functional genomics to identify microbes and enzymes that depolymerize plastics. This activity will be the fundamental first step towards enzyme-based plastic recycling and will identify plastic degrading microbes and enzymes. The outputs of Activity 1 feed into Activities 2 and 3, in which we will further characterize, then manipulate, these enzymes and microbes to achieve optimal properties for industrial use. Further, in Activity 1, we will develop a large enzyme collection as the ability to relate differences in enzymatic activities to natural sequence diversity, which will be beneficial to enzyme engineering which will be the focus of Activity 2. Our work will be divided into three distinct projects, information coming soon.