Swissaustral and Ginkgo Bioworks partner to develop improved industrial enzymes

Thursday, July 27, 2017 General News
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ATHENS, Ga. and BOSTON, July 27, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Ginkgo Bioworks, the organism

company, and Swissaustral, a leader in the development of novel enzymatic products and processes from extremophiles, announced a new partnership to design strains of microorganisms that will produce industrial enzymes at scale. These enzymes will
be used as a safe, low-energy replacement for traditional chemical reaction processes in industries such as pharmaceuticals, textiles, foods and household goods.

Swissaustral brings deep expertise in identifying enzymes from microbes that live in extreme environments, such as high or low temperatures, pH levels and salt concentrations, also called extremophilic enzymes, which are traditionally difficult to work with at industrial scale. Ginkgo's platform for automated organism engineering enables rapid design of industrial microbes that effectively produce enzymes. In partnership with Swissaustral, Ginkgo's organism engineers will use its in-house foundries to improve the production of extremophilic enzymes for industrial applications.

"Teaming up with Ginkgo Bioworks enables us to more rapidly reach industrial markets with our enzymes," said Felipe Sarmiento, Swissaustral's Business Innovation Director for North America. "Ginkgo's expansive platform technology and expertise are the missing pieces needed to unlock the potential of our extremophilic enzymes for improving industrial processes."

Enzymes – the biological machines that power living cells – can be used to perform high temperature synthesis of pharmaceuticals or active ingredients, alkaline fiber modifications and low-temperature, energy-saving break down of protein or fat stains, among other everyday applications. For example, one of Swissaustral's enzymes, Catalase, breaks down hydrogen peroxide for textiles wastewater bio-remediation, food preservation, and personal care applications. Swissaustral's extremophilic Catalase functions at a wide range of temperatures and pHs, making it an ideal and reliable enzyme across many applications.

"Swissaustral is an exciting new partner for us as we expand into industrial enzymes. This partnership underscores the breadth of applications possible with Ginkgo's platform technology," said Jason Kelly, CEO and co-founder at Ginkgo Bioworks. "Swissaustral's enzymes are robust, versatile and create unique value in the marketplace – we're thrilled to work together."

About Swissaustral  Swissaustral is a worldwide specialist in Extreme Biotechnology developing solutions for non-standard technological challenges in Life Sciences and other industries with bio-needs. The company exploits the potential of extreme microorganisms (extremophiles) and their unexplored metabolic pathways as a unique and diverse source of biotechnological innovation. For more information, visit

About Ginkgo Bioworks  Headquartered in Boston, Ginkgo Bioworks uses the most advanced technology on the planet—biology—to grow products instead of manufacturing them. The company's technology platform is bringing biotechnology into consumer goods markets, enabling fragrance, cosmetic, nutrition, and food companies to make better products. For more information, visit

Media Contact:  Grace Emery  (347) 230 - 6640


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SOURCE Ginkgo Bioworks

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