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Real-time pH monitoring of industrially relevant enzymatic reactions in a microfluidic side-entry reactor (μSER) shows potential for pH control

Gruber, P; Marques, MP; Sulzer, P; Wohlgemuth, R; Mayr, T; Baganz, F; Szita, N; (2017) Real-time pH monitoring of industrially relevant enzymatic reactions in a microfluidic side-entry reactor (μSER) shows potential for pH control. Biotechnology Journal , 12 (6) , Article 1600475. 10.1002/biot.201600475. Green open access

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Abstract

Monitoring and control of pH is essential for the control of reaction conditions and reaction progress for any biocatalytic or biotechnological process. Microfluidic enzymatic reactors are increasingly proposed for process development, however typically lack instrumentation, such as pH monitoring. We present a microfluidic side-entry reactor (μSER) and demonstrate for the first time real-time pH monitoring of the progression of an enzymatic reaction in a microfluidic reactor as a first step towards achieving pH control. Two different types of optical pH sensors were integrated at several positions in the reactor channel which enabled pH monitoring between pH 3.5 and pH 8.5, thus a broader range than typically reported. The sensors withstood the thermal bonding temperatures typical of microfluidic device fabrication. Additionally, fluidic inputs along the reaction channel were implemented to adjust the pH of the reaction. Time-course profiles of pH were recorded for a transketolase and a penicillin G acylase catalyzed reaction. Without pH adjustment, the former showed a pH increase of 1 pH unit and the latter a pH decrease of about 2.5 pH units. With pH adjustment, the pH drop of the penicillin G acylase catalyzed reaction was significantly attenuated, the reaction condition kept at a pH suitable for the operation of the enzyme, and the product yield increased. This contribution represents a further step towards fully instrumented and controlled microfluidic reactors for biocatalytic process development.

Type: Article
Title: Real-time pH monitoring of industrially relevant enzymatic reactions in a microfluidic side-entry reactor (μSER) shows potential for pH control
Location: Germany
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1002/biot.201600475
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/biot.201600475
Language: English
Additional information: © 2017 The Authors. Biotechnology Journal published by Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Microfluidic reactor, microreactor, online monitoring, optical sensor, pH sensor, penicillin G acylase, side-entry reactor, transketolase
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Biochemical Engineering
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1537222
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