Application L2311 Cover des Buches Biocatalyst Immobilization showing a 3D illustration of an enzyme in rainbow colours against a blue and black background

New enzymatic reactor designs: From enzymatic batch to 3D microreactors and monoliths

Kim Shortall, Katarzyna Szymańska, Cristina Carucci, Tewfik Soulimane, and Edmond Magner

In: Biocatalyst Immobilization, Foundations and Applications, 2022

This book chapter serves as a fundamental tutorial review into different reactor designs conceived and demonstrated in biocatalytic applications and how they integrate with enzyme immobilization strategies.



“The use of enzymes in biocatalysis is often hampered by their instability and difficult recovery and reuse. Immobilization of enzymes on solid supports for use in enzymatic reactors can overcome these drawbacks, leading to increased activity and stability as well as ease of recovery from reaction media and potential reuse. A variety of supports have been extensively explored for use as supports for immobilized enzymes in biocatalytic reactors. The characteristics of the support used can dictate the reactor mode that can be utilized, be it batch or continuous flow. We discuss the use of a selection of porous supports for the immobilization of enzymes for use in biocatalytic reactors, focusing on mesoporous silicates and metal organic frameworks for batch synthesis and silica monoliths and nanoporous gold in continuous processing.”



  • “The use of stirred tank reactors can result in mechanical attrition, so supports must be robust, with some processes occurring for up to 1000 cycles. The use of rotating bed reactors (RBRs) can address these issues, as they enable the simultaneous mixing and percolation of reactants through a bed of heterogeneous catalysts placed in a cylindrical basket that is mounted at the end of the shaft, thus avoiding destruction of the catalyst, enhancing mass transport, and facilitating separation of the catalyst.”

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