Industrial enzymes are obtained from prokaryotes as well as unicelluar
eucaryotics. Less than 5 % of all the microbial species have been isolated and
characterized, therefore only a limited genetic information present in them is
know and use. In particular, adaptation of microorganisms to extreme
environmental conditions force them to develop special molecular components and
appropriate ... biochemical strategies. Such metabolic abilities might have
biotechnological applications as well as effective mechanisms against DNA
damage. The study of these extremophiles microorganisms could improve the
information about life origin as well as their strategies for adapting to
environment where they survive. Under this context, it is accepted today that
these microorganisms constitute an important molecules resource with industrial
interest and so constitute an excellent source for new biotechnological
applications. One method to find strains with new properties is to search in
ecosystems with special characteristics. The microorganisms present in
Antarctica resist very low temperatures, high UV levels of irradiation, as well
as luminosity, oxygen and water vapor in air. This proposal searches for
microorganisms bioproducts from Antarctica with industrial interest, for the
development of biotechnology in Uruguay and the region
1. Isolation of microorganisms producers of metabolites with industrial
interest e.g. enzymes and biopolymers
2. Microorganisms characterization by molecular techniques. Comparison of the
Antarctic microorganisms isolated with other no Antarctic strains with similar
3. Study of the best culture conditions for production of enzymes, biopolymers
and other metabolites at laboratory scale.
4. Economic study viability for industrial production of products selected.
With these results we expect to:
1. Increase the strains and genes data base with biotechnological interest.
2. Improve the knowledge about microorganisms which express the same activity
isolated from different environmental conditions
3. Development of sustainable industrial processes from the characterized
4. Determination of the principal factors that will affect the main activities
in the industrial processes
5. Find partners to develop a biotechnological industry in Uruguay.