New enzymatic carbon dioxide capture from exhaust fumes.

CO2 is the most abundant greenhouse gas, its elimination crucial to slow down global warming. So, reduction of CO2 is one of the most important challenges for an eco-friendly and sustainable production of energy. Carbonic Anhydrases (CA) are a family of metalloenzymes that catalyze the conversion of carbon dioxide to carbonic acid: CO2 + H2O -> H2CO3. Nature already found a solution as CA enables cells to fix carbon, regulate pH and process ion transport.


Conventional solvent technologies for CO2 elimination with chemical promoters have disadvantageous properties such as being corrosive, volatile and toxic. Thus, there is an unmet need for alternative solutions.

Our Solution

Scientists at the University of Göttingen isolated, cloned and characterized a new member of carbonic anhydrase (CA) for use as a new biocatalytic approach for CO2 fixation. This unique CA was isolated form a marine sponge.

The new CA (Astrosclerin-3) is as powerful as common bovine CA. Wilbur-Anderson activity assay (A) and successful over-expression and purification of Astrosclerin-3 (B). X = inhibitor for CA. Source: Prof. Dr. Daniel Jackson.


  • High thermo-stability.
  • Resistance to high salinity.
  • Active even at low and high temperature.
  • Extremely powerful enzyme catalyst for conversion of CO2.
  • Can be used in solvents, which are non-corrosive, non-volatile and non-toxic.
  • Low sequence homology to other CA.


  • CO2 elimination/fixation from exhausts or effluents.
  • Use in calcification processes.
  • Elimination of toxic carbon disulfide.
  • As biosensors e.g. determination of pH or zinc.

Developmental Status

Full enzymatic characterization in laboratory settings.

Patent Status

We are licensing this enzyme technology for further development (no IPR).


  • Ordova et al.: Cloning, characterization and sulfonamide inhibition studies of an a-carbonic anhydrase from the living fossil sponge Astrosclera willeyana. Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry, 2012, 20.
  • Jackson et al.: Sponge Paleogenomics Reveals an Ancient Role for Carbonic Anhydrase in Skeletogenesis. Science, 2007, 316.


Dr. Stefan Uhle
Patent Manager Life Science
E-Mail: suhle(at)
Tel.: +49 551 30724 154
Reference: BioC-1057-SUG


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