Advanced Course

Biocatalysis and Protein Engineering

(online or on-site participation possible)

Course description

The Advanced Course Biocatalysis aims to familiarize participants with the integrated, interdisciplinary approach required to utilize the catalytic potential of enzymes and whole cells for the production of useful compounds. Organic chemists, enzymologists, microbiologists and (bio)chemical engineers from the faculty staff of Delft University of Technology and other universities, together with invited international experts from industry, will offer a selection of theory and practice. In this way, the course will provide an intensive and in-depth treatment of the state of the art and the necessary link between fundamental knowledge and practical applications in industrial scale processes.

Note: A limited number of fellowships is available for PhD students (reduced fee).

Online or on-site participation

It will be possible to attend this course online as well as on-site. Online would mean you follow the course real-time, but via ZOOM. It will be possible to attend the social events online, to interact with the participants and speakers, but our experience is that after the course most participants are tired. Therefore it is also possible to make separate appointments with the speakers from the course (during or after the course). Up until 4 weeks in advance of the course you can change your preference of participating.
Feel free to contact us at if you have any questions.

17 – 21 April 2023

Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands


Advanced Course Biocatalysis and Protein Engineering

For a better understanding of the lectures and to stimulate active participation by those attending, this intensive one-week course combines lectures with practical demonstrations. The course will be given in English.


During the lectures attention will be paid to the following questions:

  •  When is biocatalysis the preferred method?
  • Which type of biocatalysis should be used?
  • How to obtain / improve this biocatalyst?
  • Which reaction types can be carried out?
  • How to perform and monitor the conversion?
  • How to optimize the reaction conditions?

Study load

The course (including preparatory materials) is valued 40 hours of work.

Who should attend?

This Advanced Course is aimed at professionals (MSc, PhD or equivalent experience) in biochemical engineering, organic chemistry, fermentation technology, biochemistry or microbiology with a basic working knowledge of the other disciplines. The course is primarily aimed at those already employed in industry who wish to update their theoretical knowledge and practical insight in this field. In addition, this Advanced Course is an option in the two-year postgraduate programs of Delft University of Technology.


Program of 2023

Monday, 17 April 2023
09.00 Outlook of the course Ulf Hanefeld
09.30 Principles and applications of enantioselection Caroline Paul
10.45 Industrial Applications of Biocatalysis for Antibiotic and Pharmaceutical synthesis Burghard König
12.00 Case study: Reactions of serine hydrolases Ulf Hanefeld
12.45 Lunch
13.45 Team presentations case study Ulf Hanefeld
15.00 Engineering nature’s enzyme repertoire for food, pharma and biofuels René de Jong
16.15 Economics and Implementation of Biocatalytic Processes John Woodley
18.00 Drinks and Dinner
Tuesday, 18 April 2023
09.00 Themes of the day Caroline Paul
09.15 From natural environment to biocatalyst Gerard Muyzer
10.30 Reaction engineering: optimizing the medium for enzymatic conversions Caroline Paul
11.45 Novel enzymes and expanding the reaction space Frank Hollmann
12.45 Group picture and Lunch
13.45 Rational design and directed evolution of enzymes Sandy Schmidt
15.30 Immobilization of biocatalysts Roger Sheldon
17.10 End of the day
Wednesday, 19 April 2023
09.00 Themes of the day Ulf Hanefeld
09.15 Discovery and engineering of cofactor-dependent enzymes Marco Fraaije
10.30 Continuation: Discovery and engineering of cofactor-dependent enzymes Marco Fraaije
11.30 Non-aqueous biocatalysis Ulf Hanefeld
13.00 Lunch
14.15 Biocatalysis – A tool for sustainable production of ester-based surfactants Oliver Thum
15.30 Computer practical: PyMOL Peter Leon Hagedoorn
18.10 End of the day
Thursday, 20 April 2023
09.00 Themes of the day Adrie Straathof
09.15 From biotransformation towards industrial process Adrie Straathof
11.30 Industrial applications of immobilized enzymes Alessandra Basso
12.45 Lunch
13.45 Fundamentals and application of BioRedox Catalysis Frank Hollmann
15.00 Enzymes for lignocellulose degradation Mirjam Kabel
16.00 Enzyme-catalysed synthesis of C-C bonds: hydroxynitrile lyase/oxynitrilase Ulf Hanefeld
16.45 Plenary questions/discussions with teachers
18.30 Course dinner
Friday, 21 April 2023
09.00 Themes of the day
09.15 Biocatalytic reduction reactions Frank Hollmann
10.15 Biocatalytic oxidation and oxyfunctionalization reactions Frank Hollmann
11.15 Biocatalytic processes to oxyfunctionalised products Martin Schürmann
12.15 Lunch
13.00 Biocatalysts for the synthesis of chiral amines Bernhard Hauer
14.15 An industrial perspective from the world of flavors and fragrances Andreas Taglieber
15.15 Evaluation of the course Frank Hollmann
15.3o Farewell drink

The course will be held at:

Faculty of Applied Sciences (building 58)
Department of Biotechnology
Delft University of Technology
Van der Maasweg 9
2629 HZ Delft
The Netherlands
P +31 (0)15 278 1922
F +31 (0)15 278 2355


Deadline for registration is 27 March 2023

The course fee is:

Early Bird €*2.500
Regular Fee €2.750
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME/Startups/scaleups) €**1.750
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME/Startups/scaleups) of Biotech Campus Delft **1.250
PhD Students **1.250

*To be eligible for the reduced early bird fee you need to register before 6 February 2023. If this date is exceeded, the regular fee applies.

**A limited number of fellowships is available for PhD students and SME’s (small/medium enterprise). Fellowships will be available on a first-come-first-serve basis. To apply as to one of these fellowships, please include a copy either of your registration as a PhD student from your university or a proof of the SME-status of the company you work at.

The fee includes course materials, lunches and the buffets and the course dinners as indicated on the program. The fee does not cover other meals or lodging. Hotel accommodation can be arranged at your request.

The course fee is preferably paid by bank transfer. Payment by PayPal is possible. TU Delft employees can use their internal (project) code.

Preparatory texts will be sent one month before start of the course and after receipt of the course fee. The complete set of course books will be supplied at the start of the course.

In the event of your cancellation before 20 February 2023 , a full refund will be granted. After this date, a 25% fee charge can be made.

Delay of payment past the final deadline as indicated on the invoice may result in cancellation of entry to the course. Re-entry is only possible in case of vacancies and the regular fee will be applied. Payment terms and deadlines will be indicated on the invoice and/or provided in an e-mail after registration, but the course fee should always be paid before the start of the course.

When the number of participants is too low to have a fruitful course, the Institute BioTech Delft will cancel the event no later than six weeks before the start of the course. The course fee will be reimbursed within three weeks after cancellation. In case a speaker will not be able to present his/her lecture, due to unforeseen circumstances, BioTech Delft will arrange an equivalent replacement.


Course board

Prof. Ulf Hanefeld

Ulf Hanefeld is a full professor in Biocatalysis at Delft University of Technology. He was born in Köln, Germany, and grew up in then (West) Berlin and London. In 1993 he received his PhD from the Georg-August-Universität zu Göttingen, having performed the research both in Göttingen (Prof. H. Laatsch) and Seattle (Prof. H. G. Floss). After postdoctoral years with Prof. C. W. Rees (Imperial College London), Prof. J. Staunton (Cambridge) and Prof.  J. J. Heijnen and Dr. A. J. J. Straathof (TU Delft), he received a fellowship from the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW). He rose through the ranks at the Technische Universiteit Delft and his research in Delft focuses on enzymes and enzyme immobilisation for organic synthesis.

Faculty staff

Prof. Frank Hollmann

After his MSc in Chemistry at the University of Bonn (Germany), Frank Hollmann completed his PhD thesis at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich), Switzerland. After working as a postdoc at the Max-Planck-Institute for Coal Research (Germany) and as R&D manager at Evonik Industries (Germany ), he became an Assistant Professor at the Delft University of Technology in 2008. His main research interests are the application of oxidoreductases for organic synthesis and green chemistry using enzymes.

Dr. Adrie Straathof

Adrie Straathof is Associate Professor in the Bioprocess Engineering group of the Department of Biotechnology of the Delft University of Technology. Previously he was Assistant Professor and Ph.D. student in the Biokinetics and Organic Chemistry groups, respectively, at the same university. He was visiting professor at UNICAMP, Campinas (Brazil), and at ETH Zurich (Switzerland). He was programme leader of the Bulk Chemicals program in the B-BASIC (biobased sustainable industrial chemicals) consortium. His research interests are (a) enzymatic and microbial manufacturing of fine chemicals, bulk chemicals, and biofuels; (b) in-situ  bioproduct recovery using crystallization, adsorption, extraction, membrane permeation; (c) model based and experimental bioprocess integration; and (d) kinetics and thermodynamics for biotechnological processes.

Dr. Caroline Paul

Caroline Emilie Paul received her Honours BSc and MSc in Biological Chemistry at the University of Toronto and her PhD in Bioorganic Chemistry at the University of Oviedo with Profs. V. Gotor-Fernández and I. Lavandera with research stays in Graz (Prof. W. Kroutil) and Delft (Prof. F. Hollmann). After postdoctoral work as a Marie Curie Fellow at TU Delft, she carried out her research interests on biomimetic cofactors for oxidoreductases with a NWO VENI grant at Wageningen University. Since 2018 she is an Assistant Professor in Biocatalysis at TU Delft.

Guest lecturers

Dr. Allesandra Basso

Purolite, Cardiff, United Kingdom

Dr. Bernhard Hauer

University Stuttgart, Dept. of Biological Engineering, Stuttgart, Germany

Prof. Dick Janssen

University of Groningen, Dept. of Biochemistry, Groningen, the Netherlands

Dr. René de Jong

DSM Food and Beverage, Delft, the Netherlands

Dr. Burghard König

Koenig & Funk Biotech Ltd., Berlin, Germany

Prof. Gerard Muyzer

Gerard Muyzer started his scientific career in molecular paleontology using antibodies to study the macromolecular remains in fossil shells and dinosaur bones. Inspired by the work of the American scientists Norman Pace and David Stahl, he changed his research interests from dinosaurs to microbes. Prof. Muyzer worked at the Max-Planck-Institute for Marine Microbiology, the Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research, and Delft University of Technology. Currently he is a full Professor in Microbial Systems Ecology at the University of Amsterdam. In 2012 he received a prestigious ERC Advanced Grant on a project entitled The Paradox of Sulfur Bacteria in Soda Lakes, in which he will try to obtain a comprehensive understanding of the diversity and ecophysiology of sulfur bacteria in soda lakes, their niche differentiation and the molecular mechanisms by which they adapt to the extreme halo-alkaline conditions.

Prof. Roger Sheldon

CLEA Technologies B.V., Delft, the Netherlands

Dr. Andreas Taglieber

Firmenich SA, Geneva, Switzerland

Dr. Oliver Thum

Evonik Goldschmidt GmbH, Essen, Germany

Prof. John Woodley

DTU Technical University Denmark, Lyngby, Denmark

Dr. Mirjam Kabel

Wageningen University & Research, the Netherlands

Dr. Martin Schürmann

InnoSyn BV, Geleen, the Netherlands

Dr. Sandy Schmidt

Department of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Biology,  RU Groningen, the Netherlands

Coordinators workshop

Prof. Peter Leon Hagedoorn

Delft University of Technology, Delft, the Netherlands


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