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Research seminar featuring Hannah Landecker: Enzymes; Past, Present and Future

April 26 @ 10:00 - 12:00

This research seminar traces the shift from petro-chemistry to the uses of enzymes and cells in the present with the aim to discuss the implications of this development for science, industry and society. In the words of Nobel Prize winner and chemist Frances Arnold, biology is the alternative to petro-chemistry in the present requiring our attention to the versatile metabolisms of enzymes and the ways in which their powers can be harnessed. Equipped with genetic sequencing and engineering tools as well as AI in the shape of AlphaFold, science at the bench has accelerated in establishing bio-based products. Despite how these scientific efforts are clothed in the language of novelty and hype, the turn to enzymes is far from novelty. In fact, the catalytic forces of enzymes have a long history in the human practices of fermentation and feed industry. However, the recent interest in substituting petro-chemicals with enzymes follows in the wake of the environmental damages of fossil fuels. To mitigate these damages, a turn in science towards enzymes is furthered by the increasing value of sustainability. As such, science using enzymes must do more than create surplus value, as the interests in the bio-based turn involve an attachment to science as being to enable an alternative to petro-extractivism. Yet, while the scientific tools have changed as well as the values driving science, how does the past and the present science align and differ in the engagements with enzymes? Where is science in the field of engineering enzymatic workhorses for a sustainable future heading? What are the implications of this transit in matter for society at large?

Please join us for an interdisciplinary research seminar at Roskilde University on April 26, 2024 in 25.01-035  from 10-12 followed by a light lunch. The research seminar serves as the culmination of the research project Green Gold funded by the Independent Research Foundation Denmark (PI associate professor Thomas Budde Christensen, post doc Vibeke Pihl and associate professor Søren Riis)

For more information, please see link: Green Gold Research Seminar 20240426 | Arrangementet (ruc.dk)


April 26
10:00 - 12:00