Prof. Dr. Marco W. Fraaije

Molecular Enzymology research group, University of Groningen
Nijenborgh 4, 9747AG Groningen, The Netherlands


Description of PI principally associated with DECADES
After a PhD in biochemistry at the university of Wageningen (NL), Prof. Marco Fraaije received a long-term EMBO fellowship for a postdoctoral research project in the protein crystallography laboratory of Prof. Andrea Mattevi (Pavia, IT). After that, he was appointed at the university of Groningen (NL) and started his own research group. Prof. Marco Fraaije’s research focuses on the discovery and knowledge-based engineering of cofactor-dependent redox enzymes. Through detailed structural and mechanistic studies, new insights into the molecular functioning have been obtained, which has fueled novel enzyme redesign strategies. In addition, his research has led to the development of several industrially relevant enzymes.

Besides having a strong track record in the discovery and engineering of redox enzymes, Fraaije actively contributes to the biocatalysis community by organizing major scientific conferences and chairing (inter)national scientific committees. His scientific achievements have been the basis for awarding him the international BIOCAT-science award. Fraaije’s team is committed to both fundamental and application-oriented research, of which the latter occur in PPP projects in close collaboration with a variety of biotechnology companies. Prof. Fraaije has coauthored more than 250 peer-reviewed publications and patents and has an h-index of 70 (Google Scholar, June 2023).

Key Research Facilities, Infrastructure and Equipment
Research facilities include fully equipped molecular biology and (bio)chemistry laboratories. This includes all necessary equipment and licenses for growing various recombinant organisms, for preparation and screening of mutant libraries, for producing and purifying enzymes, for kinetic and chemical analyses of enzymes. Specialized instruments are in place for rapid enzyme kinetic analyses. Except for laboratory equipment, also software and expertise in computational enzyme engineering is available.

Hosting University
The Molecular Enzymology group is part of the Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute (GBB); a research institute at the faculty of Science and Engineering of the university of Groningen dedicated to biomolecular research.

Relevant Publications and/or Research / Innovation Product
Selection of recent papers:

  • Guo Y, Alvigini L, … Fraaije MW (2022) Structure- and computational-aided engineering of an oxidase to produce isoeugenol from a lignin-derived compound. Nat Commun. 13, 7195.
  • Drenth J, Yang G, Paul CE, Fraaije MW (2022) A tailor-made deazaflavin-mediated recycling system for artificial nicotinamide cofactor biomimetics. ACS Catal. 11, 11561
  • Lee M, Drenth J, Trajkovic M, de Jong RM, Fraaije MW (2022) Introducing an artificial deazaflavin cofactor in Escherichia coli and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. ACS Synth Biol. 11, 938
  • Tong Y, Lee M, Drenth J, Fraaije MW (2021) Flavin-tag: a facile method for site-specific labeling of proteins with a flavin fluorophore. Bioconjug Chem. 32, 1559
  • Aalbers FS, Fürst MJLJ, … Fraaije MW (2020) Approaching boiling point stability of an alcohol dehydrogenase through computationally-guided enzyme engineering. Elife 9, e54639
  • Martin C, Trajkovic M, Fraaije MW (2020) production of hydroxy acids through selective double oxidation of diols by a flavoprotein alcohol oxidase. Angew Chem Int Ed Engl 59, 4869
  • Nicoll CR, Bailleul G, Fiorentini F, Mascotti ML, Fraaije MW, Mattevi A. (2020) Ancestral-sequence reconstruction unveils the structural basis of function in mammalian FMOs. Nat. Struct. Mol. Biol. 27, 14