EPSRC logo

Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/H035222/1
Principal Investigator: Rosser, Professor SJ
Other Investigators:
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: School of Life Sciences
Organisation: University of Glasgow
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 26 April 2010 Ends: 16 November 2012 Value (£): 224,604
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Chemical Biology Materials Synthesis & Growth
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
There is a clear societal, economic and environmental benefit to developing cold water cleaning technology for example in the developed world the significant reduction in energy requirements will have economic benefit to users and the UK economy by reducing energy bills associated with heating water (UK government statistics suggest that the average UK washing machine is used for 270 wash cycles per year with each cycle using 16 L of water. The cost of heating that water (assuming 10 p/kWh and 2.4 M households) is estimated to be in the order of 184 million); this reduction in energy demand will also reduce greenhouse gas emissions from power generation. People share a common desire to wear clean clothes, regardless of their wealth or nationality. Current detergent formulations are a complex mixture of reagents, but in terms of their cleaning composition but can broadly be considered to contain (i) surfactants to solubilise fabric-based stains; (ii) enzymes to digest stains and (iii) bleaches to degrade and increase the hydrophillicity of coloured stains. Typically, these formulations require non-ambient temperature water to be effective. A significant problem associated with washing at lower temperatures is the removal of fats and oils below 35 C, preventing their facile removal from fabrics. While the technological problems of cleaning in cold water are many-fold, ultimately it is the limited performance of enzymes at these temperatures that are major contributors to the problem.Several technical issues must be addressed to overcome these issues. The key elements are the inefficient activity of lipase enzymes at low temperatures and the incompatibility of enzymes both with other enzymes and other components in the formulation limit the application and performance of the most aggressive formulations. This proposal will focus on the development of technology that uses state of the art molecular biology to engineer cold active lipases and enables the currently incompatible formulation components to be applied together. This will be achieved by the encapsulation of enzymes and other components in novel degradable polymers.
Key Findings
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Potential use in non-academic contexts
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Description This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Date Materialised
Sectors submitted by the Researcher
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Project URL:  
Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.gla.ac.uk