Identify from Nature’s diversity the best performing native enzymes

Proteus has built a unique collection of more than 6000 strains (bacteria, archaea, yeast, fungi, microalgae) including extremophiles (microorganisms leaving in extreme environments, such as high temperature, high salinity, etc). More than 1000 strains are sequenced and represent a « mine » of new native enzymes which can be selected using bioinformatic tools. Proteus can also identify new strains in specific environement, using enrichments and isolation of new strains under selective pressure, perform studies of strain culture conditions (aerobiosis, anaerobiosis) and strains screening in order to identify specific activities.

Unique collection including extremophiles

We preserve and nurture a treasure : a wide and unique collection of Bacteria, Archaea, fungi and microalgae. Many of them live under extreme conditions at boiling temperatures or higher in hot springs or abyssal hydrothermal vents. Other live under extremely acid or alkaline conditions, or at very low temperatures. They provide extremely robust backbones for highly demanding innovative industrial biotechnology application.

Proteus collection of strain scheme

Studies of strain culture conditions (aerobiosis, anaerobiosis) – in vivo screening

Our highly skilled microbiologists optimize growth for all these microorganisms, wether they are aerobic or strictly anaerobic, The objective can be as simple as obtaining more biomass or much more difficult such as favouring a specific metabolic route or the production of a metabolite or an enzyme.

We also routinely screen our strains for specific features such as enzymatic activities but also the capacity to use non conventional carbon (insoluble in water, gazeous, toxic chemical substances), nitrogen (organic and inorganic compounds) or sulfur sources etc.

Screening of extremophiles for novel enzymes, stable in harsh physico-chimical conditions (temperature, pH, presence of chemicals…) Example of thermostable enzymes

Enrichments and isolation of new strains under selective pressure

A very powerful method to obtain a microorganism having specific features is to isolate it from environmental samples. For example, 1g of soil contains up to 1000 different taxons and much more different strains ! Selecting a suitable environmental sample as a source and applying the right selective pressure allows the isolation of microorganisms having the required caracteristics.


Example with strain P3686

The goal was to identify activities on 2-chlorobutyramide from
the isolation of new strains:

  • 43 strains growing on 2-chlorobutyramide as sole carbon source
  • 38 confirmed through GC analysis
  • 28 are enantioselective for one or the other enantiomer of the substrate


  • Enantioselective
  • 100% conversion of enantiomer_2 after 7 hours at 30°C