Biotechnology and Bioprocess Engineering

, Volume 18, Issue 4, pp 686–696 | Cite as

Enhancement of phenolic compounds oxidation using laccase from Trametes versicolor in a microreactor

  • Ana Jurinjak Tušek
  • Marina Tišma
  • Valentina Bregović
  • Ana Ptičar
  • Želimir Kurtanjek
  • Bruno ZelićEmail author
Research Paper Process Biotechnology


Laccases catalyse the oxidation of a wide range of substrates by a radical-catalyzed reaction mechanism, with a corresponding reduction of oxygen to water in a four-electron transfer process. Due to that, laccases are considered environmentally friendly enzymes, and lately there has been great interest in their use for the transformation and degradation of phenolic compounds. In this work, enzymatic oxidation of catechol and L-DOPA using commercial laccase from Trametes versicolor was performed, in continuously operated microreactors. The main focus of this investigation was to develop a new process for phenolic compounds oxidation, by application of microreactors. For a residence time of 72 s and an inlet oxygen concentration of 0.271 mmol/dm3, catechol conversion of 41.3% was achieved, while approximately the same conversion of L-DOPA (45.0%) was achieved for an inlet oxygen concentration of 0.544 mmol/dm3. The efficiency of microreactor usage for phenolic compounds oxidation was confirmed by calculating the oxidation rates; in the case of catechol oxidation, oxidation rates were in the range from 76.101 to 703.935 g/dm3/d (18–167 fold higher, compared to the case in a macroreactor). To better describe the proposed process, kinetic parameters of catechol oxidation were estimated, using data collected from experiments performed in a microreactor. The maximum reaction rate estimated in microreactor experiments was two times higher than one estimated using the initial reaction rate method from experiments performed in a cuvette. A mathematical model of the process was developed, and validated, using data from independent experiments.


microreactor oxidation of phenolic compounds laccase kinetic measurements mathematical model 


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Copyright information

© The Korean Society for Biotechnology and Bioengineering and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ana Jurinjak Tušek
    • 1
  • Marina Tišma
    • 2
  • Valentina Bregović
    • 1
  • Ana Ptičar
    • 1
  • Želimir Kurtanjek
    • 1
  • Bruno Zelić
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Faculty of Food Technology and BiotechnologyUniversity of ZagrebZagrebCroatia
  2. 2.Faculty of Food Technology OsijekJosip Juraj Strossmayer University of OsijekOsijekCroatia
  3. 3.Faculty of Chemical Engineering and TechnologyUniversity of ZagrebZagrebCroatia

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