Biocatalysis at the service of green chemistry

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Arkema Malaysia Thiochemicals, Arkema’s subsidiary in Malaysia, and the Monash University Malaysia (MUM) in Kuala Lumpur have signed a research partnership over 3 years of collaboration during which time MUM researchers will be able to make their resources available to the local Arkema teams. The goal: to develop more efficient biocatalysts for Arkema’s Thiochemicals business.
The Kerteh plant is Arkema’s brand new thiochemical platform in Asia

This agreement aims to develop biocatalysts to replace traditional chemical catalysts, as well as certain raw materials for the production of sulfur derivatives. Arkema’s researchers are already developing innovative processes based on biotechnologies, innovations that are protected by several worldwide patents. The goal of the research to be conducted jointly with MUM scientists consists in developing new biocatalysts for sulfur molecules within the portfolio of Arkema’s Thiochemicals BU.

What will these biocatalysts bring?

Biocatalysts are developed from enzymes produced by living organisms (bacteria, yeasts, fungi) and obtained through fermentation from renewable raw materials (glucose, sucrose, starch, cellulose, glycerol, etc.).


Enzymatic processes, taking place at ambient temperature, in water, are highly selective. Significant progress has been made in the last ten years to attain highly competitive performances compared to traditional chemical processes.

These biocatalysts are poised to yield plenty of advances: simpler processes, safer substances and operations, lower energy consumption, use of renewable resources, and contribution to the circular economy.


Hence these bioprocesses enable Arkema to take a further step towards ever greener chemistry, while bringing durable solutions that contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set out by the United Nations, and in particular, with this project, SDG12 “Responsible Consumption and Production”.