Twyman Research Management
Specialist consultants in
scientific project development,
management and presentation
to Twyman Research Management
Twyman Research Management Ltd is a UK company that specializes in scientific project development, management and presentation, including the preparation of research proposals, project management and reporting, project dissemination and complementary activities, and expert assistance with the preparation, editing and revision of scientific manuscripts.
We have been working for more than 20 years to develop and manage research projects and improve the quality of scientific publications.
Launch of Horizon 2020 project InnCoCells
May 2021 - We are pleased to announce the launch of InnCoCells, a four-year Horizon 2020 project involving 17 partners from 11 European countries, with TRM Ltd representing the United Kingdom. The overall aim of the project is to revolutionize the way cosmetic ingredients are discovered and manufactured by developing sustainable production processes based on plants. TRM is leading work package 7, dealing with the project's dissemination and communication activities. The project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement no. 101000373.
For more information, see the project website here.
Article of the Month
Chicory is used as a salad leaf and also as an industrial source of the food additive inulin. However, the waste biomass left after inulin extraction is full of bioactive molecules that can be extracted to gain additional value. In September's article of the month, Häkkinen et al. show that chicory extracts prepared using a variety of solvents and techniques possess a remarkable range of biological activities, including the ability to suppress the growth of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and to prevent biofilm formation by the yeast Candida albicans. Plants such as chicory could therefore be used in the future as a source of natural antimicrobial compounds to address the shortage of new antibiotics in the development pipeline. Furthermore, the use of waste fractions from an existing industrial process provides a way to valorize plant material that is usually discarded or incinerated.
Article details: Häkkinen ST et al. (2021) Chicory extracts and sesquiterpene lactones show potent activity against bacterial and fungal pathogens. Pharmaceuticals 14 (9) 941.
Image shows a chicory flower.
Image credit: Jim/Code Poet (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0).
The production of recombinant proteins in plants rather than microbes or mammalian cells can be be advantageous in terms of speed, safety and scalability, but downstream processing and purification can be more challenging because the product is mixed with a large number of host cell proteins. In August's article of the month, Bernau et al. show how the mathematical modeling of chromatography can predict the most suitable conditions for protein purification, reducing the costs of process optimization. They identified the main sources of variation resulting from the selection of different chromatography settings, but also found that cultivation conditions such as the greenhouse temperature can have a profound impact on the behavior of host cell proteins and the corresponding chromatography binding parameters. The application of such models can help to improve the purification process for pharmaceutical proteins such as therapeutic antibodies.
Article details: Bernau CR et al. (2021) Precision analysis for the determination of steric mass action parameters using eight tobacco host cell proteins. J Chromatogr A 1652, 462379.
Image shows a space-filling model of the most abundant plant host cell protein, the enzyme RuBisCO.
Image credit: wwPDB, created with NGL Viewer.
The common clothes moth (Tineola bisselliella) is one of the few insect species that can digest keratin, the major protein component of wool and some other natural fabrics (as well as natural structures such as hair, nails and feathers). Although the adults do not feed, the larvae are notorious pests that destroy clothing and other textiles. In July's article of the month, Schwabe et al. provide insight into the mechanism of keratin digestion by comparing transcriptome datasets from larvae reared exclusively on keratin-rich diet of feathers and those raised on a keratin-free diet. The feather diet induced the expression of more than 30 enzymes, including collagenases and other proteases as well as enzymes that help to reduce disulfide bonds. The identification of specific enzymes that allow larvae to feed on keratin could facilitate the development of targeted control strategies based on enzyme inhibition.
Article details: Schwabe M et al. (2021) Next-generation sequencing analysis of the Tineola bisselliella larval gut transcriptome reveals candidate enzymes for keratin digestion. Genes 12 (8) 1113.