Partnering opportunity

OPTOBIOTICS: Novel antibacterial proteins activated by blue light


A Spanish public research institution has developed a chimeric protein that, when expressed in bacteria, changes its structure upon absorption of blue light, thus generating protein aggregates (amyloids) that inhibit bacterial growth Industrial partners from the pharmaceutical industry are being sought to collaborate through a patent licence agreement

Partner sought

Industrial partners from the pharmaceutical industry are being sought to collaborate through a patent licence agreement


In this patent, the power of optogenetics to engineer proteins as light-responsive switches has been used to control the balance between solubility and amyloid aggregation for LOV2-WH1, a chimera between the plant blue light-responsive domain LOV2 and the bacterial prion-like protein RepA-WH1. In the darkness and in vitro, LOV2-WH1 nucleates the irreversible assembly of amyloid fibres into a hydrogel. However, under blue light illumination LOV2-WH1 assembles as soluble oligomers. When expressed in the bacterium Escherichia coli, LOV2-WH1 forms in the darkness large intracellular amyloid inclusions compatible with bacterial proliferation. Strikingly, under blue light LOV2-WH1 aggregates decrease in size while they become detrimental for bacterial growth. LOV2-WH1 optogenetics governs the assembly of mutually exclusive inert amyloid fibres or cytotoxic oligomers, thus enabling the navigation of the conformational landscape of protein amyloidogenesis to generate a new kind of photo-activated anti-bacterial devices (optobiotics).

Advantages and innovations

A synthetic protein construction (LOV2-WH1) is activated as an anti-microbial by a physical, harmless stimulus: blue light Blue light absorption by LOV2-WH1 stimulates the assembly of anti-bacterial protein particles whereas, in the darkness, these are inert Mobilization of LOV2-WH1 through vectors/bacteriophages would enable its usage against a broad spectrum of bacterial pathogens LOV2-WH1 is amenable to photo-therapy procedures aiming to combat bacterial skin infections, or to de-contaminate pathogens from surfaces In mixed bacterial populations assembled in an industrial bioprocess, optogenetic activation of LOV2-WH1 can be used to selectively eliminate a subpopulation, e.g. once achieved its intended task

Development stage

Available for demonstration

Intellectual Property Rights (IPR)

Patent(s) applied for but not yet granted

Register your interest

How it works

  • Tell us about yourself
  • We’ll discuss with you
  • We put the right partners in touch

EEN help you find the right partner, rather than you going it alone.

Our role is to review and collate the most suitable submissions, and then send them to the client who posted the opportunity. We consult with you, and the client, to make the process professional and easy.

These are live opportunities. Your registration of interest on the site is just like a professional approach to a business at a networking event. To stand the best chance of success, make your submission really sing. Sell why the client who posted the opportunity should work with you. Excite them. Ask questions. Try and avoid copy and pasting words from elsewhere.

Once the client has chosen their partner, we'll introduce them over email and keep in touch with both parties to see how it's going. Sometimes things progress quickly. Sometimes because of changing priorities for either party, things progress slowly, but you never know - your next big business break could start right here.

?What value does EEN add?
This is your pitch: remember to include your unique selling points (USP) and why someone would want to do business with you
Tell us why you are a good fit for this opportunity, and why you think you're the right people for this partnership
If there's anything additional, or commercially sensitive you'd like to know about this opportunity, please let us know

When you entered your email address above, we emailed you a code to verify you're human and have access to that account.

?What's this?

What next?

To finish up, we just need some extra details about you and your company