Enzymes have been exploited by humans for thousands of years in brewing and baking, but it is only recently that biocatalysis has become a mainstream technology for synthesis. Today, enzymes are used extensively in the manufacturing of pharmaceuticals, food, fine chemicals, flavors, fragrances and other products. Enzyme immobilization technology has also developed in parallel as a means of increasing enzyme performance and reducing process costs. The aim of this review is to present and discuss some of the more recent promising technical developments in enzyme immobilization, including the supports used, methods of fabrication, and their application in synthesis. The review highlights new support technologies such as the use of well-established polysaccharides in novel ways, the use of magnetic particles, DNA, renewable materials and hybrid organic-inorganic supports. The review also addresses how immobilization is being integrated into developing biocatalytic technology, for example in flow biocatalysis, the use of 3D printing and multi-enzymatic cascade reactions.
Keywords: 3D-printing; biocatalysis; enzyme; flow processes; immobilization; support technologies.