Stabilizing enzymes within polymersomes by co-encapsulation of trehalose

Dinu, Maria Valentina and Dinu, Ionel Adrian and Saxer, Sina Simone and Meier, Wolfgang P. and Pieles, Uwe and Bruns, Nico (2021) Stabilizing enzymes within polymersomes by co-encapsulation of trehalose. Biomacromolecules, 22 (1). pp. 134-145. ISSN 1525-7797 (

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Enzymes are essential biocatalysts and very attractive as therapeutics. However, their functionality is strictly related to their stability, which is significantly affected by the environmental changes occurring during their usage or long-term storage. Therefore, maintaining the activity of enzymes is essential when they are exposed to high temperature during usage or when they are stored for extended periods of time. Here, we stabilize and protect enzymes by coencapsulating them with trehalose into polymersomes. The anhydrobiotic disaccharide preserved up to about 81% of the enzyme's original activity when laccase/trehalose-loaded nanoreactors were kept desiccated for 2 months at room temperature and 75% of its activity when heated at 50 °C for 3 weeks. Moreover, the applicability of laccase/trehalose-loaded nanoreactors as catalysts for bleaching of the textile dyes orange G, toluidine blue O, and indigo was proven. Our results demonstrate the advantages of coencapsulating trehalose within polymersomes to stabilize enzymes in dehydrated state for extended periods of time, preserving their activity even when heated to elevated temperature.