Prof. Dr. Vlada B. Urlacher

Research focus

Our research focuses on the biochemical characterization of P450 enzymes and the elucidation of molecular mechanisms of their activity and selectivity. So far, functions of only a small fraction of P450 genes present in plants have been defined by establishing enzyme specificity at a biochemical level. Therefore, one of the aims of our project is to express selected plant P450 monooxygenases in recombinant hosts and to investigate their substrate specificities in vitro. Further, the differences in substrate spectra of homologous P450s from different plants and their cross-activities will be investigated.

The ten most important publications

  1. Schulz S, Girhard M, Gaßmeyer SK, Jäger VD, Schwarze D, Vogel A, Urlacher VB (2015) Selective Enzymatic Synthesis of the Grapefruit Flavor (+)-Nootkatone. ChemCatChem 7(4):601-604.
  2. Ricklefs E, Girhard M, Koschorreck K, Smit MS, Urlacher VB (2015) Two-Step One-Pot Synthesis of Pinoresinol from Eugenol in an Enzymatic Cascade. ChemCatChem 7(12):1857-1864.
  3. Le-Huu P, Heidt T, Claasen B, Laschat S, Urlacher VB (2015) Chemo-, Regio-, and Stereoselective Oxidation of the Monocyclic Diterpenoid β-Cembrenediol by P450 BM3. ACS Catalysis 5(3):1772-1780.
  4. Bakkes PJ, Biemann S, Bokel A, Eickholt M, Girhard M, Urlacher VB (2015) Design and improvement of artificial redox modules by molecular fusion of flavodoxin and flavodoxin reductase from Escherichia coli. Scientific reports 5:12158.
  5. von Bühler CJ, Urlacher VB (2014) A novel P450-based biocatalyst for the selective production of chiral 2-alkanols. Chem Commun (Camb) 50(31):4089-4091.
  6. Gunne M, Höppner A, Hagedoorn PL, Urlacher VB (2014) Structural and redox properties of the small laccase Ssl1 from Streptomyces sviceus. FEBS J 281(18):4307-4318.
  7. Gunne M, Urlacher VB (2012) Characterization of the alkaline laccase Ssl1 from Streptomyces sviceus with unusual properties discovered by genome mining. PloS one 7(12):e52360.
  8. Weber E, Seifert A, Antonovici M, Geinitz C, Pleiss J, Urlacher VB (2011) Screening of a minimal enriched P450 BM3 mutant library for hydroxylation of cyclic and acyclic alkanes. Chem Commun (Camb) 47(3):944-946.
  9. Seifert A, Vomund S, Grohmann K, Kriening S, Urlacher VB, Laschat S, Pleiss J (2009) Rational design of a minimal and highly enriched CYP102A1 mutant library with improved regio-, stereo- and chemoselectivity. Chembiochem 10(5):853-861.
  10. Girhard M, Machida K, Itoh M, Schmid RD, Arisawa A, Urlacher VB (2009) Regioselective biooxidation of (+)-valencene by recombinant E. coli expressing CYP109B1 from Bacillus subtilis in a two-liquid-phase system. Microb Cell Fact 8:36.
Prof. Dr. Vlada Urlacher
CEPLAS Vlada Urlacher


 +49 211 81-13889

Institute of Biochemistry II
Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf

Universitätsstraße 1

40225 Düsseldorf

Heinrich Heine University
University of Cologne
Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research
Forschungszentrum Jülich