In this minireview, the application of enzymes for the modification of fats and oils is covered with special emphasis on lipase-catalyzed synthesis of structured triglycerides. Furthermore, protein engineering methods to alter the fatty acid chain-length or the trans-fatty acid selectivity of lipase A from Candida antarctica and an enzymatic two-step method to remove the contaminant 3-monochloro-1,2-propane diol are presented. Also the combination of several enzymes enables cascade reactions to obtain products such as ω-hydroxycarboxylic acids useful for oleochemistry and recently published achievements to produce valuable compounds by metabolic engineering of microorganisms as exemplified for PUFA or fatty acid esters starting from sugars as renewable resources are covered. Special emphasis is given on achievements made in the authors group.
This review highlights developments in the field of enzymatic lipid modification covering the use of commercial enzymes, the design of lipases via protein engineering as well as recently established enzyme cascade reactions and examples for metabolic engineering to yield fatty acids and their derivatives.