Biofunctionalized materials and (glyco) biotechnology


What are

Polymers and biology are not necessarily opposites!


What is glyco-biotechnology?

Sugars are not only sweet, they also make materials smart!


Bioprocess development

From 1 mL to 100 L -
we develop your bioprocess!


3D printing technologies for medical applications

We develop biocompatible and biomimetic materials.

Who are we?

Two worlds, one team!

Your contact persons

What are bio-functionalized materials?

Biofunctionalized materials are materials that are active or interact with biological units due to biomolecules or their physicochemical properties.

Why imitate nature when you can use it?

Current research

  • Integration of active biomolecules in thermoplastics
  • biofunctionalized surfaces
  • biocatalytic plastic degradation
  • Agricultural residues for new materials

Utilized biomolecules

  • (antimicrobial) peptides
  • Glycans, oligo- and polysaccharides
  • (technical) proteins / enzymes

Possible applications

  • antimicrobial surfaces
  • biosensors
  • biocatalyzed active surfaces and plastic parts
  • enzymatic degradation of plastics
  • biological anti-fouling

Markets and industries


  • life science
  • innovative plastics
  • coatings

Ways of


  • contract research
  • scientific cooperation
  • development services

What is Glycobiotechnology?

Sugars, so-called glycans, are the most diverse class of biomolecules. In addition to sweetening food, they are a supporting substance in plants or insects and fulfill far-reaching biological functions. Each of our cells is surrounded by a dense sugar coat, which is responsible for protecting the cell and enabling communication between two cells. Pathogens take advantage of this and bind to our cells via sugar. Damaged cells show altered sugar structures.

We research the sugars that are responsible for the exchange of information between cells and their environment or that confer important properties. We incorporate these infinite functions into new materials.

Current research

  • efficient syntheses of glycomonomers
  • synthesis strategies for glycopolymers
  • extraction of glycans
  • sugar-based patho-blockers
  • glycan assays and analysis

Possible applications

  • biocompatible, sliding surfaces
  • superhydrophilic surfaces
  • bio-inspired lubricants
  • targeting
  • biosensors
  • medical materials

Markets and industries


  • medical technology
  • biomedicine
  • cosmetics
  • bioanalysis
  • innovative plastics

Ways of

  • contract research
  • research cooperation
  • development services

Who are we?

We combine our know-how in organic synthesis and polymer chemistry with glycobiology and biotechnology.

materials | Methods



  • plasma activation
    (low pressure and atmospheric pressure)
  • biofunctional polymers on surfaces
  • immobilization of biomolecules
  • coating of (bio) sensors




  • (bio) catalyzed reactions
  • synthesis of functional monomers and small molecules
  • controlled and free radical polymerization for the production of
    • (glyco) polymers
    • block copolymers
    • polymer particles
    • micro / nano gels
    • core-shell particles
    • other morphologies on request
  • sugar chemistry
    • synthesis of glycomonomers and polymers
    • selective modification of sugars
  • microwave synthesis reactor
  • development of synthesis strategies


  • preparative HPLC
  • column chromatography
  • freeze drying
    (also for organic solvents)


  • thin layer chromatography (TLC)
  • spectroscopic methods of organic chemistry (NMR, IR, UV / Vis, fluorescence etc.)
  • response tracking (In situ FTIR spectroscopy)
  • mass spectrometry (LC-MS)
  • analytical (U) HPLC with mass detection (ESI)
  • highly sensitive protein quantification
    by means of LC-MS / MS (also on surfaces)
  • Zeta potential and size determination (Dynamic light scattering)
  • mechanical and dimensional analysis of hair and fibers

(Glyco) biotechnology | Methods



  • protein modification and engineering
  • protein purification and protein chemical analysis
  • chemo-enzymatic glycan modification
  • structure-function analysis of polymers
  • production of Recombinant Proteins
  • fermentation (small scale up to 100 L)
  • downstream processing (plate separation, homogenization, filtration, chromatography, freeze drying)


  • solid phase assays (ELISA, ELLA)
  • activity tests / kinetics
  • glycosylation detection / sugar analysis
  • isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC)
  • surface plasmon resonance spectroscopy (SPR)


  • biofilm examinations
  • test for antimicrobial effectiveness
  • identification of microorganisms (PCR)
  • growth kinetics
  • homologous recombination
  • metabolic engineering and strain development

Projects and publications

Here you will find the latest press releases, selected research projects and publications.


Enzymes successfully embedded in plastics

Press release from Jun 1, 2021


sugar molecules
protect cell cultures

Press release from May 17, 2019


Contact lenses
with medicine and sugar

Press release from April 17, 2019


Plastics with
biological properties

Press release from July 9, 2018


An innovative high-
performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

Press release from January 20, 2017


Novel biomaterials from proteins

Press release from July 22, 2016



EFRE-Projekt |
Printed Organic
Functionalities PRIOR

New production technologies for medical applications with the help of printed organic electronics


Ruben R. Rosencrantz

Contact Press / Media

Dr. Ruben R. Rosencrantz

Head of Department | Biofunctionalized Materials and (Glyco)Biotechnology

Fraunhofer IAP
Geiselbergstraße 69
14476 Potsdam

Phone +49 331 568-3203

Maren Wandrey

Contact Press / Media

Dr. Maren Wandrey

Contact Person | Bioprocess Development

Fraunhofer IAP
Geiselbergstraße 69
14476 Potsdam-Golm

Phone +49 331 568-1330

Wolfdietrich Meyer

Contact Press / Media

Dr. Wolfdietrich Meyer

Contact Person | 3D Printing

Fraunhofer-Institut für Angewandte Polymerforschung IAP
Geiselbergstr. 69
14476 Potsdam

Phone +49 331 568-1442