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Pierre MONSANProfesseur émérite à l'INSA et directeur de TWB

Professor CE2, Senior IUF
Biocatalysis – Enzyme Catalysis and Molecular Engineering
+33 (0) 561 559 415
INSA de Toulouse
135 avenue de Rangueil
31077 Toulouse cedex 4 - FRANCE




Professor Pierre MONSAN graduated in 1969 from the National Institute of Applied Sciences (INSA, Department of Biochemical Engineering) of Toulouse, France. From 1969 to 1981, he took up a career at INSA of Toulouse as a Research Scientist, rewarded by a Doctor-Engineer Thesis (1971) and a Ph.D. Thesis at the University of Toulouse (1977). From 1981, Pierre Monsan was promoted as a full Professor at INSA Toulouse, in charge of the Laboratory of Enzyme Catalysis. From 1999 to 2002, he was Head of the Department of Biochemical Engineering of INSA, which graduates 50 students per year and hosts a Technology Transfer Center and a Scientific Park. He is now in charge of the Biocatalysis Group of the Laboratory of BioSystems and Chemical Engineering of INSA. He was elected on July 2003 at the French University Institute and re-elected in 2008. Pierre Monsan is also Professor at the “Ecole des Mines-Paris Tech” since 1993 (Biotechnology Department).
In 1984, Pierre Monsan was involved, as a co-founder, in the start-up of BioEurope, devoted to research & development in Biocatalysis. Since October 1992, BioEurope has merged with the French group Solabia, and is now the R&D division of this group, focusing on the production and marketing of innovative ingredients for cosmetic and fermentation application ($20 M turn-over). He is also co-founder of Biotrade (waste water treatment, Toulouse, France) in 1996 and of Génibio (food complements, Saint-Girons, France) in 1998. He was involved in the transfer of LibraGen in Toulouse (2004). He acts as a consultant and scientific advisor for several Pharmaceutical and Food companies. He is Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the French Institute for Brewing and Malting. He is the French representative at the Board of the European Federation of Biotechnology and of the International Carbohydrate Society.
Pierre Monsan is a Founding-Member of the French Academy of Technologies (2000). He received the CHAPTAL 2000 Award for Chemical Arts from the French Society for the Promotion of Industry. He is chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Midi-Pyrénées Region (Research budget: 30M€ per year)




Pierre Monsan’s research work is mainly focused on the discovery of new enzymes by functional genomics and the design of performance enzymes by rational and combinatorial molecular engineering. His main present interest is on the molecular characterisation of structure/activity relationships at the level of glucansucrases (dextran-, alternan- and amylosucrases) and their application to controlled carbohydrate synthesis (glucan polysaccharides, glucooligosaccharides, glucoconjugates) and of lipases (resolution of racemic mixtures and transesterification reactions). He has set at INSA in 2002 a HTS-platform for the molecular engineering of enzymes (ICEO).



At INSA Toulouse, Pierre Monsan teaches Structural Biochemistry (PO ICBE, 2nd Year).
At Ecole des Mines- Paris Tech he teaches Industrial Biotechnology.



Pierre Monsan is the author of over 200 peer-reviewed scientific articles, 2 books and 57 patents.
Main publications:
1. Etude du mécanisme d’établissement des liaisons glutaraldéhyde-protéines Monsan P., Puzo G., Mazarguil H. Biochimie. 57 (1975), 1281-1292
2. Applications of immobilized invertase to continuous hydrolysis of concentrated sucrose solutions Monsan P., Combes D. Biotechnol. Bioeng.. 26 (1984), 347-351
3. Production and use of glucosyltransferases from Leuconostoc mesenteroides NRRL B-1299 for the synthesis of oligosaccharides containing a-1,2 linkages Remaud-Siméon M., Lopez-Munguia A., Pelenc V., Paul F., Monsan P. Applied Biochem. Biotech.. 44 (1994), 101-117
4. Sequence analysis of the gene encoding amylosucrase from Neisseria polysaccharea and characterization of the recombinant enzyme Potocki de Montalk G., Remaud-Siméon M., Willemot R.M., Planchot V., Monsan P. J ; Bacteriol.. 181 (1999), 375-381
5. Understanding the polymerisation mechanism of glycoside-hydrolase of family 70 glucansucrases
Moulis C., Joucla G., Harrison D., Fabre E., Potocki-Véronèse G., Monsan P., Remaud-Siméon M.
J. Biol. Chem.. 281 (2006), 31254-31267
6. Guieysse D., Cortés J., Puech-Guenot S., Barbe S., Lafaquière V., Monsan P., Siméon T., André I., Remaud-Siméon M. (2008)
A structure-controlled lipase enantioselectivity investigated by a path planning approach
ChemBioChem, 9 (2008) 1308-1317.
7. Design of -transglucosidases of controlled specificities for programmed chemo-enzymatic synthesis of antigenic oligosaccharides
Champion E., André I., Moulis C., Boutet J., Descroix K., Morel S., Monsan P., Mulard L., Remaud-Siméon M.
J. Amer. Chem. Soc., 131 (2009) 7379-7389.
8. Functional metagenomics to mine the human gut microbiome for dietary fiber catabolic enzymes
Tasse L., Bercovici J., Pizzut-Serin S., Robe P., Tap J., Klopp C., Cantarel B.L., Coutinho P.M., Henrissat B., Leclerc M., Doré J., Monsan P., Remaud-Siméon M., Potocki-Véronèse G.
Genome Res., 20 (2010) 1605-1612