1993 …2019
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Personal profile


Broadly my research brings together biology and engineering to address future manufacturing needs.

I am interested in discovering and designing enzymes for specific and fast reactions as isolated biocatalysts. In addition, I'm researching the metabolic and systems biology of cells in culture - examining productivity and underlying reasons behind heterogeneity in response and how this can be modified - using our recently installed high throughput culture and single cell analysis facility.


I use biocatalysts at different scales; the simplest scale being the isolated enzyme to the most complex such as a self-replicating cell. Each approach has their benefits and disadvantages. The cheapest and easiest to implement is an isolated biocatalysts but these have limited capacity for product formation and processing. At the other extreme, whole cells have complex biochemical pathways to consider and require approaches like metabolic engineering or synthetic biology to streamline and improve production of selected metabolites.

Research interests

Enzyme discovery and design; metabolic engineering of yeast and bacteria; systems biology of cultured cells.


Application areas: biocatalysis; bioprocessing; manufacturing; energy

Monash teaching commitment

  • CHE4180 Research project
  • CHE4171 Biochemical engineering
  • CHE5882 Biomass and biorefineries

Supervision interests

Final year (CHE4180) students; PhD students interested in these research areas are welcome to apply


  • Enzymes
  • biocatalysis
  • systems biology
  • metabolic engineering
  • synthetic biology

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Projects 2018 2019

Research Output 1993 2018

Functional assessment of plant and microalgal lipid pathway genes in yeast to enhance microbial industrial oil production

Peng, H., Moghaddam, L., Brinin, A., Williams, B., Mundree, S. & Haritos, V. S. 1 Mar 2018 In : Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry. 65, 2, p. 138-144 7 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Single cell assessment of yeast metabolic engineering for enhanced lipid production using Raman and AFM-IR imaging

Kochan, K., Peng, H., Wood, B. R. & Haritos, V. S. 10 Apr 2018 In : Biotechnology for Biofuels. 11, 1, 15 p., 106

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Open Access

Insights into substrate binding of ferulic acid esterases by arabinose and methyl hydroxycinnamate esters and molecular docking

Hunt, C. J., Antonopoulou, I., Tanksale, A., Rova, U., Christakopoulos , P. & Haritos, V. S. 11 Dec 2017 In : Scientific Reports. 7, 11 p., 17315

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Open Access

Microwave assisted conversion of microcrystalline cellulose into value added chemicals using dilute acid test

Ching, T. W., Haritos, V. & Tanksale, A. 10 Feb 2017 In : Carbohydrate Polymers. 157, p. 1794-1800 7 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Biochemical characterization of a halotolerant feruloyl esterase from Actinomyces spp.: refolding and activity following thermal deactivation

Hunt, C. J., Tanksale, A. & Haritos, V. 2016 In : Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology. 100, 4, p. 1777 - 1787 11 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review