Prof. Zvjezdana Findrik Blažević

Prof. Zvjezdana Findrik Blažević

(Full Professor)

University of Zagreb
Faculty of Chemical Engineering and Technology
Department of Reaction Engineering and Catalysis
Savska cesta 16
10 000 Zagreb

Dr. Zvjezdana Findrik Blažević is the first supervisor of DC 9. She also acts as Dissemination and Exploitation Manager (WP5).

Since 2018 Dr Findrik Blažević is a Full professor at the Faculty of Chemical Engineering and Technology, University of Zagreb where she teaches courses in chemical and biochemical engineering. She completed her PhD in 2006 at the same institution in the group of Prof. Đurđa Vasić-Rački working in the field of applied biocatalysis, i.e., development and optimization of enzymatic reactions (cascades included) by the aid of kinetic modelling approach. Her research interests are focused on the optimization of the single and multi-enzyme reaction systems via application of enzyme reaction engineering or statistical and stochastic methods. She was awarded with the Award of the Academy of Engineering –to young scientist, National Science Award – Annual Award for junior researchers in Biotechnical sciences, Award of the Society of University Teachers, Scholars and other Scientist in Zagreb. She is a principal investigator in two current Horizon 2020 projects (RadicalZ and C-C Top), and involved in several national projects.


Key expertise

Our research exploits the possibilities of reaction engineering and chemical engineering as tools in development of unstudied enzymes and new reactions whose products are of interest for the industry.
One of the main areas of interests are kinetic characterization of enzymes, evaluation of enzyme stability in the process, and application of this knowledge in reaction development and prediction via modeling. This is followed by reaction optimization by optimization of the reaction conditions, and choosing the best reactor set up for the selected biotransformation.
Our research laboratories are equipped with the necessary equipment and know-how for this kind of research including S1-safety lab, crucial equipment for enzyme production and purification (shakers for cultivation, Äkta purifier, lyophilizer, electrophoresis etc.), analysis of samples (HPLC DAD, HPLC UV, GC FID, GC MS, access to LC MS and NMR), biotransformations (various types of reactors including EMR, microreactors, batch reactors of different sizes, rotating bed reactor).


Hosting Institution

Faculty of Chemical Engineering and Technology is a research-oriented institution with more than hundred-year tradition in Chemical Engineering. We perform teaching, scientific research, professional and consulting activities in chemical engineering, chemistry, and related fields. Teaching and education are based on modern, problem-oriented methods and provide students with analytical methodology in solving problems, but always keeping in mind the synthetic approach. Students of the Faculty obtain contemporary knowledge of research, development and design of new, sustainable chemical industrial processes as well as on the improvement of existing ones. This is done to ensure high quality, reliable and safe production that takes into account criteria of the economy, efficiency and environmental protection. The priority topics of research involve environmental protection and management, development of advanced materials and sustainable technologies, alternative and renewable energy sources, development of new pharmaceuticals, industrial biotransformations and other related subjects. The Faculty has developed valuable international cooperation with various scientific institutions in the world, either directly or through inter-university cooperation.




Relevant Publications

1. Česnik Katulić, M., Sudar, M., Hernández, K., Charnock, S., Vasić-Rački, Đ., Clapés, P., Findrik Blažević, Z. Cascade synthesis of L-homoserine catalysed by lyophilized whole cells containing transaminase and aldolase activity: The mathematical modeling approach, Ind. Eng. Chem. Res., 60, 2021, 13846-13858.

2. Findrik Blažević, Z., Milčić, N, Sudar, M., Majerić Elenkov, M. Halohydrin dehalogenases and their potential in industrial application – a viewpoint of enzyme reaction engineering, Adv. Synth. Catal. 363 (2), 2021, 388-410.

3. Česnik, M., Sudar, M., Roldan, R., Hernandez, K., Parella, T., Clapés, P., Charnock, S., Vasić- Rački, Đ., Findrik Blažević, Z. Model-based optimization of the enzymatic aldol addition of propanal to formaldehyde; a first step towards enzymatic synthesis of 3- hydroxybutyric acid, Chem. Eng. Res. Des. 150, 2019, 140-152.