Enzymatic synthesis of sugar fatty acid esters in organic solvents is a well-described procedure to synthesize glycolipids. This study aims at replacing these solvents with deep eutectic solvents (DES), a group of solvents that gained more and more interest during the last years, since they can be easily produced from non-toxic resources. Enzymatic glycolipid synthesis in deep eutectic solvents was investigated, employing Candida antarctica lipase B (Novozyme 435) in various deep eutectic solvents.
A successful lipase-catalyzed synthesis of glucose fatty acid esters gave proof of this concept, while using the two deep eutectic solvents consisting of choline chloride and urea (CC : U) and choline chloride and glucose (CC : Glc). Additionally the DES consisting of choline chloride and glucose was observed to act as solvent and substrate for the synthesis at the same time.