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about accelerase from genencor

The History of Accellerase®

Accellerase® had led the development of the cellulosic industry for more than twenty-five years, first as part of Genencor and now within DuPont Industrial Biosciences. Our commitment to innovation has resulted in an unrivaled track record of industry “firsts” in enzymes and in ethanol. We were the first biotech company to develop and deliver a commercially viable microbial expression system for enzymes. We launched the first commercially viable enzyme for cellulosic ethanol. We pioneered the use of hemi-cellulases.

Accellerase® leverages the expertise of more than 2,500 researchers, engineers and innovators in DuPont Industrial Biosciences to drive the future of this industry. Our colleagues and collaborations touch every step of the value chain, which helps Accellerase® stay a step ahead of trends in the industry. 

Cellulase at our Core

Our name comes from our original mission: to accelerate the hydrolysis of cellulase. When we began biomass enzyme development at Genencor, cellulase enzymes were used in laundry detergent to remove grass stains. They were engineered to be weak, to avoid ruining the clothes. Our scientists started to construct stronger cellulase cocktails that could be used break down biomass and produce sustainable fuel.

When our team was the sole winner of an NREL contract to develop enzymes for biomass conversion, the group started to field research requests for samples. The scientists needed a name for their new, powerful cellulase. Never able to resist a pun, the team settled on a combination of the words “accelerate” and “cellulase” and we became  A-C-C-E-L-L-E-R-A-S-E instead of “Accelerase.”


With integrated solutions for the production of fuel from biomass, DuPont is working to accelerate the commercialization of cellulosic ethanol in markets around the world. Learn more about our range of solutions across the biofuels value chain.