The microorganisms that evolved at low temperatures express cold-adapted enzymes endowed with unique catalytic properties in comparison to their mesophilic homologues, i.e., higher catalytic efficiency, improved flexibility, and lower thermal stability. Cold environments are therefore an attractive research area for the discovery of enzymes to be used for investigational and industrial applications in which such properties are desirable. In this work, we will review the literature on cold-adapted enzymes specifically focusing on those discovered in the bioprospecting of polar marine environments, so far largely neglected because of their limited accessibility. We will discuss their existing or proposed biotechnological applications within the framework of the more general applications of cold-adapted enzymes.
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