Aarhus Universitets segl


The Industrial Biotech Section Seminars are a series of monthly lectures from internal researchers covering all aspects of research related to industrial biotechnology.

For more information, contact Thea Jess Plesner, tjp@bce.au.dk

Industrial Biotechnology Seminar Lectures

Friday 3 May 2024, at 12.30

Lecture by: Professor Dr.-Ing. habil. Selin Kara, Department of Biological and Chemical Engineering, Aarhus University, Denmark

Title: "Process intensification for enzymatic decarboxylations: Transitioning from lab to industrial scales”

Place: Gustav Wieds Vej 10C, 8000 Aarhus C, Building 3130, Room 303

The application of nature’s catalysts, “enzymes,” for the synthesis of chemicals is a crucial emerging field of industrial biotechnology to meet the current and future needs of our society for sustainable manufacturing of chemicals. Nature uses an elegant and efficient synthetic strategy: Coupling enzymes in multi-step pathways without intermediate isolation and purification steps with precise spatial control of catalysis. Inspired by nature, the design of multi-step biotransformations has been attracting significant attention within the biocatalysis community. The talk will introduce enzymatic decarboxylation reactions (in cascading systems), exploring the use of non-conventional media, enzyme immobilization, and different operational modes for enhancing the volumetric productivity of these biocatalytic applications.

Friday 05 April 2024, at 12.30 - 13.30

Lecture by: Maria Florencia Bambace & Herald Wilson Ambrose

Title: "Reuterin-based biological treatment to mitigate methane emissions from pig slurry storage”

Place: Gustav Wieds Vej 10C, 8000 Aarhus C, Building 3130, Room 303.

Methane (CH4) accounts for more than 90% of farmgate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in pig farming, with 80% being produced during manure management. In intensive pig production, slurry is stored in manure pits under the barn floor for short term storage (1 to 6 weeks) and in outside storage tanks for longer storage periods. During this time, CH4 is emitted as a result of microbial degradation of organic substrates present in the pig feces, combined with the anaerobic conditions developed under the slurry surface, which promote the activity of methanogens. Acidification is considered a benchmark technology for mitigating CH4 emissions from stored slurry. However, there are several associated drawbacks such as safety issues in application, soil sensitivity to increased sulphur loads during land application, and inhibitory effects on biogas production. Other chemical additives raise further environmental concerns; hence the need for a biological alternative is highly sought for CH4 mitigation in slurry storage.  

Biological treatments studied thus far, utilizing microbial or enzymatic additives have shown little to insignificant potential for CH4 mitigation in pig and cattle slurry storages. In this seminar talk, we will present and discuss the results of a successful biological treatment aimed at inhibiting methanogenic activity in slurry storages, conducted on a laboratory scale headspace emission setup. The biological additive involves the use of Limosilactobacillus reuteri, which in the presence of glycerol produces reuterin, a broad-spectrum antimicrobial agent. We assessed the impact of endogenously produced reuterin on CH4 emissions from pig slurry by initially introducing both L. reuteri and glycerol into the slurry, which was then stored for a period of 26 to 30 days, during which CH4 emissions were measured. We also optimized the dosage combination of L. reuteri and glycerol. Our results showed that endogenously produced reuterin reduced CH4 emissions by 74-90% compared to untreated slurry. The environmental and biological aspect of our study will be further discussed, highlighting this novel approach as a promising alternative to H2SO4 or chemical surfactant treatments for reducing methanogenic activity in pig slurry storages.  

Maria Florencia Bambace

Herald Wilson Ambrose

Wednesday 4 May 2022, at 12.15

Lecture by: Nele Van Dessel,  CEO from Ernest Pharmaceuticals (USA)

Title: "The use of Salmonella bacteria to treat cancer”

Place: Zoom, https://aarhusuniversity.zoom.us/j/62375855091

The microbial biotechnology course will host an online guest lecture on the use of Salmonella bacteria to treat cancer.

The guest speaker is Nele Van Dessel,  CEO from Ernest Pharmaceuticals (USA), a small startup company, trying to bring this new and intriguing microbial biotechnology to the market.