Industrial Uses of Bacteria

19th May 2010

Organised by the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining.

This one day conference aims to give an overview of the industrial uses of bacteria and other micro-organisms in commercial applications relating to materials and environmental technologies, and seeks to bring together the different industrial biotechnology communities, in order to stimulate discussion, transfer technology, and investigate the wider potential uses of bacteria.

Bacteria, and other microbes such as microalgae and fungi, have historically been exploited in a number of human activities, but more recently industrial biotechnology has lead to a breakthrough in larger scale applications such as:

•    materials processing
•    energy production
•    waste processing and bioremediation
•    corrosion resistance
•    production of drugs
•    manufacture of polymers

These diverse applications will be explored, as well as methods of selecting and modifying bacteria, and increasing the efficiency of their use.

As we stress in our recently published strategic plan, Green and White biotechnologies are going to be an increasingly important part of the manufacturing landscape. Looking to biological systems that have been finely tuned by evolution to solve problems, rather than starting from scratch every time, might seem an obvious thing to do. It does however, in many cases, require the bringing together of particular niche expertise.” Professor Douglas Kell, Chief Executive, Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council.

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Who should attend

This conference should appeal to any scientist or engineer wishing to gain a greater knowledge of the diverse uses of bacteria industrially.



This event is approved by the Institute for 6 hours of professional

IOM3 members can access their personal online CPD record by logging in
and clicking on the My Profile link, top right. 

For the timetable of the conference and the presentation abstracts please download the relevant links from the bottom of this page.

09.30 Chairman’s Welcome and Overview: Professor
Chris J. Hewitt
, Professor of Biological Engineering, Loughborough

Session 1
•    Microbial Biofuels in Perspective: Professor Martin Tangney, Director, Biofuel Research Centre, Edinburgh Napier University
•    Learning from Purple Photosynthetic Bacteria how to Convert Solar Energy into Fuels: Professor Richard Cogdell, Glasgow Biomedical Research Centre, University of Glasgow
•    Farming Marine Microalgae: the Next Agricultural Revolution: Professor Grant Burgess, Professor of Marine Biotechnology, Newcastle University

Session 2
•    Biohydrogen Production and Precious Metal Recovery for Fuel Cells: Dr Mark Redwood, Unit of Functional Bionanomaterials, School of Biosciences, University of Birmingham
•    Microbially Enhanced Oil Recovery: Professor Adel Sharif, Director, Centre for Osmosis Research & Applications, University of Surrey
•    Expanded Bed Technology for High-rate Bioprocesses: Dr Mike Dempsey, School of Biology, Chemistry and Health Sciences, Manchester Metropolitan University

Session 3
•    Land Bioremediation and Bionanotechnology: Dr Russell Thomas, Parsons Brinckerhoff and Professor Jon Lloyd, School of Earth, Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, University of Manchester
•    Industrial Production of Enzymes for Bioinnovation: Dr Stuart Stocks, Novozymes
•    Selection and Testing of New Marine Bacteria for Green and White Biotechnology Applications: Dr Robert Speight, Ingenza Ltd (to be confirmed)

Session 4
•    Production of Biodegradable Polymers (Polyhydroxyalkanoates): Dr Ipsita Roy, School of Life Sciences, University of Westminster
•    Good bugs, Bad bugs; Sol-gel Encapsulated Bacteria in Anti-Fouling and Anti-Corrosion Coatings: Professor Robert Akid, Head of Structural Materials and Integrity Research Centre, Sheffield Hallam University

16.40  Conference Close


Conference Chair

Professor Chris J. Hewitt, Professor of Biological Engineering, Loughborough University, Leicestershire, LE11 3TU

[img_assist|nid=28819|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=87|height=128]Chris graduated with a first class honours degree in Microbiology from Royal Holloway College, University of London in 1990, and then went on to University of Birmingham to study for his PhD in Chemical Engineering. Chris is now busy developing the 'Centre for Biological Engineering', of which he is co-founder, at Loughborough that seeks to translate the latest bioscience discoveries into large quantities of safe economic pharmaceutical therapies. This is achieved by studying the interaction of the cell with the process engineering environment using such non-invasive techniques as flow cytometry, cell sorting and image analysis the motivation being process understanding, improvement and optimisation for informed scale-up/out. This subject comfortably spans the life science engineering interface and is key to the delivery of effective cell based therapies. Chris is also Chairman of the Biochemical Engineering Subject Group of the Institution of Chemical Engineers and Member of Council of the Society for General Microbiology.


Cost and Online Registration

Conference cost: £260 + VAT

Concessions are available to:

Professional Members of IOM3: £190.00 + VAT
Affiliate Member of IOM3 or supporting organisation: £225.00 + VAT
Student/Unemployed member: £80.00 + VAT
Student/Unemployed non-member: £100.00+ VAT

Early booking is recommended for this event, as delegate places are
limited, and we envisage a large take up of places due to the
possibility of highly valuable direct contact with the expert speakers
in this field. 

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Venue and booking

Event Location

Event Location: 
1 Carlton House Terrace
United Kingdom
Contact details: 

Dawn Bonfield
00 44 1438 821740