Tapping the unused potential of photosynthesis

Tapping the unused potential of photosynthesis

Phys.org reports that scientists from the University of Southampton have reengineered the fundamental process of photosynthesis to power useful chemical reactions that could be used to produce biofuels, pharmaceuticals and fine chemicals. Photosynthesis in plants and algae consists of two reactions…

Israeli algal research team turns up the hydrogen

Israeli algal research team turns up the hydrogen

Judy Siegel-Itzkovich writes in the Jerusalem Post that Dr. Iftach Yacoby and his research team at Tel Aviv University, in Israel, have genetically altered microalgae to increase its efficiency of producing hydrogen to five times its natural ability. “Hydrogen is an energy source with huge advantages,” says Dr. Yacoby…

“Porous Substrate Bioreactor” developed at U. of Cologne

“Porous Substrate Bioreactor” developed at U. of Cologne

Gaynor Selby writes in foodingredientsfirst.com that a team of scientists and researchers at the University of Cologne believe they have made a breakthrough that could lead to cultivating algae on a commercial scale in a much cheaper way than is currently possible. Head of botany and algae specialist professor…

Native Alberta algae to detox tailings ponds

Native Alberta algae to detox tailings ponds

Erin Guiltenane reports that a research project underway at the University of Calgary, in Alberta, Canada, aims to clean up oil sands tailings ponds by using native algae already found in them to do the job. Oil sands mining produces pools of wastewater that are difficult…

Chinese/Australian microalgae development center

Chinese/Australian microalgae development center

Global Chinese agribusiness Shandong Tianjiu Industrial Group (Tianjiu) has entered into a three-year $1 million (AUS) joint research agreement with South Australia’s Flinders University to expand a world-class microalgae and related advanced marine bioproduct development center. The research collaboration will focus on…

Developing algae to target wastewater contaminants

Developing algae to target wastewater contaminants

Sean Myers reports that University of Calgary researchers have found a way to program algae with bacterial genes to target unwanted chemicals and pharmaceuticals that end up in wastewater. Lee Jackson, scientific director of the Advancing Canadian Wastewater Assets (ACWA) research facility…

UT professor using “tiny greenhouses” to research algae

UT professor using “tiny greenhouses” to research algae

Professor David Sinton of the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering has been awarded a 2015 E.W.R. Steacie Memorial Fellowship from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC). The award will support Sinton’s research into optimizing the growth…

Qatar algae research project moves to Phase 2

Qatar algae research project moves to Phase 2

Joey Aguilar writes for the Gulf-Times that a Qatar University project to develop sustainable technologies from algae has entered the second phase. The initiative, led by project manager Hareb al-Jabri, started in 2009 with funding from Qatar Airways and Qatar Science and Technology Park…

New spirulina and cancer study

New spirulina and cancer study

Alex Strauss writes in Surviving Mesothelioma about a new study on spirulina’s effects on five major types of cancer. Spirulina — a cyanobacterium, or blue-green algae, that is cultivated as a dietary supplement and as a whole food — is rich in plant proteins and contains other vitamins and minerals…

Cyanobacteria efficient at “harvesting” light

Cyanobacteria efficient at “harvesting” light

Cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, have an ingenious system to prepare themselves for the coming daylight when it is dark by setting up a large “antenna.” This antenna helps them capture light energy in an efficient way, while also providing protection against damage to the photosynthesis mechanism of the…

Coal dust + algae = Coalgae

Coal dust + algae = Coalgae

Heather Dugmore writes for BDlive that a new fuel, Coalgae – produced from a combination of waste coal dust and algae – could save South Africa up to 40% of its crude oil imports. Professor Ben Zeelie and his team at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) combined coal dust with algae to form…

Magnetic nanoparticle harvests microalgae

Magnetic nanoparticle harvests microalgae

Chen Wei-han of the Taipei Times reports that a National Taiwan University (NTU) research team has announced the formulation of a synthetic nanoparticle that is able to extract oil from algae and turn it into biodiesel. The team, led by NTU chemistry professor Chia-wen Wu, synthesized a magnetic nanoparticle for…

AlgaeTec cultivation center opens in Munich

AlgaeTec cultivation center opens in Munich

The Technical University of Munich (TUM) has built a one-of-a-kind technical facility for algae cultivation at the Ludwig Bölkow Campus in Ottobrunn, to the south of Munich, Germany, in cooperation with Airbus Group. Efficient processes for producing biokerosene and chemical products from algae will be developed there…

Algal biofuel production center launched in India

Algal biofuel production center launched in India

TheHindu.com reports that the Department of Microbiology of Bharathidasan University (BU), in Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu, India, has set up a permanent Microalgal Mass Cultivation Centre for production of cyanobacterial and microalgal biomass that could be converted into biofuel. The Centre was set up at a cost…

EnAlgae nearing completion of Algal Innovation Centre

EnAlgae nearing completion of Algal Innovation Centre

EnAlgae has announced that colleagues from Cambridge University, in the UK, are nearing completion on their new Algal Innovation Centre, with construction on the project expected to be complete sometime in October 2015. According to the developers the Algal Innovation Centre will address the requirement…

U. of Stuttgart working on algal nutrition for space flights

U. of Stuttgart working on algal nutrition for space flights

Institute for Space Systems (IRS) researchers at the University of Stuttgart, in Germany, are developing systems to ensure nourishment and oxygen during space missions that may last for years. Jens Bretschneider and his colleagues are coming step by step closer to the optimum space diet…

A new “fingerprinting” identification tool for algae

A new “fingerprinting” identification tool for algae

Scientists at Newcastle University and the Scottish Association for Marine Science have developed a new identification tool for algae, which could have a major impact on how algae are categorized in the future. In the same way that people can be recognized by their fingerprints, the algae’s proteome is now being used as…

JCU algae researchers win top award

JCU algae researchers win top award

The Centre for Macroalgal Resources & Biotechnology (MACRO) at James Cook University (JCU), Townsville, Australia, has won this year’s United Nations Association of Australia (UNAA) World Environment Day Award for its groundbreaking research into using algae… [Read the full story]

ABU study considers commercializing algae in Lebanon

ABU study considers commercializing algae in Lebanon

Ned Whalley reports for Lebanon’s Daily Star that scientists from the American University of Beirut (AUB) have released the results of a three-year study on the potential commercial uses of Lebanon’s coastal microalgae, citing possible applications in medicine, agriculture, nutrition, and as a renewable…

Treating pig waste with algae

Treating pig waste with algae

Murdoch University researchers are investigating whether the effluent from piggeries can be effectively treated with micro- and macroalgae so that species of the organism can be safely fed back to pigs. The Cooperative Research Centre for High Integrity Australian Pork (Pork CRC) has invested $300,000 with the…

Exploring red algae for economic benefits

Exploring red algae for economic benefits

James Konstantin Galvez writes in the Manila Times that red algae, or lumut, which many people there consider insignificant, offers huge economic benefits as a source of food and components for industrial products, according to a new study by the University of the Philippines-Marine Science Institute (UPMSI)…

In search of clean water for Jordan

In search of clean water for Jordan

As one of the most water-poor countries in the world, Jordan’s current water resources are significantly below the global water scarcity line. Annual rainfall falls under 50mm in 95% of the country and nearly all the groundwater sources are being seriously overexploited. Experts are warning that the country…

Solarvest to produce therapeutic proteins

Solarvest to produce therapeutic proteins

Montague, Prince Edward Island-based Solarvest has announced that it has used its algal-based production platform to express bioactive therapeutic proteins. The proof of concept study required Solarvest’s Algal Platform to produce Bone Morphogenetic Protein(s) (BMP) and was completed using experts…

Cambridge to build Algal Innovation Centre

Cambridge to build Algal Innovation Centre

Cambridge University, in Cambridge, England, has approved plans to build a new £490,000 ($513,196 US) Algal Innovation Centre facility at their Botanic Garden, which will house experiments looking to exploit the potential of algae as a new hi-tech biofuel. “This is work led by a colleague in the Department…

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