Production of isoprenoid-based biofuel in algae using a synthetic biology approach

Lead Research Organisation: University of Cambridge
Department Name: Plant Sciences

Abstract

The World is faced with the considerable challenge of supplementing, and ultimately replacing, its fossil fuel-based economy with one based on clean energy technologies such as biofuels. Currently, commercially available biofuels (e.g. bioethanol and biodiesel) are derived from crop plants such as maize and soybean. However, there are major concerns regarding both the use of valuable agricultural land for production of biofuel crops, and the sustainability and energy balance of such technologies. A potential alternative source of biofuels is microalgae - aquatic photosynthetic organisms that do not require fertile land for cultivation; grow considerably faster than plants, and which can accumulate significant quantities of high-energy compounds such as oils. Furthermore, such aquatic cultivation could be coupled to waste streams such as CO2 output from industry and nutrient-rich effluent, thereby using this waste to promote algal growth. However, industrial-scale cultivation of microalgae for biofuels faces considerable challenges, not just in terms of technical feasibility, but also in terms of the economics and achieving a net positive energy balance. It is recognised that success will probably require the development of superior algal strains in which genetic engineering methods have been used to radically alter and tailor the cell metabolism's towards maximal biofuel productivity under industrial conditions. Currently, the molecular tools needed to create such strains are decided limited and algal metabolic engineering is still in its infancy. In this project, we will develop advanced tools for algae along the lines of the 'synthetic biology' technology now being used to design and create novel bacterial and yeast strains. A particularly, attractive feature of our approach is that we will exploit the ability to introduce new genes into two separate genetic compartments, the nucleus and the chloroplast, thereby allowing elaborate strategies for engineering that employ multiple new genes and create novel biosynthetic pathways within the chloroplast, but which can regulated from the nucleus. We will validate this new technology by creating a series of designer algae that produce two potentially useful fuel molecules - the short-chain hydrocarbon, isoprene and the alcohol, geraniol.

Technical Summary

The aim of this project is to establish tools for straightforward and predictable metabolic engineering in the model green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, as a means to generate strains producing novel biofuel molecules. We will use synthetic biology principles to design a series of PhycoBrick parts that will enable rapid assembly of different genetic elements (coding region, plus regulatory elements such as promoters, enhancers, riboswitches, 3'UTRs, and targeting and epitope tags). In particular we will take advantage of two inducible systems we have discovered in Chlamydomonas, the METE promoter, which is repressed by vitamin B12, and riboswitches in the THI4 gene, which undergoes alternative splicing in the presence of thiamine pyrophosphate. These elements will thus allow tight yet reversible regulation of nuclear transgenes with natural metabolites. A selected subset of these PhycoBrick parts will be assembled into devices and tested for activity using a reporter gene (codon-optimized luciferase, targeted to the chloroplast and with an HA-tag) to provide quantitative output, to establish predictive behaviour of the PhycoBrick parts. Using these data, we will design devices for inducible nuclear expression of higher plant genes for either isoprene synthase (IPS) or geraniol synthase (GES) in Chlamydomonas. This should cause diversion of isoprenoid intermediates to produce isoprene or geraniol respectively. These are small volatile hydrocarbons that have the potential to be used directly as fuel molecules. Further refinement of the isoprene/geraniol-producing strains will be achieved by introduction of trans-operons into the chloroplast genome for genes encoding enzymes for synthesis of IPP (the isoprenoid precursor) and/or down regulation of competing pathways using artificial microRNAs. We will also explore the potential of PhycoBricks for metabolic engineering in other algal species for which transformation procedures have been established.

Planned Impact

The topic of research in this application is relevant to a number of the major research challenges (so-called grand challenges) we face today: CO2 emissions and resulting climate change; dwindling reserves of fossil fuels, particularly those for liquid transport fuels, but also as feedstock for bulk and high-value chemical production; diminishing areas of arable land suitable for food crop production; and water management - both supplies of fresh water and waste-water treatment. Microalgae offer an enormous, as yet essentially untapped resource, which if exploited appropriately could lead to novel solutions to address ALL of the above. Many species have very fast rates of growth, and can accumulate high amounts of lipids, which can be used as fuel molecules. They can capture CO2 from flue-gas and scrub nutrients from effluent, and they do not require fertile land for cultivation. This has been recognized around the World by both governments and industry, leading to considerable investment in both research and development for algal biofuel production. Nevertheless, successful implentation of microalgal biotechnology will require much greater understanding of these organisms than we currently possess. In this application we will be developing tools that will enable much more rapid generation of constructs for metabolic engineering of the model green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. The so-called PhycoBrick parts will establish a standard that can be used to permute the different DNA elements needed for this process into different devices. Using these tools, we will then explore the possibility of engineering Chlamydomonas to make two different fuel molecules, by introduction of one or more of these devices. We will make the Phycobrick parts openly available to the academic community. Both applicants have extensive connections with industry, from small start-up biotech companies, to large multinationals in the chemical and fuel sectors. We will engage with these industrial partners to explore the possibility of exploitation of the PhycoBricks parts, and also the strains that we generate. The likelihood is that scale-up and regulatory issues will require further R&D, but it is conceivable that commercial operations with these strains could occur within the next 5 years. Both applicants are very heavily involved in providing expert knowledge related to the use of algae for production of biofuels and other chemicals, and also to the impact of algae in the environment, such as waste water treatment and bioremediation on the one hand, and removal of algal contaminants on the other. We are frequently asked to give expert opinion by the media, and government agencies, and will continue to do so as part of this project. As well as commercial and academic sectors, the work we will do will have impact on our understanding of algal biology generally. There are over 300,000 different algal species, and marine species contribute up to half of all global CO2 fixation, so the study of these organisms has much wider implications than biotechnological exploitation. Our project will ensure that there are scientists with skills for studying algal biology, not just the PDRAs employed on the grant but also other members of our groups. We will carry out a number of public outreach activities, in which the PDRAs and students will also participate. The activities will build on our experience with mounting an exhibit at the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition this year entitled 'Meet the Algae: Diversity, Biology and Energy'. As well as the stand, we are generating web-based information and resources to enable the general public to find out more about these beautiful organisms.

Publications

10 25 50
publication icon
Abalde-Cela S (2015) High-throughput detection of ethanol-producing cyanobacteria in a microdroplet platform in Journal of The Royal Society Interface

publication icon
Brodie J (2017) The Algal Revolution. in Trends in plant science

publication icon
Helliwell KE (2014) Unraveling vitamin B12-responsive gene regulation in algae. in Plant physiology

publication icon
Kazamia E (2014) An Engineered Community Approach for Industrial Cultivation of Microalgae. in Industrial biotechnology (New Rochelle, N.Y.)

publication icon
Lea-Smith DJ (2015) Contribution of cyanobacterial alkane production to the ocean hydrocarbon cycle. in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

publication icon
Moulin M (2013) Analysis of Chlamydomonas thiamin metabolism in vivo reveals riboswitch plasticity. in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

 
Description Algae are a promising platform for the production of high value compounds (vitamins, pigments, nutraceuticals) as well as lower value bulk chemicals or biofuels, and because they are photosynthetic, algal production may be more sustainable than traditional hosts such as bacteria or yeasts. However, to be able to exploit algae properly we need to have better methods to manipulate them, to increase levels of desired compounds as well as remove competing pathways. In this project we aimed to develop a range of robust and effective tools and methods to do this manipulation.

We took a Synthetic Biology approach - this applies engineering principles to the (re)design of biological systems, with a cycle of Design-Build-Test-Analyse. By using standard building blocks (DNA parts) that are put together in the same way each time it is possible to test which of the parts is best, and in which combination. By this means we identified and characterised a number of parts and were able to develop optimised combinations into what can then be considered 'devices'.

We also established a workflow for introduction of these devices into the alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Although it is easy to put genes into Chlamydomonas (a process known as transformation), they are not always expressed properly, and even if they are, after a few generations the gene can be 'silenced'. By standardising the methods, screening a large number of transformants in highthroughput ways, and measuring the effects quantitatively, we were able to overcome some of these limitations.
Exploitation Route The parts we identified will be available to the algal community for use in other devices.

The standardised workflow can be adopted to avoid some of the difficulties of using Chlamydomonas to express transgenes.
Sectors Agriculture, Food and Drink,Chemicals,Energy,Pharmaceuticals and Medical Biotechnology

 
Description Until recently synthetic biology has been applied mainly to bacteria, but our work has highlighted the potential to use it in establishing microalgae for industrial biotechnology platforms. The idea of using standard parts is increasingly gaining ground in industrial sector as well as academic labs.
First Year Of Impact 2015
Sector Agriculture, Food and Drink,Pharmaceuticals and Medical Biotechnology
Impact Types Economic

 
Description BBSRC IBBE Strategy Panel
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Membership of a guideline committee
Impact The Strategic panel provided advice and guidance for the setting up of the Networks in Industrial Biotechnology & Bioenergy (NIBBs), which aim to foster increased awareness and interaction between academics and industrialists in the bioeconomy. It was also important for the thinking behind the IB Catalysts, joint with Innovate UK & EPSRC. Many of the grants and proof-of-concept awards are aimed at increased sustainability through the use of IB solutions
URL http://www.bbsrc.ac.uk/funding/filter/networks-in-industrial-biotechnology/
 
Description Agri-Inno: Stimulating Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Egypt's Agricultural Sector
Amount £28,520 (GBP)
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2017 
End 01/2017
 
Description Algal Biorefinery: routes for energy and nutrient recovery.
Amount £9,966 (GBP)
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 06/2015 
End 12/2015
 
Description BBSRC-DBT India
Amount £1,200,000 (GBP)
Funding ID BB/K020633/1 
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2013 
End 10/2016
 
Description Bio-cosmetics from Lithops
Amount £5,000 (GBP)
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2015 
End 03/2016
 
Description Business Interaction Voucher
Amount £10,000 (GBP)
Funding ID PHYCBIV-23 
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Department Networks in Industrial Biotechnology and Bioenergy (NIBB)
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 04/2018 
End 10/2018
 
Description FP7 Collaborative project SPLASH
Amount € 9,000,000 (EUR)
Organisation European Commission 
Department Seventh Framework Programme (FP7)
Sector Public
Country European Union (EU)
Start 10/2012 
End 02/2017
 
Description Growth optimisation in next generation algal bioreactors for bioactive compounds
Amount £10,000 (GBP)
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 04/2018 
End 09/2018
 
Description Implementing Algebra guidelines to risk assessments of scale-up of non-native species
Amount £9,500 (GBP)
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 05/2017 
End 10/2017
 
Description Regulation of polyphosphate metabolism in Chlamydomonas and potential for exploitation as phosphorus sink in nutrient recovery systems
Amount £65,772 (GBP)
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2016 
End 10/2019
 
Description Research Grade Algae - a supply bottleneck in algal research and development.
Amount £5,000 (GBP)
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2015 
End 04/2016
 
Description Royal Society Research Grant
Amount £15,000 (GBP)
Organisation The Royal Society 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 03/2016 
End 02/2017
 
Description Scoping a new collaborative and training networks in microbial and invertebrate biotechnology and 'omics' in Malaysia.
Amount £4,064 (GBP)
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 03/2017 
End 05/2017
 
Description Strategic LoLa
Amount £2,400,000 (GBP)
Funding ID BB/L002957/1 
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2014 
End 12/2017
 
Description Synthetic Biology Centres
Amount £12,000,000 (GBP)
Funding ID BB/L014130/1 
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 06/2014 
End 05/2019
 
Description Promoting algae for industrial biotechnology 
Organisation Rothamsted Research
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution I have been very active in promoting the idea of using algae as industrial biotechnology (IB) hosts. This has led to a successful BBSRC sLoLa award, and also contributed to the debate about how to cement the rather fragmented algal expertise in the UK. Ultimately the introduction of the BBSRC networks in IB (NIBBs) were borne out of this debate, and these include Phyconet, which is specifically algal biotechnology. In addition several other NIBBs consider using algae as source of novel products, pathways, genes (NPRONet, HVCfP), or as platforms for community based metabolism (ADNET)
Collaborator Contribution Research and development collaborations with colleagues in the algal biotechnology field, but also in metabolic engineering and SMEs in algal biotechnology
Impact sLoLa Several BBSRC NIBBs, with Phyconet as specific one on algal biotechnology IB Catalyst award
Start Year 2009
 
Description Promoting algae for industrial biotechnology 
Organisation University College London
Department Division of Biosciences
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution I have been very active in promoting the idea of using algae as industrial biotechnology (IB) hosts. This has led to a successful BBSRC sLoLa award, and also contributed to the debate about how to cement the rather fragmented algal expertise in the UK. Ultimately the introduction of the BBSRC networks in IB (NIBBs) were borne out of this debate, and these include Phyconet, which is specifically algal biotechnology. In addition several other NIBBs consider using algae as source of novel products, pathways, genes (NPRONet, HVCfP), or as platforms for community based metabolism (ADNET)
Collaborator Contribution Research and development collaborations with colleagues in the algal biotechnology field, but also in metabolic engineering and SMEs in algal biotechnology
Impact sLoLa Several BBSRC NIBBs, with Phyconet as specific one on algal biotechnology IB Catalyst award
Start Year 2009
 
Description Promoting algae for industrial biotechnology 
Organisation University of Aberdeen
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution I have been very active in promoting the idea of using algae as industrial biotechnology (IB) hosts. This has led to a successful BBSRC sLoLa award, and also contributed to the debate about how to cement the rather fragmented algal expertise in the UK. Ultimately the introduction of the BBSRC networks in IB (NIBBs) were borne out of this debate, and these include Phyconet, which is specifically algal biotechnology. In addition several other NIBBs consider using algae as source of novel products, pathways, genes (NPRONet, HVCfP), or as platforms for community based metabolism (ADNET)
Collaborator Contribution Research and development collaborations with colleagues in the algal biotechnology field, but also in metabolic engineering and SMEs in algal biotechnology
Impact sLoLa Several BBSRC NIBBs, with Phyconet as specific one on algal biotechnology IB Catalyst award
Start Year 2009
 
Description AlgaeEurope 2015 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Presentation of research into algal synthetic biology to the principle conference in Europe aimed at supporting and developing the algal biotechnology sector. About half the participants were from industry (including large multisector, SMEs and startups)and 10% or so policy makers and officials eg from EU. The aim was to inform this group about the potential of synthetic biology in developing algal industrial biotechnology, providing the impetus to consider algae as production platforms for high value products as well as simply for biomass production. As a result, a consortium has been formed of academic colleagues who will share best practice and resources in SynBio.

I also described our recently opened Algal Innovation Centre (AIC), where it is possible to carry out pilot-scale algal cultivation, including of GM algae. As a result of the talk several contacts have been made with companies who are interested in the AIC.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Authentic Biology Symposium 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact The Authentic Biology programme, funded by the Wellcome Trust, enables post 16 students to carry out real research in their schools. They then get to present their work at the symposium in London. I was invited to speak to them about my work on algal bioenergy, and then to engage with them about studying science at university. Several of the students (the majority from state schools) were encouraged to make applications to Oxbridge as a result.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.authentic-biology.org/
 
Description BBC Radio 4 Frontiers - What ever happened to biofuels? 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact I was one of 4 invited participants in this programme, broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and available as a podcast. I had many emails and contacts from the wider public, including at the Festival of Plants exhibit, generally indicating that this had increased people's awareness of the possibility to use solar energy with algae, not just for biofuels, but also for other 'green tech'. Their attitude to biofuels per se was also more positive.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
URL http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/player/b02ykygv
 
Description BBSRC funded Algal Biotechnology workshop for researchers and industry representatives from New Zealand and UK to discuss progress and opportunities in the exploitation of microalgae 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The workshop brought together algal researchers and industry representatives from New Zealand and UK to discuss progress and opportunities in the exploitation of microalgae, particularly as feedstock for aquaculture and as sustainable sources of novel bio-products. The UK delegation included six leading academics, together with representatives of four SMEs from the algal biotech sector: namely, Varicon Aqua, TeeGene Ltd, Greenskill Ltd and Algenuity. Approximate 20 NZ delegates joined the workshop and comprised algal researchers from the Cawthron Institute, several NZ universities, and biotech companies in the Nelson region. We were also honoured to be joined by Min Sung Park, a world authority on algal biotechnology and Distinguished Professor at the Centre for Microalgal Biotechnology and Biofuels, Institute of Hydrobiology, Wuhan, China
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://www.phyconet.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/NZ-UK-workshop-report.pdf
 
Description Festival of Plants, Botanical Garden, Cambridge 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Exhibit at the Festival of Plants (was called Fascination of Plants in 2012) in Cambridge University Botanic Garden. It provided basic information about algae, showcased our scientific work, and then explained how we were using this in collaboration with companies to carry out remeidation of waste water. There were activities such as viewing microalgae with microscopes and observing algae phototaxis. Children could handcraft their own algae using pipe cleaners or take part in an interactive algae quiz to win prices. Several members of the public asked for additional information.

Interest from several visitors about how to incorporate algal growth in their activities, eg anaerobic digestion or green energy generally
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012,2013,2014,2015
URL http://www.botanic.cam.ac.uk/Botanic/Event.aspx?p=27&ix=351&pid=2718&prcid=0&ppid=2718
 
Description High Value Products from Plants conference 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Presentation of algal synthetic biology approaches to help support algal industrial biotechnology. This was at a Network in Industrial Biotechnology & Bioenergy (NIBB) meeting organised by the High Value Compounds from Plants NIBB. Interest was sparked amongst researchers to consider using algae, as well as plants, and production platforms.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description IntoBiology resource 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact A final year undergraduate student in Plant Sciences produced a webpage describing work on algae in Plant Sciences and Biochemistry. The webpage is part of the programme established by IntoBiology, aimed at encouraging school children to consider studying plant biology.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://intobiology.org.uk/unlocking-the-potential-of-algae-how-the-green-stuff-in-your-pond-might-go...
 
Description PHYCONET (BBSRC NIBB) Meeting: "UK Microalgal biotechnology, creating a unified vision" Cambridge February 2018 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact A workshop of academia, funders, policy makers and industry, aimed at identifying ways to augment and support the UK microalgal business. As a result of the meeting, we made links with several companies and have obtained two Business Interaction Vouchers
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL http://www.phyconet.org.uk/document_category/uk-microalgal-biotechnology-creating-a-unified-vision
 
Description Phyconet (BBSRC NIBB) Annual Meeting, Plenary speaker 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact The talk was aimed at showing that the potential exploitation of algae for industrial purposes needs to be underpinned by fundamental biological understanding. Several industrial colleagues agreed, saying they recognise the need for better algal taxonomy and physiology to support their activities and ensure their IP can be protected.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://www.phyconet.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/PAC17_programme.pdf
 
Description Pint of Science 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact I presented a talk on the potential uses of algae for bioenergy production as part of the Pint of Science festival in Cambridge, where scientists engage with people having a drink in a local pub. This takes place in London, Cambridge, Bristol and other university towns each year. As result of my talk and questions afterwards, although most people were not aware initially what algae were, nor how they could be used to generate energy, their opinions became more positive and optimistic towards biofuels generally. Pint of Science was awarded "Points of Light" by the Prime Minister David Cameron in November 2015 and the founders were interviewed about it on London Live TV.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014,2015
URL https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pint_of_Science
 
Description Science on Saturday, part of SET week in Cambridge 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact We had a stand in the science tent outside Dept of Plant Sciences. We demonstrated what algae are, what we use for now and how they might be used in the future for energy production. There were activities such as viewing microalgae with microscopes, extracting different light-harvesting pigments, and observing algae phototaxis. Children could handcraft their own algae using pipe cleaners or take part in an interactive algae quiz to win prices.

School asked for visit to talk to years 10-13.

Established the material to mount a Royal Society Summer Science Exhibit
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2006,2007,2008,2015,2016
 
Description Science on Sundays 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Short talk and Q&A on the nature of algae and how their characteristics could be used for sustainable energy, water remediation, or other green tech solutions. Held in the Cambridge Botanic Garden, the audience were interested in plants, and so this was an opportunity to provide information on what algae are, and how they might be used in novel ways. The audience fed back that they felt much better informed.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.botanic.cam.ac.uk/Botanic/NewsItem.aspx?p=27&ix=196
 
Description Science with Impact at SEB annual meeting 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Invited to present overview of using algae to capture CO2 and generate energy in "Science with Impact" session at Society for Experimental Biology (SEB) annual conference in Prague. Media interest on this session at the time, and session report published in SEB magazine (Autumn 2015, pp 50-51), prompting requests from schools and other science engagement organisations to speak.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.sebiology.org/meetings/Past_Meetings/Prague2015/education.html
 
Description The Life Scientific on BBC Radio 4 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact I was interviewed by Jim Al-Khalili about my scientific career and interest in algae and vitamins. The programme "The Life Scientific" was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and was also available on BBC iPlayer and as a podcast. As a result I have had numerous contacts about possible scientific and industrial collaborations, as well as enquiries from the general public about the various topics.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08bzl8y