Deep dive into marine biotech

New research suggests that ocean currents with different temperatures, which are known to influence the distribution of species in the sea, might also drive the evolution of new species. Photo: iStock.

Flinders University researchers are among some of the world’s leading marine biotech scientists gathering in Adelaide.

They will discuss the latest developments in first-generation fisheries, second-gen aquaculture as well as advanced third-gen marine bioproducts developments and processing are all on the agenda during the five-day event, says conference Chair and Convenor, Flinders Professor Wei Zhang.

It is the first time during its 34-year history that the Asia-Pacific Marine Biotechnology Conference (APMBC) will be held in the Australia/New Zealand region. The 13th APMBC and 5th ANZ Marine Biotechnology Society Conference will be held at the Adelaide Convention Centre from 2-6 October.

Professor Wei Zhang

“The combination of the Australian and New Zealand marine territories makes it the second largest in the world and the largest in the Asia-Pacific region, with a rich biodiversity,” says Professor Zhang.

“This presents an ocean of opportunities for global collaboration and partnership in developing Australian and New Zealand blue bioeconomy, which is very small when compared to other marine bio economies such as China, Japan, Korea, USA and European countries.”

Around 300 delegates from over 15 countries and regions are attending with 80 per cent of them travelling from overseas.  The top three countries with the highest number of guests are China, Australia and Japan. Flinders University has the highest number of participants from any one single organisation at the conference.

Guests include marine biologists, industry, investors and policy makers in current marine biotechnology research, and industry development from key organisations such as CSIRO, Marine Bioproducts CRC, Flinders University, the PIRSA research arm South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI), University of the Sunshine Coast, Southern Cross University, Deakin University and University of Tasmania.

Flinders Emeritus Professor Chris Franco, the Conference Co-Chair, says that the conference represents a great opportunity to participate in the growth and future development of the marine biotechnology industry in the region and globally.

Seaweed is among marine organisms suited to bioproduct development in Australia.

Conference co-chair and APMBC executive committee member Professor Professor Rob Lewis adds: “The power of sharing our scientific findings helps advance research outcomes and the potential for collaboration and industry translation.  It also leads to improved biodiversity management, ocean environment and ecosystem management on a global scale.”

Professor Wei Zhang will deliver a plenary talk on “Circular Blue Bioeconomy by Design-Empowered Marine Bioindustry 3.0+” on Friday, 6 October 2023.

Other keynote speakers from Flinders University are:

Professor Youhong Tang, Matthew Flinders Professor, College of Science and Engineering, Flinders University

Keynote: Aggregation-induced emission aggregates enabled microalgae studies towards commercialisation

Associate Professor Munish Puri, Associate Professor, College of Medicine and Public Health, Flinders University

Keynote: Tuning oleaginous marine microbes for producing single-cell oils and high-value bioactives

Dr Adarsha Gupta, Research Associate, College of Medicine and Public Health, Flinders University

Keynote: Optimisation of pineapple extract assisted cell disruption of wet thraustochytrid biomass to improve lipid extraction

PhD presentations include:

Sharmin Rakhi, Flinders University

Keynote: Tailoring Conditions for Improved Growth and Lipid Accumulation in Microalgae with Aggregation-Induced Emission (AIE) Based Photosensitiser

Miansong Zhang, Flinders University

Keynote: Significant changes in nutritional composition & metabolite profiles of sea cucumber Apostichopus japonicus by microwave pretreatment

The 13th Asia-Pacific Marine Biotechnology Conference is being held jointly with the 5th ANZ Marine Biotechnology Society Conference on 2-6 October at the Adelaide Convention Centre. Keynote speakers and other conference information is available here.


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