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[Past Seminar]May.3.2017 Study of Cyanobacterial Extremophiles

Study of Cyanobacterial Extremophiles

Professor Pengcheng Fu

TimeWednesday,May.3,2:00-3:00 pm

Place: BUCT Library Center Conference Room

  

 

  Abstract:

 

  Extremophiles are microorganisms—whether viruses, prokaryotes, or eukaryotes— that survive under harsh environmental conditions that include atypical temperature, pH, salinity, pressure, nutrient, oxic and radiation levels. Our research focus is on those algae in places where life was least expected, which have successfully developed a number of adaptive features including produce pigments to protect against high light; secret polyols (sugar alcohols, e.g. glycerine), sugars and lipids (oils); and form mucilage sheaths, motile stages and spore formation.

  I will explain our research on the alga (cyanobacterium) JSC-1 inhabiting in the iron-depositing hot springs (IDHS) that suffers enormous oxidative stress. This IDHS situation represent a rare earth ecosystem with similarities to shallow areas in a late Archean ocean and probably to ancient hot springs on Mars due to extremely high concentration of Fe2+ (~ 75 µM), high temperature (60°C) and permanent presence of H2O2. The siderophilic (iron-loving) cyanobacteria inhabiting IDHS can be considered as a present-day model to microorganisms that may have lived in an Archean-Proterosoic ocean. Cell cultures, genome-scale modeling and high-throughput omix tchniques have been used to investigate the mechanism of this siderophilic cyanobacteria to increase our understanding on it.

 

 

  Speaker:

 

  Professor Fu received his undergraduate training in chemical engineering at Zhejing University, China in 1982. He obtained his M.S. degree in chemical engineering at Zhejing University in 1988 and his Ph.D. degree in biochemical engineering at University of Sydney, Australia in 1996, respectively. He then performed postdoctoral research in Kyushu Institute of Technology, Japan, University of Minnesota and University of California at San Diego respectively during 1996–2000. Dr. Fu was employed by Diversa Corp (recently renamed Verenium, San Diego, CA) in 2001–2002. He joined the faculty at the Department of Molecular Biosciences and Bioengineering in the University of Hawaii at Manoa in 2002. He then joined the faculty in China University of Petroleum, Beijing in 2009. Professor Fu’s area of research interests include: Systems Biology and Synthetic Biology, Biofuels and Bioenergy, Metabolic Engineering, Functional Genomics, Bioremediation of polluted soils, Wastewater Treatment, Algal Biotechnology, Metabolomics/Metabolite Profiling. Currently, he is a full time PI in BAIC-SM.