More than 50 representatives from nearly 40 businesses and public sector bodies attended Edinburgh Innovations’ Bio-Solutions Showcase.
The event aims to build relationships between the University of Edinburgh and new and existing partners, and open up opportunities for world-leading researchers to work with external organisations innovate.
Academics showcased a range of technological applications based on biological systems to demonstrate how biotechnology can create useful products and improve processes across a range of sectors.
A fast-paced half-day of talks, breakout sessions and networking discussions brought together academics spanning the broad biotechnology field with businesses, government, public-sector agencies and funding bodies.
Organisations represented included the Scottish Government, BASF Global, Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies and Marks & Spencer, as well as a range of startups and SMEs.
Researchers with interests in the biotech field were present from the Schools of Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Engineering, Geosciences, Informatics, Mathematics, and Physics & Astronomy.
‘Diverse and thought-provoking’
Clive Roper, Head of In Vitro Toxicology at drug development company Charles River, a US company with a research facility in East Lothian, said his sector has recently transformed from a “non innovative world into a very, very innovative world”.
“The presentations have been very good – diverse and thought-provoking.
“We’re a local employer, so we’re always looking to connect with our supply of talent and we’re always interested in innvations.”
– Clive Roper, Head of In Vitro Toxicology, Charles River.
The showcase began with plenary sessions by Dr Louise Horsfall on bio-based solutions for a circular economy; Professor Cait MacPhee on biofilms, biomaterials and nanoscale self-assembly; and Dr Diego Oyarzum on next-generation data modelling for biotechnology.
Breakout sessions focused on subjects ranging from “plastic as a substrate for the circular economy” to “bioinspired engineering”.
The closing talk was from Professor Andy Mount, Dean of Research from the College of Science & Engineering.