Microbes as a tool: TSU presented new developments for biotech

Tomsk State University has hosted the fourth Russian Microbiological Congress, with 400 scientists fr om leading research centers of Russia participating. They will present research results that may be a basis for new biotechnologies, as well as already-formed approaches to solving environmental issues, ensuring food security, and discovering new medicines.

“The fact that so many scientists are participating means that such congresses are in demand, we need new contacts and new collaborations,” said Elizaveta Bonch-Osmolovskaya. “Tomsk is a beautiful university city, one of the world-class centers of Russian microbiology. Our colleagues from TSU perform at a high professional level, and they have a very diverse and fruitful collaboration. They are always doing something completely new, and that is science.”

Elizabeth Bonch-Osmolovskaya, President of the Interregional Russian Microbiological Society, Corresponding Member of the Russian Academy of Sciences

During the five-day congress, research results were presented on such topics of concern as the use of microorganisms in technologies for environmental remediation and solving the problem of antibiotic resistance and preventing it from occurring in humans. Furthermore, participants discussed microbial technologies in the food industry and agriculture, manufacture of new products using microorganisms, approaches to biological protection of plants, and a number of other areas related to the use of microorganisms.

Participants in the fourth Russian Microbiological Congress

Photo: Participants in the fourth Russian Microbiological Congress

It should be noted that TSU was chosen for a particular reason. This year, the first university in Siberia celebrates its 145th anniversary. At the same time, the Department of Plant Physiology and Anatomy celebrates its 100th anniversary. Currently, this unit is called the Department of Plant Physiology, Biotechnology and Bioinformatics of TSU, and it unites teachers and researchers of two laboratories “Biotechnology and Bioengineering” and “Biochemistry and Molecular Biology”.

One of the largest Russian projects in genetic technologies is currently being carried out at TSU, wh ere a school of microbiology recognized in Russia and the world has been established. The interdisciplinary team, which includes scientists from TSU, the federal research center Fundamentals of Biotechnology of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow State University, Kurchatov Institute, Institute of General and Experimental Biology of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and the Support for Education Projects Foundation, is conducting research aimed at providing the population with safe products that do not contain antibiotic-resistant microbes.