Bioprocess engineering is a specialisation of chemical engineering; it deals with the design and development of equipment and processes for the manufacturing of products such as agriculture, food, feed, pharmaceuticals, nutraceuticals, chemicals and polymers and paper from biological material and treatment of waste water.
Expertise in this field is a combination of knowledge in biotechnology and engineering. Bioprocess engineers develop concept technologies in the bioprocess space – anything that takes into account producing a product from biological material such as yeast, fungi, bacteria, algae, viruses, mammalian cells or any type of biological single cell process.
The CSIR applies its bioprocess engineering expertise mainly in the area of fermentation. CSIR researchers work with bacteria, mainly bacillus, yeast and algae.
In one of the projects at the CSIR, bioprocess engineering is used on Bacillus for biological control. Through this technology platform that the CSIR has developed over the past 10 – 15 years, the organisation has created a spin-out company, OptimusBio.
Moreover, the CSIR’s expertise in bioprocess engineering is applied in yeast fermentation that is conducted around embrox to produce a high-value compound through a mixture of fermentation cultivation and the biotransformation of a substrate.
The CSIR is also working on E.coli which is a recombinant organism that produces insulin-like growth factor with an extremely high value. The project is conducted for JVS Biotech.