On the 25th of July, fifteen 6th form students selected from sevens schools across East Anglia were invited to spend the day at University of Cambridge to learn about algae research and biotechnology. The event was hosted by PhD students Anthony Riseley, Dept of Biochemistry and Johan Ulrich Kudahl, Dept of Plant Sciences and with support from the Biochemical Society, Dept. of Biochemistry and the Marie Curie training network, Photo.Comm.
The Algae Biotech Experience (ABE) was an event which aimed to:
- Engage the students into the importance and relevance of microbiology in the 21st century;
- Challenge the students to conducting real scientific experiments and molecular techniques such as PCR and phycobilisome extractions and;
- Help the students to discover the importance of algae science in our daily life and its relevance to helping solve problems such as the energy crisis and food security.
The day included wet lab practicals (PCR, phycobilisome extractions), computational projects (bioinformatics/protein structure visualisation), a lecture from a Cambridge scientist, a lab tour and microscopy of various algae species.