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  • Michael Bernstein


    GenØk - Centre for Biosafety, Trasndisciplinary Collaborative for BioTechnoscience (Norway)

    Michael studies and works to connect research and innovation practice with long-term public interests like sustainability. He has experience collaborating with science and engineering educators, students, researchers, policy makers, industry, and CSOs across a variety of scientific and technical domains (e.g., nanotechnology, global climate change, and nuclear waste management). Examples of this work include supporting the Expert & Citizen Assessment of Science & Technology (ECAST) network’s efforts to use citizen participation, collaboration and expert analysis to inform and improve decision-making on siting nuclear waste; evaluating Science Outside the Lab, a policy immersion program to help PhD scientists and engineers learn about the relationships between science and government in the U.S.; and analyzing efforts by the U.S. Global Change Research Program to manage research for usability to policy-makers. He now works on the NewHoRRIzon project, a European Commission funded effort to advance ideas of and practices for responsible research and innovation across European Union, member state, and associated country science and technology funding programs.

    Anne-Belinda Bjerre

    Professor, PhD

    Danish Technological Institute (Denmark)

    Professor Anne-Belinda Bjerre is the scientific leader of the Biorefinery Group at DTI. During her 34 years research career at Risø National Laboratory (Risø DTU) and now at DTI, she has a long record in science of biomass conversion i.e. biorefinery of lignocellulose and seaweed to ethanol, butanol, biogas, and value-added products with an extensive record of publication, including 90 peer reviewed articles; more than 65 printed abstracts and proceedings; more than 100 conference presentation (posters and oral); 11 chapters in books and refereed research reports; 6 patents; H-factor 36; Citations 5,778 (updated August 2018). Anne-Belinda Bjerre has educated 12 PhD students, several post docs and guest scientists, masters and bachelor students during her career. Besides her job at DTI, Anne-Belinda is Adjunct professor at Aalborg University and she is Project Coordinator of large scale projects under Horizon 2020, BBI, Eranet, and Innovantionsfond Denmark with main focus, the last 7 years, on macro-algae research and demonstration.

    Catherine Boccadoro

    Research Director

    NORCE Norwegian Research Centre

    Catherine (Kate) Boccadoro is Research Director at NORCE and leads the Biotechnology research group in Stavanger, Norway. She holds a PhD in microbiology and biodegradation from the University of Cambridge. She develops and directs research projects in biodegradation, molecular microbial markers for the detection of pollutants in the marine environment, microbial populations and microbial production of biomass and chemicals through fermentation. She also leads the Norwegian Bioprocessing and Fermentation Centre (NBioC), a new research infrastructure focusing on bioprocess development, scale-up and piloting.

    Fayza Daboussi

    Research Director

    French National Institute for Agricultural Research (France)

    Fayza Daboussi, Research Director at the French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA). After 6 years in academic laboratories, she joined a biotechnology company, Cellectis, specialized in cancer immunotherapy and genome editing technologies. Over the 6 years spent in the Cellectis Company, she has developed strong scientific expertise in the genome engineering and synthetic biology fields in various model organisms. In 2012, she was given the responsibility of a key project stemming from a partnership between Total and Cellectis to develop microalgae-based oil substitutes. In 2015, she was appointed research director at the French National Institute for Agricultural Research to create a research group focused on the development of synthetic biology in microalgae within LISBP (Biosystems and Biochemical Engineering Laboratory). In 2018, she joins the scientific committee of the preindustrial demonstrator Toulouse White Biotechnologies.

    Fernando de la Calle

    Head of Department

    PharmaMar (Spain)

    Dr Fernando de la Calle is currently the Head of the Microbiology Dpt. within Drug Discovery (R&D) at PharmaMar, biopharma involved in the development and commercialization of anticancer drugs of marine origin. He received his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from UAM (Madrid) in 1998. He also completed an Executive-MBA at IDE-CESEM (Madrid) in 2005. He has more than 30 years’ experience working in drug discovery from marine microorganisms. He is an Expert in Applied Biotechnology, Molecular characterization of bacterial Biodiversity and the use of Biotechnology tools for Drug Discovery . Co-author of the current hemisynthetic process for manufacturing the anticancer Yondelis®, the first European marine derived compound approved. In addition, he has been external advisor for biotechnology issues to the Spanish Government (INCUAL), current member of the International Advisory Group of european ERA-NET for Marine Biotechnology and Biodiversity, reviewer for H2020 and ERA-NET projects and the scientific contact person from PharmaMar for FP7/H2020 EU projects related to Marine Biodiversity such as MAMBA, MaCuMBA, MicroB3 and INMARE as WP leader. Principal Investigator in more than 10 other nationally funded projects.

    Tom Ellis

    Reader in Synthetic Biology

    Imperial College London (UK)

    Dr Tom Ellis FRSC is a Reader in Synthetic Genome Engineering in the Bioengineering Department of Imperial College London with 50 publications in synthetic biology including work in Science, PNAS, Nature Methods & Nature Biotechnology. Dr Ellis is leading the UK’s effort in the world’s largest synthetic biology project: the Synthetic Yeast Genome (Sc2.0) project, and was recently appointed Associate Faculty in Synthetic Genomics by the Sanger Institute. His research focuses on design-led synthetic biology, developing genetic tools to better understand biology and program new functions including sensing, computation and biosynthesis. Dr Ellis holds a 5-year EPSRC Fellowship on synthetic biology, is on the editorial board for ACS Synthetic Biology and scientific advisory board of Addgene.org.

    Øyvind Eriksen

    Laboratory Manager

    Rise PFI AS

    Øyvind Eriksen has an MSc in chemical engineering and a PhD in paper physics from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). He started as a Research Scientist at RISE PFI in 2008, and has since 2013 been the Laboratory Manager at RISE PFI. His research has ranged from production of pulp and paper to production and applications of novel materials from lignocellulosic raw materials. Most of his research the last years have been in industry driven projects with a large implementation focus. Øyvind is the project manager of the Norwegian Biorefinery Laboratory (NorBioLab) infrastructure project.

    Hogne Hallaråker

    Founder and CSO

    Arctic Nutrition AS (Norway)

    Mr. Hallaråker is the founder and developer of a Phase IIb medicinal product for treating mild to moderate Psoriasis. He is an entrepreneur with more than 15 years of experience in Nutraceutical and Biomarine industries. His keen passion and knowledge within Natural sciences has resulted in a first-in-class pharmaceutical pipeline targeting auto-immune disease based entirely on extracts from Norwegian spring spawning herring. Mr Hallaråker has authored several scientific publications and patents covering composition, use and processing. He holds a M.Sc. degree in Marine Biology and Aquaculture from the University of Bergen. Former positions include CEO Arctic Nutrition, CEO Natural Nutrition Development, VP R&D Aker Biomarine, Product Director Natural ASA and Assistant Professor in Natural Science, Volda University College.

    Trond Helgerud

    Alginate Commercial Technology Manager

    DuPont Nutrition & Health (Norway)

    Trond Helgerud is Alginate and Carrageenan R&D Manager in DuPont Nutrition & Health and Managing Director at the Norwegian subsidiary FMC BioPolymer AS. Educational background is MSc in organic chemistry and petrochemistry at University of Oslo 1984. After 8 years at Dept for Hydrocarbon Process Chemistry at SI in Oslo, moving to Pronova Biopolymer in 1992 as lab manager for the alginate application lab. Pronova was acquired by FMC Corp in 1999 and he then assumed responsibility for alginate R&D and technology support, engaging in R&D and business development projects internally and with customers and partners worldwide. Appointed as managing director of FMC BioPolymer AS in 2006 and holds a seat at the Board.

    Ralf Kellmann

    Scientific Leader

    Neosaxitoxin Research Consortium, The University of Bergen (Norway)

    Dr Ralf Kellmann is the scientific leader of the neosaxitoxin research consortium at the University of Bergen. He has obtained his MSc in 1999 at the Department of Marine Science, Otago University (New Zealand), and his PhD in 2005 at the School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, University of NSW(Australia). His research focus is on the biosynthesis and genetics of microalgal toxins. Neosaxitoxin is a member of the paralytic shellfish toxin family and presently undergoing clinical trials as a novel pain medicine that can replace opioids in perioperative pain management. Industrial production of neosaxtoxin is challenging, however, as the natural producer organisms are difficult to culture, and chemical synthesis is exceedingly complex with low yields. Kellmann has previously discovered the biosynthesis genes for neosaxitoxin and its analogues, driven by the question, why phylogenetically divergent organisms, such as marine dinoflagellates and freshwater cyanobacteria can produce these complex and unique metabolites. The neosaxitoxin team is utilising the genetic knowledge in conjunction with tools from synthetic biology to develop a sustainable and economic industrial production process.

    Hans Kleivdal

    Executive Vice President – Environment

    NORCE Norwegian Research Centre

    Dr. Hans Kleivdal is the Executive Vice President of the Environment department of NORCE, and is also Adjunct Associate Professor in marine biotechnology at the University of Bergen. He holds a Dr.scient in molecular biology on antibiotic resistance, and worked with algal toxins as potential chemotherapeutics during his post doc. After 9 years in the private biotech industry working on toxin detection and monitoring for environmental and food safety purposes, he joined the research institute Uni Research (now NORCE) in 2010 where he established the research group of applied biotechnology in Bergen. His research focus on enzyme discovery and development, bioprospecting and the development of microalgae for industrial purposes. Kleivdal currently heads the NORCE research and innovation focus on molecular ecology, marine and freshwater ecology, sustainable aquaculture, and biotechnology with some 100 researchers in Stavanger, Bergen and Tromsø.

    Hordur Kristinsson

    Chief Science and Innovation Officer

    Matis (Iceland)

    Dr. Kristinsson is the Chief Science and Innovation Officer of Matis (English.matis.is), and is an Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Florida and Courtesy Professor at the University of Iceland. He was previously an Associate Professor in Food Chemistry at the University of Florida. He has a PhD in Food Biochemistry, an MS degree in Food Science, an MBA and B.Sc. (hons.) in Molecular Biology. He combines over 20 years of practical experience of working in the food, biotech and functional ingredient industry with extensive commercial and research expertise in the production of various products and ingredients. He is the holder of six patents and has published over 110 peer-reviewed papers, book chapters and books. He has led numerous research and development projects funded by industry and competitive grant programs in the USA, Europe and Iceland, and currently manages several major national and international research and development projects. Dr. Kristinsson has worked with several major food companies as well as a large number of SMEs and entrepreneurs. Dr. Kristinsson has been directly involved in and founded several company start-ups in bioprocessing and functional ingredients. Dr. Kristinsson is the chair of the Nordic Bioeconomy Panel and was an appointed expert member of the first European Bioeconomy Panel from 2013-2015. Dr. Kristinsson also leads the activities of Matis in EIT Food (www.eitfood.eu), one of the largest food-related initiatives worldwide which aims for Europe to lead a global revolution in food innovation and production in the next seven years.

    Roger Linington

    Associate Professor

    Simon Fraser University (Canada)

    Professor Linington received his B.Sc. in Chemistry from the University of Leeds in the UK, his Ph.D. from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver Canada under the supervision of Prof. Raymond Andersen, and postdoctoral work with Prof. William Gerwick at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UCSD where he was a participating member of the Panama ICBG project. During this time he lived and worked in Panama City, Panama, running a semi-independent marine natural products drug discovery program. From 2007 to 2015 he was a faculty member at the University of California Santa Cruz in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. Since 2015 he has been an Associate Professor of Chemistry at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada where he is also a Tier II Canada Research Chair in High-Throughput Screening and Chemical Biology. He is the recipient of several awards, including the 2014 American Society of Pharmacognosy Matt Suffness Young Investigator award. He has published 68 manuscripts, and his research program focuses on designing new screening and analytical methods for natural products discovery.

    Marianne Nymark

    Research Scientist

    NTNU Department of Biology (Norway)

    Marianne Nymark has a MSc in molecular biotechnology from the The Arctic University of Norway (UiT) and a PhD in biology from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). She has worked with marine diatoms since 2008, and is currently employed as a research scientist at the Cell, molecular biology and genomics group (CMBG) at NTNU, focusing on diatom functional genomics and strain improvement using the CRISPR/Cas9 technology. The CMBG group established the CRISPR/Cas9 technology for marine diatoms in 2016, and has further developed the technique to enable transgene-free genome editing.

    Håvard Sletta

    Research Manager

    Department of Biotechnology and Nanomedicine, SINTEF Industry (Norway)

    Håvard Sletta leads the Research group of Biotechnology (RGB) at SINTEF Industry. He has more than 25 years experience in development of bioprocesses in cooperation with industry. The RGB is currently involved several ongoing projects focusing on marine- and industrial biotechnology, strain engineering, synthetic- and systems biology, novel drugs, biopolymers and advanced biomaterials. The marine biorefinery part of this activity is focusing on development of tools and processes for processing of marine biomass, and development and application of marine biomass derived products. Sletta is leading several activities in this field, including national and international projects.

    Helena Vieira

    Executive Director

    Bluebio Alliance (Portugal)

    Helena Vieira has been an entrepreneur for the past 16 years. She has founded a few startups and was co-founder and CEO (2005-2013) of BIOALVO SA, a Portuguese natural resources biotech company. Currently, Helena is the Executive Director of BLUEBIO ALLIANCE, the Portuguese network for the marine bioresources sector. She is also a Full Associated Invited Professor within the Faculty of Sciences at the University of Lisbon, responsible for all teaching of Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Technology Transfer. She is a PI at the BioISI centre, responsible for the blue biotechnology unit at the Microbiology and Biotechnology lab. She is an expert in marine biotech at the UN DAOLOS, Pool of Experts, BBI-JU SC, European Marine Board and at the International Advisory Board of ERA NET MARINE BIOTECH. Helena has been an invited mentor for several national and international mentoring programs.

    Ragnhild Dragøy Whitaker

    Research Director


    Ragnhild Dragøy Whitaker is the director for the marine biotechnology group at Nofima. The group focuses on identifying, testing, isolating and scaling bioactive and valuable components, ingredients, peptides, molecules and composites from unused biomass. We mainly work with marine biomass and collaborate towards the terrestrial biomasses. The group develops processes in lab scale, and subsequently ensure that they are scalable and we can make prototype products at the demonstration facility, Biotep, which is owns and operated by Nofima. We work closely with consumer acceptance groups, with LCA and ensuing that the marine ingredients developed are sustainable and accepted in the market. Ragnhild holds a PhD in Chemistry and a MBA in sustainable innovation within the seafood sector. She has previously worked within bioprospecting and drug delivery before joining Nofima in 2014.

    Nadine Ziemert


    University of Tübingen (Germany)

    Nadine Ziemert received her Diploma and PhD degrees from the Humboldt University in Berlin, followed by a postdoc and project scientist position at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, California. Since 2015, she is a Professor at the University of Tübingen, where she leads an interdisciplinary research group focusing on genome mining approaches and the evolution of secondary metabolites in bacteria and their diverse functions.

    Margareth Øverland


    NMBU, Faculty of Biosciences (Norway)

    Margareth Øverland has a BSc and MSc in animal nutrition from Montana State University in Montana USA and a PhD in animal nutrition from the Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU). Today, she is a professor in nutrition at NMBU and she is the Center Director of a Center for Research-based Innovation (CRI), Foods of Norway. Margareths' research focus is to develop high-quality novel feed ingredients based on renewable natural resources such as tree biomass, marine macroalgae, and animal and fish co-products by use of advanced biotechnology and biorefinery technology. The research also aims to improve feed efficiency by innovative feed-processing technology and by use of advanced genomic analysis to support genetic adaptation of fish and other farm animals to the novel feed ingredients.