Biochemical and Molecular Engineering XX

The Next Generation of Biochemical Engineering: From nanoscale to industrial scale

An ECI Conference Series

July 16-20, 2017

The Duke Marriott Newport Beach
(formerly Newport Beach Fairmont)
Newport Beach, CA, USA

Call for Nominations–2017 Amgen Award               List of Past Amgen Awardees

Call for Abstracts!                          Request for Next Mailing

Call for Nominations–2017 Elsevier Young Investigator Award

Please forward this link to colleagues who may be interested in the conference topic.

About This Conference

This 20th edition of the Biochemical and Molecular Engineering conference continues on a long tradition of bringing together the Biochemical Engineering community from around the world. The central theme of this year’s meeting will highlight The Next Generation of Biochemical Engineering: From nanoscale to industrial scale by showcasing innovative solutions emerging from both academia and industry. Our goal is to bring together academics and industrial participants for vibrant exchange of ideas while enjoying the amenities of the Fairmont hotel in beautiful Newport Beach, CA. We hope to see you in Newport Beach, July16-20, 2017

Preliminary Program

Keynote Speakers

George Georgiou, University of Texas, Austin–George Georgiou is a Professor at the University of Texas, Austin.  He received his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Cornell.  After working for over 20 years on secreted protein biogenesis in bacteria and on the development of protein expression and engineering technology, from 2009 onwards he changed his research focus to protein therapeutics.  His current research is focused on understanding human adaptive immunity (specifically, the serum, B cell and T cell immune receptor repertoires) and on the discovery and preclinical development of enzyme and antibody therapeutics. He and his students have invented one approved FDA protein therapeutic (Anthimä), AEB1102 which currently evaluated in three phase I clinical studies and two other protein drugs that are in preclinical development.

Professor Georgiou was elected to the National Academy of Engineering (2005), National Academy of Medicine (2011) and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2016).  He is the author of >240 research publications and co-inventor of 87 issued or pending US patents.  He founded GGMJD (1999; acquired by Maxygen in 2000), Aeglea Biotherapeutics (2013-Present; NASDAQ: AGLE) and Kyn Therapeutics Inc. (2015-Present) and currently serves as a Director and Chairman of the SAB for both companies.  In 2013 Georgiou was selected as one of the top 20 Translational Researchers by Nature Biotechnology.

Vilhelm A. Bohr, National Institutes of Health (NIH)–Dr. Bohr received his M.D. in 1978, Ph.D. in 1987, and D.Sc. in 1987 from the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. After training in neurology and infectious diseases at the University Hospital in Copenhagen, Dr. Bohr did a postdoctoral fellowship with Dr. Hans Klenow at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. He then worked with Dr. Philip Hanawalt at Stanford University as a research scholar from 1982-1986. In 1986 he was appointed to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) as an investigator, becoming a tenured Senior Investigator in 1988. Dr. Bohr developed a research section in DNA repair at the NCI. In 1992 he moved to the NIH to become Chief of the Laboratory of Molecular Genetics. His main contributions have been in the area of DNA repair. He has worked on many aspects of DNA damage and its processing in mammalian cells. He developed a widely used method for the analysis of DNA repair in individual genes and found that active genes are preferentially repaired. This observation was a major advance in the clarification of the tight interaction between DNA repair and transcription, a process termed transcription-coupled repair. In recent years numerous papers from his laboratory have focused on mechanisms of DNA damage processing, particularly on nucleotide excision repair and transcription coupling. A main interest now is to elucidate how these processes change in relation to aging.


Synthetic Biology and Network Design
Session Chairs: Kristala Prather, MIT and Matias Zurbriggen, University of Düsseldorf

Synthetic biology approaches are revolutionizing basic and translational research by advancing the use of engineering principles in the study and manipulation of biological systems. This session will cover a wide range of applications of synthetic biology including but not limited to: biomedicine and drug discovery (understanding / preventing / treating diseases), diagnostics, metabolic engineering and engineering of plants (crop yield and quality trait improvement). Advances in the development of new tools and strategies for fundamental research will be also represented (e.g. inducible switches in signaling studies, implementation of optogenetic tools). A central topic will be the design, construction and implementation of synthetic gene and metabolic networks in bacterial, eukaryotic and in-vitro systems, both from the theoretical and experimental perspectives. The goal is to present a representative view on the state of the art of this multidisciplinary field of research and to explore new directions and perspectives.

Session Chairs: Mike Betenbaugh, Johns Hopkins University and Sang Yup Lee, KAIST

This session on Genome Engineering will showcase recent advances in engineering microbial and mammalian genomes from methodological and application points of view. We solicit topics including, but not limited to

  • New genome engineering techniques and tools
  • Microbial genome engineering
  • Mammalian genome engineering
  • Applications of genome engineering

We encourage submitted abstracts to also highlight the challenges and proposed solutions for genome design and engineering and their applications.

Tissue and Stem Cell Engineering
Session Chairs: William Miller, Northwestern University and Lars K. Nielsen, DTU

Advances in materials science and stem cell biology are facilitating the development of customized cell therapies and tissue/organ engineering for transplantation and drug/toxicity testing. This session will focus on stem cell expansion and directed differentiation, as well as the development of functionalized natural and synthetic scaffolds that support terminal differentiation for the production of functional organs and tissues. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Reprogramming induced pluripotent stem cells to generate mature cells of diverse lineages
  • Re-cellularization of decellularized organ scaffolds
  • 3D printing of cells and scaffolds to generate organ and tissue models
  • Spatiotemporal control of scaffold compliance and functionalization to modulate cell differentiation
  • Immunomodulation to induce tolerance to transplanted organs
  • Production of platelets, red blood cells, or immune cells in culture

Biorenewables and Biofuels
Session Chairs: Ramon Gonzales, Rice University and Vassily Hatzimanikatis, EPFL
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The biological production of fuels and chemicals can help address environmental, geographical, political, and economic challenges associated with energy and manufacturing demands. This session will focus on current applications of metabolic engineering to the production of fuels and commodity and fine chemicals, with an emphasis on new enzymes, pathways, and microorganisms, as well as industrial challenges and opportunities.

Advances in Bioprocessing
Session Chairs: Thomas Ryll, Immunogen, Martin Gawlitzek, Genentech and Ashraf Aamanullah, Atyr Pharma
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This session on Advances in Bioprocessing will address progress in the bioprocessing field from small scale production such as in the personalized medicine field to industrial scale production of biopharmaceuticals or other bioprocessing products. We solicit topics including, but not limited to

  • Progress in individualized medicine related manufacturing processes
  • Advances in continuous processing for the smaller to mid-size market demands
  • Progress in industrial scale implementation of efficient production processes allowing significant reduction of cost of goods
  • Aspects of process improvements allowing successful scale translation

We encourage submitted abstracts to also highlight the challenges and proposed solutions for process implementation, scalability, robustness and desired product quality attributes.

Challenges of Miniaturization and Automation in Bioprocess Development
Session Chairs: Alan Dickson, University of Manchester and Laetitia Malphetes, UCB

Throughput quality and predictability? With an ever-increasing pipeline of potential products, a fundamental question arises in terms of how high throughput can be obtained whilst retaining reproducibility and meeting quality by design requirements within a given budget. This session will address

  • how automation can be applied to upstream and downstream processes, as well as in process analytical sciences
  • the extent to which automation can be appropriate for continuous processing
  • the potential of scale-down processes to predict manufacturing-scale processes
  • the data management and analysis challenges associated with high throughput bioprocess development.

We welcome submissions that illustrate practical experiences of integrating miniaturization and automation into industrial processes and fundamental studies of the engineering and process factors that underpin the potential success/limitations of these technologies.

Vaccine Design: From Prevention to Therapeutic Approaches
Session Chairs: Paula Alves, IBET and Ravi Kane, Georgia Tech
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Vaccines are among the most cost-effective approaches to prevent infectious disease. While the vaccine industry has matured over the last few decades, considerable work remains to be done to lower costs, improve efficacy, and address unmet medical needs. This session will focus on recent breakthroughs in vaccine technologies. Topics of interest include but are not limited to:

  • new approaches to antigen design;
  • identification and development of therapeutic candidates;
  • implementation of low-cost manufacturing processes/technologies;
  • implementation of disposable technologies and integrated bioprocesses;
  • molecular and cellular characterization of the immune response to improve existing vaccines;
  • new approaches to vaccine delivery
  • applying a holistic approach to improve global human health to vaccination by addressing specific needs for the developing world

Session Chairs: Szu-Wen Wang, University of California, Irvine and Sierin Lim, Nanyang Technological University
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The field of bionanotechnology intersects biomolecular engineering, materials science, and nanotechnology. This session will feature recent advances in the design, construction, and application of novel nanoscale materials towards applications including, but not limited to, the broad areas of health, biotechnology, energy, and electronic devices.  Examples of emerging research areas of interest include directed assemblies of nanomaterials, nanoscale biological templates, molecular-level patterning for materials synthesis, biological assemblies for catalysis, and targeted nanodelivery systems for therapeutic molecules.

Protein Design, Expression, Processing and Formulation
Session Chairs: Anne Robinson, Tulane University, Chris Oostenbrink, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna and William Bentley, University of Maryland;;

This session will highlight recent advances in the design, expression, processing and formulation of proteins, including protein display technologies, protein aggregation and related protein engineering methods. Emphasis will be placed on tools enabling the engineering of novel molecular properties or improved expression with a focus on computational models. Such models that describe stability and function of proteins may guide the design of proteins with novel structures or functions, improve expression and formulation and thus help to develop next generation therapeutics and diagnostics.

Topics of interest include but are not limited to:

  • Protein design to reduce aggregation
  • Directed evolution of proteins to improve properties or function
  • Cellular engineering strategies to improve product quality or yield

Practical Applications of Modelling: From Protein Structures to Processes
Session Chairs: Nathan E. Lewis, UCSD and Elmar Heinzle, Saarland University
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A core activity in biochemical engineering is the development of large scale bioprocesses. Thus computational modeling at multiple scales is required for the analysis, design, and optimization of biochemical production. This session will address innovative approaches of modeling at these various scales with the purpose of improved production. Types of models include but are not limited to molecular modeling for protein design, metabolic flux analysis, modeling of cell regulatory systems and bioprocess modeling. We will explore innovative tools and their application to the production of metabolites and biologic products produced in all classes of production host cells that promise progress in bridging between molecular structure and events all the way to industrial production.

Visions for Biochemical and Molecular Engineering
Session Chairs: George Georgiou, University of Texas, E. Terry Papoutsakis, University of Delaware
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All presentations in this session are BY INVITATION ONLY.

The goal of this session is to assess the future needs and directions for Biochemical & Molecular Engineering from many points of view and with the broadest possible, global perspective. The field should be logically assessed in terms of education, training and research outputs. The presenters, from both industry and academia, will be asked to address one or more of the following issues/questions.

  • (for academics) Does the current course curriculum, training opportunities and research activities in BME impacting students in your institution meet their needs and the expectations of those hiring them?
  • (for industrial presenters) Do you think the current course curricula, training opportunities and research activities in BME meet your expectations in industry?
  • Is the training and research conducted in academia in tune with industrial needs, or has it lost its relevance and practical impact?
  • Are the relationships between academia and industry satisfactory in terms of communications to address issues of common interest and pursue collaborative efforts in research and student training?
  • How well have academics and industrial scientists engaged with government bodies to make the case for funding of research activities and education/training to meet the needs of BME that would be commensurate with the impact of BME in economic activity, population health, the environment and sustainability?
  • There is an increasing disconnect between research areas that are heavily promoted by certain stakeholders, and as a result have great appeal to high impact journals and funding agencies on the one hand, and what is important to industry or to the advance of biological knowledge on the other. For example, expertise in recovery sciences, bioprocessing or quantitative pharmacology is highly valued by industry, but has been de-emphasized in graduate training.  How do we train students to have a mastery of new technologies, but at the same time to have an appreciation of the skillsets that are required for long-term success in industry and also quite possibly in academia?

Conference Organization


Wilfred Chen, University of Delaware, USA
Nicole Borth, Universität für Bodenkultur, Vienna, Austria
Stefanos Grammatikos, UCB Pharma, Belgium

Abstract Submission

Deadline for abstracts for oral presentations:              March 15, 2017
Deadline for abstracts for poster presentations:         April 15, 2017

One-page abstracts should be submitted as soon as possible and no later than the deadlines noted above.  The abstract should include both the significance of the research as well as results that will be discussed in order to allow a scientific assessment of the work by the organizers.  Please indicate the session for which you are submitting your abstract and whether the abstract should be considered for an oral or poster presentation. Only a limited number of oral presentation slots are available. Thus all submissions for oral sessions will be considered for both oral and poster presentation.

For session information, see Session Description above.

Abstracts should be submitted electronically at THIS LINK

The abstract template available at the above link must be followed for an abstract to be considered for presentation.

There will be a poster competition for Best Student Poster and Best Overall Poster.  More details will be announced.

Major Sponsors

Please click on the logo to visit the website.

Sponsorship Levels

To view the various levels of sponsorship, please click HERE.

Conference Venue

The Duke Marriott Newport Beach  (formerly the Newport Beach Fairmont) combines European traditions with California flair in one of the Golden State’s most beautiful cities.  Newport Beach is famous worldwide for its lovely beaches, picturesque coastline, and marvelous boating activities.  The modern, stylish hotel features a wide variety of amenities in each room, including high-speed internet, coffee maker, DVD and CD player, and multiple telephones.  The property itself has two on-site restaurants, The Spa Santé, a large outdoor heated pool, a fitness center, and a business center.

Activities in Newport Beach and local area:

Orange County Museum of Art         ExplorOcean

Disneyland® Park (12 miles)            Balboa Fun Zone

Corona del  Mar Beach                       Crystal Cove Park

Balboa Island Ferry                          The Wedge (Surfing)

Newport Beach Visitor Center

Address:                                                           Telephone:  +1 949 476-2001
4500 MacArthur Boulevard                                 Fax:  +1 949 476-0163
Newport Beach, California 92660                        Map and Directions


Airport Information:  The closest airport to Fairmont Newport Beach is Orange County / John Wayne Airport (SNA).  This airport is served by most major airlines with non-stop flights from over 20 cities in the USA and Mexico.  It is a five-minute drive from Fairmont Newport Beach.

Marriott Airport Shuttle–The hotel has complimentary shuttle service between the airport and the hotel.  Reservations are not required.  Call the Bell Desk for a ride to the airport or a ride from the airport to the hotel.

Rental Car–The airport has all the major car rental agencies.  There is also Hertz Local Edition on the hotel property: (949) 724-1602.

Driving–From John Wayne Airport: Turn right onto MacArthur Blvd.  Pass through the light at Birch St. and make an immediate left turn into The Fairmant Newport Beach hotel driveway.

From Points North or South—From I-405, exit onto MacArthur Blvd.  Turn left onto MacArthur Blvd.  Pass through the light at Birch St. and make an immediate left turn into The Fairmant Newport Beach hotel driveway.  (From East—Follow 91 Freeway West to the 55 Freeway South, then to I-405 South.  Follow directions above for North or South.)

Parking—Fairmont Newport Beach is a valet-only hotel with no self-parking option available.  Overnight valet parking is $32 per night.

General Information

Engineering Conferences International (ECI) is a not-for-profit, global engineering conferences program, originally established in 1962 that provides opportunities for the exploration of problems and issues of concern to engineers and scientists from many disciplines.

The format of the conference provides morning and late afternoon or evening sessions in which major presentations are made. Poster sessions will be scheduled for evening discussion as well. Available time is included during the afternoons for ad hoc meetings, informal discussions, and/or recreation. This format is designed to enhance rapport among participants and promote dialogue on the development of the meeting. We believe the conferences have been instrumental in generating ideas and disseminating information to a greater extent than is possible through more conventional forums.

All participants are expected both to attend the entire conference and to contribute actively to the discussions. The recording/photographing of lectures and presentations is forbidden. As ECI conferences take place in an informal atmosphere, casual clothing is the usual attire.

Smoking is prohibited at ECI conferences and conference functions.

Engineering Conferences International
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