Liu Research Group
Biosystems & Agricultural Engineering


Fungal Platform

The goal for this part of research is to develop a pelletized fungal fermentation platform for high value bioproducts and second generation of biofuel hydrocarbon production. Fungal pelletization allows high density cultivation which has advantages of faster production rate, high concentration of final products, and less contamination problem. Applying systems biology approaches to investigate the mechanism of fungal metabolism and developing kinetic models and reactor design will be the main components to conclude optimized systems for value-added products.

Algal Platform

The goal for this part of research includes algal strain development for fuel and chemical production in closed bioreactor system and open pond system for nutrient removal and biomass accumulation. Some algal species such as unicellular green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii are able to accumulate significant amounts of carbohydrates (mainly starch) and lipid that could be used as feedstock for biofuels and chemical production. My research group is currently working on genetic modified algae for recombinant proteins production such as enzymes, therapeutic proteins, and antibodies. Another part of algal cultivation research my research group have been involved in is selection of algal assemblages for open-pond algal culture to improve the efficiency of nutrient (N, P) removal, and utilize the algal biomass to produce fuels and chemicals.

Mixed Cutlure Platform

The goad for this part of research is to utilize the symbiotic characters of mix culture for value added chemicals and enzymes production.  Mixed  culture systems include fungi and bacteria culturing  under both aerobic and anaerobic conditions.