Title:  Inspired by Nature: Separation of Lanthanides and Actinides Using Bacteria and their Biomolecules

 Speaker:  Prof. Lena J. Daumann, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Germany

Abstract: Lanthanides (Ln) are essential ingredients sprinkled in a multitude of applications in our daily life, especially important for sustainable and clean energy applications. However, owing to their chemical similarity, separation of Ln is tedious. In the past decade, the role of Ln for many bacteria has been firmly established, and bacteria that take up Ln and use them in the active sites of quinone-dependent alcohol dehydrogenases have been extensively studied. An overview on the history of this young field will be presented. 

From the Ln-utilizing bacteria, proteins and small chelators with remarkable selectivity and affinity for lanthanides, have been identified. This lecture will give an overview into bioinspired lanthanide and actinide separation methods using bacteria, their Ln-binding proteins or bioinspired small chelators. In addition, evidence will be presented that the actinides americium and curium can replace the essential Ln-elements in lanthanide-dependent bacterial metabolism, suggesting a potential biological role for these radioactive elements. Finally a glimpse into the possible recycling applications will be given.

About School research seminars

Seminars cover all aspects of chemistry and molecular biosciences and are delivered by visiting national and international academics. PhD completion seminars are also incorporated into the program.

Seminars are usually held in person and via zoom. All are welcome to attend.  



AIBN Seminar Room