Department of Biochemistry

Staff:

  • Head of the Department:
    • Agnieszka Mrozik, PhD, DSc
  • Academic Teachers:
    • Professor Sylwia Łabużek (Emeritus Professor);
    • Katarzyna Hupert-Kocurek PhD, DSc
    • Danuta Wojcieszyńska, PhD, DSc
    • Urszula Guzik, PhD, DSc
    • Izabela Greń, PhD
    • Agnieszka Nowak, PhD
    • Andrzej Woźnica, PhD
    • Daniel Wasilkowski, PhD
    • Jolanta Pająk, PhD
    • Bożena Nowak, PhD
  • Technical Staff:
    • Barbara Wendreńska
    • Mariola Machera
    • Iwona Knopik
    • Grażyna Jochymczyk

Main field of research:

  • Microbial transformation and degradation of recalcitrant and/or hazardous xenobiotics e.g. aromatic compounds, anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), plastics:
    • isolation of bacterial and fungal strains and design of mixed population of microorganisms able to decompose these compounds;
    • determination of genetic and biochemical mechanisms of degradation;
    • identification of key enzymes involved in the biodegradation pathways;
    • optimization of process parameters for improvement of degradation efficiency:
      • degradation under co-metabolic conditions;
      • removal of xenobiotics by free and immobilized bacterial strains;
      • the influence of abiotic and biotic factors;
  • Application of mutagenesis as a tool for an improvement of key enzymes engaged in aromatic ring fission for industrial and environmental purposes;
  • Bioremediation and phytoremediation of polluted environments:
    • interactions between bacteria-bacteria, bacteria-environment, bacteria-plant;
    • bacterial compounds promoting plant growth;
    • identification of genes determining ability of microorganisms to colonize plants;
    • changes in structural and functional (bio)diversity of microbial communities as a result of contamination and remediation;
    • construction of bacterial consortia for bioaugmentation of polluted environments;
    • application of municipal and industrial organic waste products for assisted bioremediation;
    • formulation of immobilized microorganisms able to degrade xenobiotics in wastewater treatment plants;
  • Study on susceptibility of various plastic compositions to degradation in different environments;
  • Bacterial consortia as bioindicator of water quality:
    • control of bacterial metabolic processes;
    • construction of biosensing systems;
  • Water environment management.

Unique resources of the Department:

  • Own collection of fungal and bacterial strains, with high capability of degrading different xenobiotics, isolated from polluted environments.

External services:

  • Analysis of selected aromatic compounds in environmental samples;
  • Detection of selected anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) in environmental samples;
  • Evaluation of environments based on microbial and biochemical assays;
  • Improving of enzymes properties through mutagenesis;
  • Testing of susceptibility or resistance of plastics to various microorganisms;
  • Determination of release ratio of antibacterial/antifungal substances from polymers.

For students:

  • Erasmus +:
    • Environmental biotechnology
    • Structural Biochemistry
  • PhD studies on Advanced methods in biotechnology and biodiversity:
    • Microorganisms in the environment and their use in biotechnology.