Wednesday, May 13, 2015
The 2015 Biotechnology Symposium at Brookhaven National Lab featured Cornell grad student speaker Ken Yancey and tours of the most advanced synchrotron in the world. A kickoff on day one by Ken White, Manager of the Office of Educational Programs at Brookhaven National Lab; and Bryan Allinson, Vice President for Innovation and Partnerships for the Research Foundation for SUNY, set the tone for a variety of engaging presentations on novel approaches for water quality improvement, gut microflora, and winemaking. Engaging student posters on everything from the antioxidants in chaga mushrooms to new enzymes for breaking down lignin, captured the attention of industry and academic attendees alike. Arranged tours by the busloads brought the newest synchrotron to life as scientists and engineers are getting the beamlines up and running. With a ring circumference of nearly half a mile, NSLS-II will produce x-rays 10,000 times brighter than its de-commissioned younger version and will enable the study of material properties to nanoscale resolution, with up to 60 beamlines when fully operational.
Day two began with an overview of the state of biotechnology in NYC by Eva Cramer, Distinguished Service Professor of Cell Biology & Vice President for Biotechnology and Scientific Affairs at SUNY Downstate Medical Center, and President of the Downstate Biotechnology Incubator and BioBAT at the Brooklyn Army Terminal.
Additional speakers from SUNY ESF, Syracuse University, Stonybrook, Cornell, LaGuardia Community College, NYU, Michigan State, Brown, Hofstra and the host, BNL, offered three concurrent session tracks to address new discoveries in varied areas of biotechnology from biomedical and biopharmaceutical, nanobiotechnology, bioethics, biofuels, to plant transformation.