Announcing 16 projects to accelerate bioindustrial manufacturing in the U.S.

BioMADE, the Bioindustrial Manufacturing and Design Ecosystem, is awarding $5.8 million in federal funds to 16 innovative projects aimed at accelerating bioindustrial manufacturing knowledge, capabilities, and workforce in the U.S. These projects will leverage an additional $6.3 million in non-federal cost share, providing a significant boost to the ecosystem. By harnessing the power of biology, bioindustrial technologies will help create and domestically source the manufactured goods that Americans use every day. These projects will create chemicals such as acrylic acid – used in everything from diapers to mobile phones – and succinic acid, which is used in polyesters. 

“We’re extremely pleased to announce these projects, which represent all areas of our mission,” said Douglas Friedman, BioMADE CEO. “These cutting-edge projects will create new bio-based chemicals, demonstrate the feasibility and benefits of bioindustrial manufacturing, enhance the ability of the biomanufacturing community to work together, and train the workforce of the future.”  

Bioindustrial manufacturing uses living organisms such as bacteria, yeast, and algae, to make new products or replacements for current products that are more sustainable and environmentally friendly than current processes. By propelling new biotechnology products from the lab to the commercial market, BioMADE and its members strengthen American competitiveness and create a more robust and resilient supply chain. BioMADE is also building a diverse and globally competitive STEM workforce to ensure the workforce is prepared and ready to fill new jobs. 

“These projects include partners from large corporate industries, start-ups, universities, community colleges, and non-profit organizations, all of whom are dedicated to advancing bioindustrial manufacturing in the U.S.,” added Friedman. “The partnerships created through these projects highlight how BioMADE brings together a diverse, growing industry to reach shared goals.”  

Launched in 2021, BioMADE is a Manufacturing Innovation Institute sponsored by the U.S. Department of Defense. It is also a member of Manufacturing USA®, a national network created to secure U.S. global leadership in advanced manufacturing through large-scale public-private collaboration on technology, supply chain, and education and workforce development. Additional projects may periodically be announced in the future. Read more about the projects below and learn more about BioMADE by visiting biomade.org

Technology & Innovation Projects 

9 projects | $4.1 million federal funds | $4.2 million non-federal cost share 

  • Accumulation of a Direct Precursor to Acrylic Acid from Dairy Waste Fermentation: This project will leverage a previously un-engineered bacterium that consumes several unrefined byproducts from the dairy industry to generate a cheap and sustainable alternative to displace petroleum-based propylene as the feedstock used to make acrylic acid. Member team: MicroByre
  • Making Circular Economy Composites by Combining a Safer, Bio-Based Alternative to Carbon Black Filler Powder with Plant-Based Polymers: This project will explore combining a safer, bio-based alternative to carbon black filler powder with polymers made by the enzymatic epoxidation of a soybean oil and linseed oil-based bio-resin, in order to create thermoset hybrid bio-composites. Member team: Agri-Tech, University of Akron School of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering 
  • Continuous Production of Glucaric Acid: This project aims to advance the current state of continuous fermentation technology to reap the significant technical and economic advantages it provides over batch fermentation processes for bioindustrial manufacturing processes. Member team: Kalion
  • Magnetosome Compositions, Scale-up, Processing, and Fabrication When Compared to Fe-O Type: This project will explore the production of novel magnetic nanoparticles that have been doped with various transition metals under a continuous chemostat production system to allow for physically and biologically tailored nanoparticles to use for application testing. Member team: Superbrewed Food, Lockheed Martin
  • Manufacturing of Feed Additive Recombinant Probiotic Products for Improved Poultry Growth: This project will gain insight into fermentation and downstream processing for ProAspis, a safe, genetically modified bacteria that can release antimicrobial peptides to preferentially kill pathogens in chickens and help farmers raise clean animal protein. Member team: General Probiotics
  • New Technologies for Industrial Production of Succinic Acid: The goal of this project is to develop new innovative technologies and strategies for large-scale fermentative production of succinic acid and demonstrate the feasibility of bioindustrial manufacturing of succinic acid on a pilot-scale. Member team: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • De-Risking Toxic Product Production: This project aims to demonstrate a real time in situ product-removal approach to enhance microbe-inhibitory product formation at pilot scale. Member team: Amyris
  • Scalable AI Assisted Strain Engineering and Optimization: This project will develop open data exchange standards for fermentation, and then demonstrate their utility for optimizing bioproduction by using them to aggregate process data from multiple sites for machine learning. Member team: TeselaGen, MicroByre
  • Stress Testing Supply Chains and their Ecosystems for Levels of Trust, Security, Resilience, Agility, and Competitiveness: This project will design a simulation platform to stress test end-to-end bioindustrial manufacturing facilities and supply chains resiliency over multiple risks. Member team: Georgia Institute of Technology

Education & Workforce Development Projects 

7 projects | $1.7 million federal funds | $2.1 million non-federal cost share 

  • ALAKA‘I: Aloha Life-Science Academy: Knowledge Advancing Industry: This project will establish an academy to develop industry-relevant training for professionals in the bioeconomy, including operators, technicians, scientists, managers, policy makers, regulators, investors, and advocates, in addition to interested students. Member team: University of Hawai‘i, Hilo, National Corn-to-Ethanol Research Center at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, Solano Biotech Consulting  
  • Bioreactor Education, Setup, and Training: This project will develop a cost-effective DIY bioreactor with all the functionality of a commercially available, far more expensive bioreactor in order to increase student access to bioindustrial manufacturing training and equipment. Member team: University of Georgia, Albany State University 
  • Building BioMADE Awareness: The STEMconnector Ecosystem Approach: This project will raise awareness of bioindustrial manufacturing, both as a career path and for the benefits it can bring to the nation. Member team: STEMconnector, University of California, Davis  
  • Early Exposure: Biomanufacturing in the University of Texas Freshman Research Initiative: This project will introduce students to biomanufacturing during their freshman year of college, generating interest and exposing them to future job opportunities.  Member team: University of Texas, Austin and Austin Community College 
  • Educating the Current and Future Bioindustrial Workforce: Molecular Biology, Bioprocessing Fundamentals, and Responsible Innovation: Three new courses covering several aspects of bioindustrial manufacturing will help students and workers develop the experience and expertise they need to be effective and successful in the workforce.  Member team: North Carolina State University 
  • Nanobiotechnology to Inspire the Next Generation of the Skilled Biomanufacturing Workforce: This program will inspire students to learn about leveraging microbes in bioindustrial manufacturing by putting cutting-edge nanobiotechnologies like hand-held DNA sequencers and scanning electron microscopes into classrooms. Member team: University of North Carolina, Greensboro, Forsyth Technical Community College, Genome Insights, Soldier to Agriculture Program at North Carolina State University 
  • Regional Partnerships for Training the Biomanufacturing Workforce in Worcester, MA: This project will launch a credit-bearing, industry-informed after-school program focused on training students for biomanufacturing careers, helping build relationships between students and local industries. Member team: BioBuilder, Worcester Public Schools, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Twist Bioscience 

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