European Master in Biological and Chemical Engineering for a Sustainable Bioeconomy

Trip to Toulouse (intake 1 - AgroParisTech)

After three months spent in Paris for their AgroParisTech 3rd semester, the eight Bioceb students of Track 1 travelled to Toulouse, in the south of France, to discover the company Pierre Fabre and Toulouse Biotechnology Institute (TBI).

Pierre Fabre is a pharmaceutic company pioneer in the field of dermo-cosmetics. Its expertise in skin care dates back to 1974 and is based on knowledge of the epidermis with particular focus on sun protection, skin aging and the microbiota. Its research and innovation activities are driven by a sustainable development policy aiming at delivering safe and effective products while respecting the environment. The students were welcomed on the site of Langlade where they benefited from a general presentation of the Group by the director of Pierre Fabre dermo-cosmetic R&D, Xavier Ormancey. The opportunity for them to hear more about brands such as Avène, Ducray, Aderma or Klorane. They discovered that the company implemented a green impact index combining criteria related to environment and social responsibility. After this presentation, the visit focused on plant biotechnologies with the supervision of Adrien Cousy, project leader in plant cell culture at the division of Applied Research. The students were given the opportunity to present the result of the work they carried out in groups during the course “Specialized metabolites” at AgroParisTech. Through highly professional exchanges, they could discuss the biotech pathways they had designed for the production of given biologically active compounds. The visit through the labs were of particular interest for these students specialized in Biomass engineering for bioeconomy. Indeed, they could get concrete examples of plant cell culture application to the production of skin-car ingredients. Among them, the sustainable production of an extract enriched in a triterpene with anti-inflammatory properties, celastrol. The visit ended with informal discussions during a Christmas lunch gathering all the participants.

The Bioceb Track 1 students with Stéphanie Baumberger, Jeanne Beyrand and the Pierre Fabre dermo-cosmetic R&D director, Xavier Ormancey. (17th December 2021, Langlade).

Toulouse Biotechnology Institute
is a laboratory for fundamental and applied research in the field of biotechnologies, located on the campus of the “Institut National des Sciences Appliquées” (INSA). TBI is under the joint supervision of three research and high education organizations, including INRAE, one of the Bioceb associated partners. The visit organized by Claire Dumon, Research Director at the Biocatalysis department, started with a presentation of TBI’s activities by its director, Gilles Truan, and was followed by the discovery of different labs focusing on enzyme engineering and screening (ICEO), bioprocesses (FAMETech), and synthetic biology. It was closely related to the knowledge acquired by the students during their Bioceb third semester and was at the very center of interest of some students now starting their MSc thesis in this field. Thanks to this visit, they got particular awareness of the performance of high throughput strategies. During the second part of the visit, the students discovered Toulouse White Biotechnology (TWB), a demonstrator born in 2010 to ensure the transfer of knowledge from basic research to industry. They had the opportunity to see the highly automatized and performant equipment’s of the TWB Bioprocess and Strain Engineering platforms. Moreover, they had the chance to discuss with the founders of Sweetech, hosted by TBI to facilitate the launching of their start-up. This visit was very useful to take awareness of innovation transfer, industrial properties and scale-up problematics.

The Bioceb Track 1 students at Toulouse Biotechnology Institute. (16th December 2021, Toulouse).

- Updated February 2022 -