- Charles Sturt partners in National Marine Bioproducts Cooperative Research Centre
- The CRC recently secured $59 million in federal funding as part of $270 million project
- Project aims to develop marine bioproducts for health, nutrition, aquaculture, agriculture and biomaterials
Charles Sturt University researchers will help develop marine bioproducts for use in health, nutrition, aquaculture, agriculture and biomaterial applications as part of a $270 million Cooperative Research Centre.
The Marine Bioproducts CRC is a decade-long, research and development program that will transform Australia’s emerging marine bioproducts sector into a sustainable, clean and globally-competitive industry.
The successful bid for $59 million in federal funding was announced this week and will contribute to the $270 million project, to be led by Flinders University.
Charles Sturt researchers in analytical, natural products and formulation chemistry, plant and livestock health, veterinary medicine, parasitology, entomology and weed science will provide vital contributions in developing products and technology that will benefit many industries.
The Marine Bioproducts CRC has three major research themes – Sustainable Marine Resources, Innovative Bioprocessing Technologies, and Australian Marine Bioproducts.
Charles Sturt Professor of Plant Biology in the School of Agricultural and Wine Sciences and Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation member Leslie Weston (pictured) is a co-leader of program three, Australian Marine Bioproducts.
Charles Sturt will also make a contribution to program two, Innovative Bioprocessing Technologies.
Professor Weston said Charles Sturt is ready to play a key role in supporting research in the identification of marine natural products, determining their biological activity and mode of action, and organismal selection and culture.
“The opportunities for product development in the agricultural sector for crop and livestock health, feeds and nutriceuticals, and in pharmaceutics and cosmetics, are enormous,” she said.
“Charles Sturt University scientists will play an important role in future product and resource development in the Marine Bioproducts CRC, with a diverse team of researchers and the support of leading industry partners.”
Charles Sturt will contribute to program three in the following projects:
- Marine organisms as sources for agrichemical discovery and development as insecticides, fungicides and herbicides for use in crop and pasture protection
- Discovery and development of antiparasitics for animal health
- Development of marine algae for animal feeds and supplements
- Development of fine chemistry for use in a variety of agriculturally-related products
Charles Sturt is providing a contribution of $2 million, to be distributed at $200,000 per year over 10 years.
The University will also make an in-kind contribution of 15 full-time equivalent staff over 10 years, valued at $2.6 million, through access to its researchers and staff.
Australia has the world’s third-largest marine area, and Flinders University and the CRC team have assembled 49 industry partners, 12 research groups, two government organisations and five third-party participants to explore and develop marine bioproducts for use in health, nutrition, aquaculture, agriculture, and biomaterial applications.
It is predicted the Marine Bioproducts CRC will generate $8.6 billion in economic benefits and 26,470 direct and indirect jobs and serve a global market estimated to be $785 billion by 2035.