Pakrasi is director of the International Center for Advanced Renewable Energy and Sustainability (I-CARES). He conducts his research in the areas of systems biology, photosynthesis, and metal homeostasis. He also directs two large-scale multiinstitutional Systems Biology projects, NSF-FIBR and PNNL Grand Challenge. Pakrasi is deeply engaged in bridging research interests in Physical and Biological Sciences.
Three Washington University in St. Louis scientists studied the great granddaddy of all photosynthetic organisms — a strain of cyanobacteria — to develop the first experimental map of that organism’s water world.
The U.S. Department of Energy has awarded David Fike, PhD, associate professor of earth and planetary sciences, $2.4 million to adapt a powerful chemical microscope called the 7F-GEO SIMS for biological samples. The updated instrument’s ability to map the chemistry inside cells will boost research on microbes that are promising candidates for biofuel or bioenergy production.
The government of India’s Department of Biotechnology,
Indian corporate leaders and Washington University in St. Louis have
invested $2.5 million to launch the Indo-U.S. Advanced Bioenergy
Consortium for Second Generation Biofuels (IUABC). The goal of the center is to increase biomass yield in
plants and algae, enabling downstream commercial development for
cost-effective, efficient and environmentally sustainable production of
Winning teams in the I-CARES Student Competition displayed their sustainability projects on the Danforth Campus of Washington University in St. Louis last week. The annual competition asks students to propose a physical installation in the area of climate change, renewable energy or sustainable design.
Much of modern agriculture relies on biologically
available nitrogenous compounds (called “fixed” nitrogen) made by an
industrial process developed by German chemist Fritz Haber in 1909. Himadri Pakrasi, PhD, a scientist at Washington University in St. Louis, thinks it should be possible to design a better
nitrogen-fixing system. His idea is to put the apparatus for fixing
nitrogen in plant cells, the same cells that hold the apparatus for
capturing the energy in sunlight. The National Science Foundation just awarded Pakrasi and his team $3.87 million to explore this idea further.