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Year 2 specialty ‘ValBioRem’

Algae, fish products, by-products and their extracts are sources of ingredients and useful molecules for different economic sectors. Their biotechnological exploitation may lead to the development of new markets and industries, particularly in the areas of food, animal feed and cosmetics. Internationally, value-added ingredients for the food, nutraceutical and health sectors represent a fast-growing market, particularly in the United States, Canada, Scandinavia and Southeast Asia. Its position in the field of exploited marine biological resources gives Brittany has a strategic role in this sector. In recent years, steps have therefore been taken to build an industrial sector for the development of marine products and by-products: (i) participation of several research teams in European projects dedicated to marine biotechnology, (ii) organization of an annual European conference on Biotechnological Exploitation of Marine Resources (September 2009-2010-2011) in Concarneau, (iii) organization by Pôle Mer Bretagne of a study mission in Norway in October 2009, etc. UBO is currently leader of a European INTERREG IVB project on this topic (www.biotecmar.eu). In this context, it seems necessary to adapt to future developments in the Breton and national economy, particularly to meet growing business demands for qualified personnel in the field of biotechnological development of marine resources.

The specialty is aimed at students with initial training in Life Sciences and basics in Biochemistry or Chemical Engineering and/or Marine Biology. The aim of the specialty is to train R&D professionals in the fundamentals of an integrated approach to the development of marine plant, animal and microbial biomass, from raw products to active molecules for the international marine ingredient market.

This specialty reinforces the training on offer in Western France, which is focused either on Process Engineering (Vocational Master /Marine Bioprocesses and Biotechnologies/, University of Nantes) or on the management of marine bio-resources, biological resources and water quality (Biotechnologies specialty, University of Southern Brittany). In the five-year plan of the University of Southern Brittany (2012-2017), the specialty will be split into two possible paths, one of which has been renamed “Biotechnology: Biomolecules, Microorganisms and Bioprocesses”.

The VALBIOREM specialty differs from these other courses in that it targets R&D jobs in the sector of marine ingredients. This “niche” specialty aims to propose solutions for companies that are developing new products from marine biomass. Thus, R&D tools such as innovation management and project management are essential to VALBIOREM.

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