Mélanie Auffan, Cerege Aix en Provence, France

Title: Indoor mesocosms: an integrated approach to assess the environmental risks of nanomaterials

Melanie Auffan is a CNRS research scientist at the CEREGE (European Geosciences Center) in Aix en Provence (France). She is member of the CEINT Centre for the Environmental Implications of Nanotechnology steering committee and she is part of the Labex SERENADE Safer Ecodesign Research and Education applied to NAnomaterial Development. Her research addresses the physico-chemical properties and surface reactivity of nanoparticles in contact with living organisms.

Rizlan Bernier-Latmani, EPF Lausanne, Switzerland

Title: Role of microbial processes in the environmental fate of uranium

Prof. Rizlan Bernier-Latmani is the head of the environmental microbiology laboratory at EPFL, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne. Her work is focused on microbial processes transforming contaminant trace elements such as uranium and arsenic. Her research bridges the molecular scale with spectroscopic techniques, the microbe scale with ‘omic' tools, and the meter scale with field investigations. The overall aim of the investigations is to obtain a fundamental understanding of contaminant biological and abiotic transformations in order to develop suitable remediation approaches. Additionally, she is interested in the role of microbes in biogeochemical cycling in the deep subsurface.

Claudia Blindauer, University of Warwick, UK

Title: Native and adventitious interactions of essential and toxic metal ions with proteins: experimental and theoretical „-omics“ approaches

Claudia Blindauer is an Associate Professor (Reader) in Chemistry at the University of Warwick, UK. Her research concerns structure and dynamics of proteins involved in metal – in particular zinc – homeostasis. Recent work has focused on bioinformatics (genome mining and homology modelling), bioanalytical (metallomics and metalloproteomics) and biophysical (NMR spectroscopy and mass spectrometry) studies of protein-metal interactions in marine cyanobacteria.

Erick Boy, HarvestPlus, USA

Title: Advances and challenges in biofortification

Erick manages the HarvestPlus nutrition research program, which encompasses food science and epidemiologic studies required to assess the consumption, bioavailability and efficacy of biofortified crops in Sub Saharan Africa and South Asia. He encourages and supports research on zinc status indicators and stable isotopic studies to assess the bioavailability and efficacy of crops delivering iron, zinc or provitamin-A carotenoids. Research interests: the fraction of anemia attributable to iron deficiency globally and regionally, the nutritional impact of a multiple biofortified foods intervention, and the effectiveness of biofortified beans (P vulgaris) in the dry corridor of Guatemala, among others.

Jian Feng Ma, Okayama University, Japan

Title: Genes controlling cadmium and arsenic accumulation in rice

Professor at Institute of Plant Science and Resources, Okayama University, Japan. Major interests: Plant transporter identification of minerals including essential, beneficial and toxic minerals Published more than 200 papers in international journals including Nature, Nature Communications, Nature Plants, PNAS, Plant Cell, Plant Journal. etc. Received JSPS Prizes and Japan Academy Medals in 2006, Awards of Japanese Society of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition in 2007, and Kihara Award in 2012. Highly Cited Researcher 2015 and 2016, Top author of American Society of Plant Biologists (ASBP)Associate Editor of Functional Plant Biology and Section Editor of Plant and Soil.

Steve McGrath, Rothamsted Research, UK

Title: Translation of biogeochemical TE research into environmental regulations

Professor Steve McGrath is a Soil and Crop Scientist at Rothamsted Research in Harpenden and is Head of the Department of Sustainable Soils and Grassland Systems. He has more than 30 years’ experience researching the biogeochemistry of trace elements in soils and crops. He is an Honorary Professor in the School of Biosciences, University of Nottingham. His honours include Thomson-Reuters ISI Highly Cited Scientist in Agricultural Science, and the Royal Agricultural Society’s Research Medal. Many of his findings have practical applications which improve the quality of life and he has created impact through interaction with farming groups and legislators worldwide.

Edward Tipping, Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, UK

Title: Metal speciation modelling from the laboratory to the field to the organism and toxicity

I have been an environmental chemist for nearly 40 years (I’m a bit tired), initially on colloids, then proton and metal binding by organic matter, the ecotoxicology of metals, and the biogeochemical cycles of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus in soils and waters. Mostly I work by developing models designed for application to real-world conditions. Current and recent projects include long-term, large-scale modelling of macronutrients in Britain, now being extended to India, the turnover and element stoichiometry of soil organic matter, UV-visible spectroscopy of dissolved organic matter, and cation toxicity in waters and soils.

Lenny Winkel, ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Title: Biogeochemical cycling of selenium

Prof. Lenny Winkel is an environmental geochemist at ETH Zurich and Eawag, the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology. Her research focuses on biogeochemical trace element cycling from molecular to global scales. In her research, Prof. Winkel aims at achieving a better understanding of the environmental pathways and biogeochemical cycling of trace elements with important health impacts, such as selenium and arsenic. A further aim is to predict broad-scale environmental trace element distributions. To achieve these goals, Prof. Winkel and her research group link geochemical processes to biological and climatic processes using innovative and interdisciplinary approaches.