AIBN to host BioNano leaders at international conference in 2017

6 Dec 2016

The University of Queensland’s Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnologywill host leading scientists from across the world at the International Conference on BioNano Innovation (ICBNI) in September next year.

Conference co-chair Professor Andrew Whittakersaid the research presented at the three day conference in Brisbane will be applied and translational in nature, making it of interest to diverse audiences.

“The program is divided into the areas of nanomedicine, stem cells, energy and the environment, industrial biotechnology, biologics, and the fundamental science of bioengineering and nanotechnology,” Professor Whittaker said.

These fields are experiencing significant commercial growth worldwide, making the conference a valuable and timely opportunity for researchers and industry alike to exchange ideas. The global biotechnology market alone is estimated to have doubled in the last six years, and will exceed US$400 billion by the end of 2017.

Previous ICBNI conferences held in Australia have hosted around 500 delegates. Next year’s event promises to attract large audiences once again, with a number of prominent speakers, including a Nobel laureate, already confirmed:

  • Professor Elizabeth Blackburn: Salk Institute. A pioneering molecular biologist, and 2009 Nobel laureate in Physiology or Medicine for the discovery of how chromosomes are protected by telomeres and the enzyme telomerase.


  • Professor Ian Frazer: The University of Queensland. Co-inventor of the HPV vaccine against cervical cancer marketed as Gardasil and Cervarix, and founding CEO and Director of Research of the Translational Research Institute.
  • Professor Melissa Little: Murdoch Childrens Research Institute. An internationally recognised researcher working on the systems biology of kidney development and regenerative kidney therapies.

Polymer science:

  • Professor Heather Maynard: University of California, Los Angeles. A leader in the development of new strategies to synthesise protein-polymer conjugates and polymeric drugs.
  • Professor Sam Stupp: Northwestern University. Director, of the Simpson Querrey Institute for BioNanotechnology, and a trailblazing scientist in the field of peptide-based molecules and polymer chemistry.

Nanomaterials for energy:

  • Professor Yi Cui: Stanford University. A researcher at the forefront of nanocrystal and nanowire synthesis and self-assembly, and electron transfer and transport in nanomaterials for use in electronic devices and nanobiotechnology.

Environmental nanoscience:

  • Professor Geraldine Richmond: University of Oregon. A world leader in using laser spectroscopy and computational methods to understand surface states of water, semiconductors and minerals.

Fellow conference co-chair Professor Stephen Mahler said the extensive conference program will appeal to academia, industry and government due to the broad range of delegates who will present and attend.

“Our focus on translational science will ensure the conference is relevant and accessible not only to lab-based scientists and academics, but also to practitioners, policymakers, venture capitalists, and trademark and patent lawyers,” Professor Mahler said.

“We have been very active and successful in confirming high calibre speakers who are international leaders in their fields, and we are continuing to add distinguished speakers to our program as the event gets closer.”

AIBN's hosting of this premier international conference reflects the Institute’s commitment to incubate translational science, by bringing the brightest minds together to exchange ideas and foster scientific collaborations.

ICBNI runs from 24-27 September 2017 at UQ's Advanced Engineering Building, with registration and abstract submission now open. Full conference details are available at

Media: Darius Koreis,, +61 7 3346 3962, +61 427 148 18.