Metabolic engineering

​My research involves the rational design of microbial cell factories for the production of valuable chemical compounds. To this task, I develop model-based tools for accelerating the generation of super microbial producers.

​Biotechnology Engineer (M. Sc.) from the Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile (PUC), currently undergoing a PhD in Systems Biology at the University of Queensland. Professional experience includes work as Project and Biochtechnology Engineer at the Laboratory of Biotechnology (PUC), Fraunhofer Chile Research Foundation and DITUC SA. Major awards include best Master Thesis 2013 in Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering mention (PUC), and Top Master Graduate student 2013 in Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering mention (PUC).


​My collaborations include Dr. Christopher Drovandi and Prof. Anthony Pettitt from the School of Applied Mathematics and Statistics at QUT

Key Publications

Saa P, Nielsen L (2016) Construction of feasible and accurate kinetic models of metabolism: A Bayesian approach. Scientific Reports 6: 29635.

Saa P, Nielsen L (2016) ll-ACHRB: a scalable algorithm for sampling the feasible solution space of metabolic networks. Bioinformatics 32(15): 2330–2337.

Saa P, Nielsen L (2015) A general framework for thermodynamically consistent parameterization and efficient sampling of metabolic reactions. PLOS Computational Biology 11(4): e1004195.

Dal’Molin C, Quek L, Saa P, Nielsen L (2015) A multi-tissue genome-scale metabolic modelling for the analysis of whole plant systems. Frontiers in Plant Science 6: 4.

Saa P, Moenne I, Pérez-Correa R, Agosin E (2012) Modeling oxygen dissolution and biological uptake during pulse oxygen additions in oenological fermentations. Bioprocess and Biosystems Engineering 35(7): 1167-1178.


My PhD has been funded by ​IPRS, UQ Centennial and BECAS CHILE Scholarship programs.