Project

Ying Zheng

Name & affiliation
Ying Zheng, Molecular Ecology, Laboratory of Microbiology, Wageningen University

Function
PhD candidate

Education
2007-2011, BS Bioengineering, Northwest A&F University, China
2010-2013, MS Environmental Science, Northwest A&F University, China
2013-present, PhD student, Microbiology, Wageningen University, The Netherlands

Research
Topic 1:
Organohalide respiring bacteria (OHRB) are found to coexist with different non-dechlorinating microorganisms in our environment, such as fermenters, acetogens, and methanogens. The non-dechlorinating microbial community  play an important role in effective bioremediation of chlorinated pollutants by supplying OHRB with energy and carbon sources, growth factors (e.g., vitamins) or other metabolic intermediates. This study aims at revealing microbial interplays in defined co- and tri-culture of metabolically versatile OHRB strains with syntrophic non-chlorinating microbes known to fulfil the nutritional requirements or OHRB. (Meta)Transcriptomics and (meta)proteomics will be also used to analyse gene expression patterns as well as associated protein profiles of co- and tri-culture to shed light on underlying mechanisms of interactions between the OHRB and the supporting non-dechlorinating community members. The metabolites will be analysed with high-performance liquid chromatograph (HPLC) or gas chromatographic (GC).
Topic 2:
Biodiesel, is a renewable, environmentally friendly and biodegradable fuel. Biodiesel from different origins has proven to be readily biodegradable, however, the identity and functional activities of these biodegrading microbes are still unclear. Thus, our study focus on exploring the microbial community and function of biodiesel degrading consortia. To this end, we will enrich microbial consortia capable of degrading biodiesel main components i.e. methyl oleate or methyl palmitate. Both compositional and functional diversity of these enrichment cultures will be investigated by using different chemical and molecular analysis, such as HPLC, GC, qPCR, and combined meta-omics analysis.

Contact
Ying1.zheng@wur.nl