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ESR9: Chiamaka Belsonia Opara

Chiamaka Belsonia Opara doubles as an Environmental Biotechnologist and a Biochemist who hails from Nigeria. She obtained her MSc degree in Biotechnology from the University of the West of Scotland, United Kingdom in 2017; and her BSc degree in Applied Biochemistry from Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka, Nigeria in 2014.

The course of study on ‘Microbial Technology’ undertaken during her MSc degree inspired her interest in Environmental Biotechnology and she subsequently spent her last semester researching extensively on microbial-recovery of critical resource materials (CRMs) from waste printed circuit boards (PCBs). Her research interests include Biomining, Bioleaching, Biosorption, Bioremediation and Biosurfactants.

Chiamaka currently works as an EU researcher for the SULTAN project in the biotechnology group of the prestigious Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) Germany; and at the same time pursuing a doctorate (PhD) degree at Technische Universität Bergakademie Freiberg (TU BAF), Germany. As the ESR9 of the MSCA-ETN SULTAN project, Chiamaka’s research is focused on developing innovative bioleaching approaches for the extraction of valuable and hazardous elements from sulfidic tailings. Her goal is to develop alternative bioleaching methods that can be used to treat tailings at neutral to alkaline conditions.

In her leisure, she enjoys reading about everything, seeing historical movies and travelling to explore nature and different cultures.

Blog posts:

Functional foods

Functional foods are foods or food ingredients that provide health benefits beyond the basic nutrition, as a result of physiologically active food components. A functional food boosts optimal health, advances the immune system and can help prevent chronic diseases.

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