Knowledge atlas Science

Group for Eco-Biotechnology and Drug Development (IMGGE)

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Group for Eco-Biotechnology and Drug Development – Laboratory for Molecular Genetics and Ecology of Microorganisms of the Institute of Molecular Genetics and Genetic Engineering (IMGGE) - University of Belgrade, focuses on the establishment of novel eco-sustainable processes designed to develop new materials from various microbial metabolites occurring in diverse conditions. Application of their research is of a wide range – from upcycling plastic waste to combating antibiotic resistant pathogens and finding alternatives to synthetic dyes.

Name of Field in the local language
Grupa za Bio-ekotehnologiju i razvoj lekova
Area of Expertise
molecular biology, fermentation technology, microbial strain, enzyme engineering, and development of sustainable and greener solutions to synthesis of valuable molecules and biomaterials
Scientists / Scientific team
Jasmina Nikodinović Runić – head of the group, Tatjana Ilić-Tomić, Sandra Vojnović – full research professors, Sanja Jeremić – associate research professor, Jelena Lazić, Jelena Milovanović, Dušan Milivojević, Milica Ćirić, Sanja Škaro Bogojević, Vuk Filipović, Marijana Ponjavić, Ivana Aleksić – assistant research professors, Brana Pantelić, Milena Stevanović, Vukašin Janković – research assistants, Marija Nenadović, Lena Pantelić – junior research assistants.
Location, Institution, Website
Institute for Molecular Genetics and Genetic Engineering (IMGGE), Vojvode Stepe 444a, 11042 Belgrade, Website: Link to website
Contact, +381(0)648044093
Type of Institution
Research Institute
Years of Active working in the Field

Laboratory and research space
Several research areas approx. 15 m2 each,The institute has 6 functional units: 1) PCR and sequencing unit; 2) Flow cytometry unit; 3) Microscopy unit; 4) Chromatography unit; 5) Zebrafish unit; 6) Fully-equipped cell culture sterile rooms for work with a) human/animal cell lines, b) pathogen bacteria, and c) plants.
Materials and equipment
Bioreactor EDF-5.4_1 (Biotehniskais centrs, Latvia), Sistem Duetz (EnzyScreen BV, The Netherlands), Liofilizer Alpha 1-2 LDplus (Martin Christ, Gefriertrocknungsanlagen GmbH, Germany), Vacuum rotary evaporator BÜCHI Rotavapor R-300 (BÜCHI Labortechnik AG, Switzerland), Gravitational column chromatography (Sigma Aldrich, Germany), High-performance liquid chromatography – mass spectometry (HPLC–MS) Thermo Scientific Ultimate 3000 with UV detector UltiMate 3000 DAD and mass detector TSK Fortis with OptaMak NG Source, OPTON-30426 SV (Thermo Scientific, USA).
Technology / Tools / Machines
Equipment per unit: 1) 3130 Genetic Analyzer, 7500 Real Time PCR System, 7900HT Fast Real Time PCR System (Applied Biosystems), NG sequencer – MiSeq (Illumina); 4-capillary sequencer; 2) flow cytometer with cell sorter; 3) confocal laser scanning microscope with in vivo imaging system, fluorescence microscope, phase contrast microscopes; 4) HPLC, FPLC; 5) centrifuges, ultracentrifuge, deep freezers -80° C, spectrophotometers, BioDoc analyser system, constant temperature rooms with shakers, electrophoresis systems (DGGE and 2-D), ultrasonic system, cryostat, biosafety level 2 flow laminar chambers, electroporation system, containers for liquid nitrogen, autoclaves, safety cabinets for chemicals, respirometer and fermenter.
Research Methods / Processes
Synthetic biology (gene cloning, protein expression, development of biotechnologically relevant enzymes and directed evolution), Exploring biomaterials, biofilms, biosensors, biopigments, biosurfactants, bioremediation, bioeconomy, Bacterial secondary metabolites manipulation: cultivation, extraction, purification, characterization, derivatisation using organic chemistry and biocatalysis, Drug development, structural optimizations and activity enhancements of bioactive molecules, invitro bioactivity assessment, host-pathogen interactions, in vivo testing (nematode Caenorhabditis elegans and zebrafish Danio rerio model systems).
Members / Employees
Education of the Scientist
Molecular biology, microbiology, molecular genetics, biochemistry, organic chemistry

Most impactful project
BioECOLogics – Value-added biologics through eco-sustainable routes, Bio Innovation of a Circular Economy for Plastics (BioICEP), Eco conversion of lower grade PET and mixed recalcitrant PET plastic waste into high performing biopolymers (EcoPlastiC), Functionalization of biopolymers, De-novo sequencing of 82 selected strains with biomass-degrading and bioremediation potential, Tiny creatures reign in our kitchen drain, Science on the move - from lab to streets & school (ScienceSCool), Development of a two-step biotechnological process for improved PLA biodegradation in the environment, BIOTON-bio-pigments obtained from waste for use in the paint and varnish industry, NEKA DRUGA MESTA (SOME OTHER PLACES).
Grant or funding information
Science Fund of the Republic of Serbia, Ministry of Science, Technological Development and Innovation of the Republic of Serbia, European Commission, EU, EIC, UNDP

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Group for Eco-Biotechnology and Drug Development of the Institute of Molecular Genetics and Genetic Engineering places the “from waste to value by microorganisms” concept at the core of all their activities, research, and projects.
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Supported by
  • Ministarstvo kulture