Octavio Perez-Garcia


PhD Student


Phone: 09-3737599 x89555

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

20 Symonds St. Auckland. New Zealand. Room 401 4.613

Email: rper079@aucklanduni.ac.nz



Environmental Biotechnology

Bioprocesses of wastewater treatment and biofuel production

Systems Biology



-Associated researcher. Microalgae biotechnology. Universidad Iberoamericana. Mexico-Netherlands

-Master in Science. Major in Biotechnology.  Mexican Ministry of Science and Technology. CIBNOR-CONACyT. Mexico.

-Bachelor in Biology. University of Guadalajara. Mexico.



Metabolic network modeling of activated sludge processes.

My research aims to examine the applicability of metabolic network modeling, metabolomics and fluxomics to quantify nitrogen and carbon emissions from activated sludge processes.

Models based in metabolic networks provide a powerful platform to interpret data and generate hypothesis. Their application as predictive tool has proved their utility to analyze and optimize microbial metabolism and bioprocesses mainly in the field of production of medical and fermentation compounds. However metabolic network modeling, metabolomics and fluxomics profiling has not being applied to explain and optimize environmental biotechnology processes including wastewater biotreatment. These processes have the peculiarity to be high open systems and that the catalytic activity is provided by microbial communities instead of single species populations. Due this facts, the use of the mentioned analysis techniques to environmental biotechnology confront unsolved but promising challenges.

As case of study the research is particularly focus in the phenomenon of nitrogen gaseous emissions (NO and N2O) from activated sludge performing nitrification, denitrification and partial nitrification processes. Despite of genes, enzymes, and pathways of nitrogen respiration and gas production are well established, it is a lacking knowledge of quantitative flux distribution of the emission pathways and their effect over the rest of the cell physiology.

This research has a synergistic approach between in silico modeling and experimental work. We are reconstructing a metabolic network based in the metabolism of microbial communities of activated sludge, in this way we are building a synthetic metabolic network. The reconstruction is based in stoichiometric reactions of ecological functional microbial groups of activated sludge. In parallel wet experiments are being conducted to establish experimentally metabolome and fluxome profiles of activated sludge communities of lab scale reactors.

The outcome of the research will be a metabolic network model able to predict fluxes of nitrogen and carbon metabolic pathways involve in activated sludge performance. With this model we expect to provide an expansible and flexible platform to interpret and predict metabolic performance in wastewater treatment experiments.



Click for downloadingPerez-Garcia, O., Escalante F.M.E., de-Bashan, L.E., Bashan, Y. (2011). Heterotrophic cultures of microalgae: metabolism and potential products. Water Research 45: 11-36.

Click for downloadingPerez-Garcia, O., Bashan, Y., Puente, M.E.  (2011). Organic carbon supplementation of municipal wastewater is essential for heterotrophic growth and removing ammonium by the microalga Chlorella vulgaris. Journal of Phycology 47: 190-199

Click for downloadingPerez-Garcia, O., de-Bashan, L.E., Hernandez, J.-P., Bashan, Y. (2010) Efficiency of growth and nutrients uptake from wastewater by heterotrophic, autotrophic, and mixotrophic cultivation of Chlorella vulgaris jointly immobilized with Azospirillum brasilense. Journal of Phycology 46: 800-812.



Full CV

CURICULUM MSc Octavio 2011


Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering



Microalgae biomass production project-Universidad Iberoamericana (Spanish)

Presentacion Cancun 2010 SOLABIAA_Vazquez et al

Presentación fotos planta microalgas Ibero


Expansion Fractal Blog (Spanish)


From The Lab To Industry...


SF7489 Biological Fungicide

Starting life as a food colouring candidate, this novel metabolite from a unique strain of Epiccocum purpurascens has excellent efficacy against a broad range of phytopathogenic filamentous fungi, and potential pharmaceutical uses. More >>>

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