Institute on Membrane Technology of the National Research Council of Italy
Dr. Lidietta Giorno serves as the Director of the Institute on Membrane Technology of the National Research Council of Italy, ITM-CNR, since 2009.
She is an expert in membrane science and membrane bioengineering with particular focus on nanostructured biohybrid membranes, biocatalytic membrane reactors, membrane emulsification, integrated membrane processes for water, biotechnology, pharmaceutical and biorefinery.
She awarded The International Awards "Guido Dorso" for Research in 2011, sponsored by the Italian Senate and the University of Naples Federico II. She awarded the Sapio Red Carpet Award in 2016 among the female scientists of highest scientific profile who are engaged for the development of the Country.
Lidietta Giorno is co-author of 13 books, over 200 peer reviewed papers, and co-editor of the Encyclopedia of Membranes, Springer, 2016.
She has served on the European Membrane Society Council as the President of the EMS Council and the Editor of the EMS Membrane Newsletter. She is Honorary Member of the European Membrane Society since 2014.
Process waters from agro-food industry are an important source of both reclaimed water and bioderived green chemicals. For example, waters coming from the production of olive oil are reach in biophenols, that can find use as nutraceuticals, antiinflammatory, but also as fine chemical substitutes of oil derived products. In this area, the use of integrated processes based on nanostructured membranes confirmed, on a laboratory prototype scale, the possibility to recover and valorize biofunctional molecules fractions. Simultaneously, water can be purified to the extend of being reused in the prodcutive line. The introduction of biofunctional membranes (i.e. membranes that bear biofuntional properties such as biocatalytic, biosensing, biocide activity, etc.) can promote advances in the process performance in terms of production properties, degradation of contaminants, biofouling control, etc. Biofunctional membranes can be obtained by introducing a biocomponent into the synthetic membrane matrix (biohybrid membranes) or by introducing a synthetic structure that exhibits the boactive property (biomimic membrane). The lecture will focus on the development of biohybrid membranes, highlighting the crucial role of membranes with nanongineered materials and structures to properly heterogenize biomolecules as well as guarantee suitable transport properties thus improving process performance. Case studies realted to the production of biophenols and the degradation of micropollutants will be illustrated.