Dr. Matthias Bierenstiel is an associate professor of inorganic chemistry here at CBU, where he has worked for more than nine years. Originally from Germany, Matthias came to Canada 17 years ago. He received his PhD from the University of Munich, in co-operation with the University of Guelph, on the topic of metal catalysis of sugars and alcohols. He then went on to the University of Alberta, Edmonton, for a postdoctoral research project of the structure and reactivity of metal complexes with two metal centres.
Matthias has been awarded more than 1.8 million in research funding in the eight years he has been with CBU, along with many awards. He is conducting a fundamental research program on metal-metal interactions and several applied research projects with external partners, one of which is BioEnergy Inc., a Sydney-based manufacturer of biomass-based activated carbon and biochar products. With the assistance of a postdoctoral researcher, he is looking at value-added processes of bark, which is a waste product in activated carbon manufacturing. Currently, Matthias is developing a patent on the optimization of the extraction process of medicinally-active bark ingredients.
Another research project he is involved in with Chelation Partners, a developmental-stage life sciences company based in Halifax, NS, is on a new polymer that selectively binds iron, an element needed by organisms to live. This polymer helps to improve antibiotic use, including treatment of strains that have been classified as antibiotic resistant. “They have a great team at Chelation Partners, and I am very excited and proud to provide my expertise as an inorganic chemist,” says Matthias.