Latest News

New project: Converting Carbon Emissions into Useful Chemicals

New project funded by US DOE, with Prof. Gralnick and lead by Prof. Schmidt-Dannert, aims at creating bioreactors to convert CO2 into formate.

Reed Jacobson receives a fellowship!

Reed Jacobson receives the 2021 3M Science & Technology  Graduate Fellowship at the BMBB department banquet.

Probable meets Possible! “Learning to speak microbe”

Prof. Elias and Prof. Harcombe discuss microbial abilities to exchange information at the Bell Science Museum.

Capturing phosphorus

Examining the rapid decline in phosphorus  and subsequent decline of water quality due to run-off. 

Degradation of forever chemicals PFAS?

Dr. Elias and Dr. Wackett receive a MnDrive grant to investigate potential PFAS degradation systems.

Biotechnology Training Grant

Congratulations to Mai Beauclaire for entering the NIH biotechnology training grant program!

Signal and Noise

Enzyme-based coatings developed at the University of Minnesota help protect port infrastructure by disrupting the signals underwater bacteria use to communicate. 

Anthony Jenks receives a fellowship

Anthony Jenks receives the 2019 Armstrong-Pothapragada Graduate Fellowship at the BMBB department banquet.

Celine Bergonzi is awarded the best PhD thesis award by the Crystallography Association

The French Crystallography Association awards Celine Bergonzi the Best PhD thesis award in Biology.


The Elias Lab is awarded a NIH NIGMS R35 grant

The Elias Lab received a prestigious NIH award to investigate microbial signaling.

Eco-Friendly, anticorrosion coatings

Read a new story about our enzyme-based coating technology.

Failure to Communicate

“Silencing” bacteria may give scientists an antibiotic-free route to controlling infections and balancing the microbiome.

Battling Biocorrosion in Duluth-Superior Harbor

An article of the Gateway magazine on our research project involving bacterial control and biocorrosion.


Dr. Rakesh Sikdar receives a best poster award!

Dr. Rakesh Sikdar receives a best poster award at the Biofilms 2019 meeting for his demonstration of the efficacy of quorum quenching enzymes in C. elegans infection models.

Dr. Elias wins a golgen pipettes award!

Dr. Elias wins the Best Undergraduate Research Mentor Award at the Golgen Pipettes Ceremony.


Battling Biocorrosion in the Duluth-Superior Harbor

Infography credits: Jenna Privatsky (Designer), AnnaMarie Rutledge (Writer)


Elias Lab at the iPrime meeting 2018

The Elias lab presented scientific work at the annual iPrime meeting in Minneapolis

Bio Magazine Spring Issue On Extremophiles

The Elias lab research is featured in the spring 2018 edition of the Bio magazine! see here.


Petri Dish: A Tiny Take on Toxins

Engineering enzymes to clean up the environment. The panelists include Mikael Elias, an assistant professor in the University's Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, and Biophysics and its Biotechnology Institute, and Paige Novak, a professor in the University's Department of Civil Engineering.

Dr Elias receives a Golden Pipette Award!

Dr Elias received the Faculty Choice Award at the Golden Pipettes ceremony.


Dr. Elias named the 2017 Early Innovator Award

For his recent discoveries on enzymatic bacterial control, Dr. Elias is the Early Innovator Award in the year 2017.


Breaking the code of bacteria with Dr. Bergonzi

UMN researcher in the Elias Lab searches for clues to bacterial communication.

Harmful Turned Harmless in a Snap

Mikael Elias and colleagues engineer an enzyme that rapidly neutralizes the toxicity of common pesticides and herbicides.

Protein Crystals Growing in Real Time!

Time-lapse of the crystal growth of an enzyme (lactonase from Geobacillus caldoxylosilyticus)

[VIDEO] Early Investigator 2017

Enzymes were engineered to disrupt bacterial signaling and alter bacterial bahavior.


Elias Lab @ the Microbial Factories Symposium

The Elias lab presented results on poster at the symposium organized by the BioTechnology Institute, Profs. Mike Freeman and Mikael Elias

Louis Hey is awarded a UROP fellowship

Louis receives a UROP fellowship to support his research of the bacterial phosphate uptake system.

Louis Hey on his recent award

Louis received the 2016 Harold Paul Morris Memorial Scholarship.


2016 Retreat at the Mississippi Headwaters - Itasca

Elias Lab @ the BMBB Department at the Itasca Biological Station.


French Crystallographic Meeting 2016

Celine Bergonzi wins the poster award in Marseille (picture credit AFC)

Solving the Phosphorus Paradox

Mikael Elias, Vanessa Pegos and Bo Hu go over their approach on their winning grand challenge project on phosphate removal and recycling.


iPrime may 31st-june 2nd 2016

Celine Bergonzi, Mike Schwab and Vanessa Pegos are presenting their findings to industrial and academic fellows @ iPrime


Celine Bergonzi is awarded the best poster prize @ iPrime

Meeting with industries at the UMN iPrime

Dr. Elias and Lab folks are going to share recent findings at iPrime.

Biofilm Club Annual Symposium 2016

Dr. Elias is talking about the optimized enzyme generated in the lab to disrupt bacterial communication.

Louis Hey wins two awards!

Louis has been awarded the Harold Paul Morris Memorial Scholarship and the Danielson Blake Family  Scholarship. Congratulations!

Vanessa Pegos wins the Grand Challenge!

Vanessa had been awarded a Grand Challenges in Biology award by the College of Biological Sciences!


Celine Bergonzi receives a French Academic Award

Congrats to Celine, she received the Jean Walter Zellidja award!

New website launched!

Here is the new version of the lab website !

New Strategy to Treat Acute Pneumonia

Because Pseudomonas aeruginosa can be totally resistant to all antibiotics that we know, it can become an incurable infection...



Extreme Enzymes!

Ask Mikael Elias about his research interests and you may be surprised by his response...


U scoops biochemistry researcher from France!

Portrait of French native Mikael Elias, an incoming biochemistry assistant professor...