Meet an Algem User - Victor Sanchez, UCL

  • By algenuity
  • 19 Sep, 2017

Interview with Algem user, Victor Sanchez, a PhD Biochemical Engineering Student at UCL (UK)

Scientist holding Erlenmeyer flask with algae near labscale photobioreactor
Victor Sanchez working with Chlamydomonas reinhardtii in the Algem labscale photobioreactor

Our Algenuity team contacted an Algem user, Victor Sanchez, a PhD student at UCL, to ask him about his experience with the Algem labscale photobioreactor.  Below is a short interview.

Where do you work?


In the Biochemical Engineering Department at University College London.


How long have you been an Algem User?


Algem user since September 2016. 10 months.


What species or samples do you work with?


Chlamydomonas reinhardtii .


What is briefly the aim of your research?


Characterising the effects growing under different wavelengths has on C. reinhardtii at the physiological, metabolic and genetic levels.


What do you use the Algem for?


Growing batch cultures at different wavelengths with pH control.


What do you like about the Algem?

  • Its reproducibility.
  • The ability of controlling pH in flask cultures.
  • The ability to take samples maintaining axenic conditions without disturbing culture conditions.
  • The tight specs of the lights.

Did you use any other growing systems before the Algem and how did they compare?


To grow cells under different wavelengths I “engineered” my own light panel with RGBW LED strips. However the light distribution was not uniform (presumably my lack of electrical engineering skills did not help either). Therefore, performing experiments in triplicate and getting robust and consistent results was very hard. The Algem allows a standardisation and a high degree of control over culture conditions, which translates to high reproducibility of results.

Is there one thing you would recommend other Algem users to try?

The aseptic sampling with the three-way valve makes life so much easier. Especially if like me, the nearest safety cabinet to your Algem is relatively far away.


Learn more about the ascetic sampling technique in our application note: . Email for more information.

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