Strengthening the MIRRI Italian Research Infrastructure for Sustainable Bioscience and Bioeconomy

About the Project

SUS-MIRRI.IT will develop ResearchServices and Training within the Italian network of culture collections MIRRI-IT. Through the project we aim to increase the bioresources stored at the MIRRI-IT RI, improving their characterization and optimising their management, thus unlocking their genomic and metabolic potential. The optimised management of the resources coupled with the digital platform and data handling/sharing strategy will lead to further discoveries and the establishment of innovative solutions and products of biotechnological interest, stimulating the bio- and circular economy.

SUS-MIRRI.IT is coordinated by University of Turin, involves 15 institutions with 24 UOs, funded by National Recovery and Resilience Plan (PNRR) is granted by the European Commission’s NextGenerationEU programme, with a total budget of about €17.000.000

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The Scenario

Culture collections (CCs) and microbial Biological Resource Centres (mBRCs) are repositories of microorganisms that preserve biodiversity and facilitate the accession of microbial strains to the scientific and industrial communities. CCs and mBRCs collect and store data associated with microorganisms, carry on research and provide external users with support and services related to microbial resources. 
The Microbial Resource Research Infrastructure (MIRRI) is the pan-European infrastructure in charge of preservation, analysis, supply and valorisation of microbial resources and biodiversity. MIRRI has recently achieved the “Landmark” status on the European Strategy Forum on the ESFRI Roadmap 2021 and In June 2022, it has been granted the legal status of ERIC by the European Commission. Five Italian members, including four microbial CCs took part in the preparatory phase of the creation MIRRI from the beginning, being involved in the IS_MIRRI21 project (Implementation and Sustainability of Microbial Resource Research Infrastructure for the 21st Century) that aims at the self-sustainability of MIRRI in EU. 

Main Goals

 SUS-MIRRI.IT main goals are:

– Equipe microbiological MIRRI-IT laboratories with cutting-edge technologies to better satisfy the needs of National and European stakeholders;
– Characterise microbial collections to provide useful information to the stakeholders;
– Implement MIRRI-IT’s organisation and set up operative procedures and quality standards;
– Launch the Italian integrated catalogue of microorganisms;
– Conceive MIRRI-IT’s services based on partner expertise, capacity building and genetic resources;
– Set up a single-entry point platform to promote the resources, services, cutting-edge technologies, expertise and transfer of knowledge activities;
– Strengthen connections with stakeholders and synergies with other Health & Food RIs in Italy;
– Develop models and plans to support financial sustainability of MIRRI-IT;
– Maximise MIRRI-IT visibility in Italy and abroad;
– Create the Italian node of MIRRI-ERIC and contribute to services and data availability. 

Expected results and impact

SUS-MIRRI.IT expected results and impact:

– Achievement of the required level of Quality management Service by individual culture collections;
– Availability of high-quality microbial resources preserved in Culture Collections associated to MIRRI-IT, data, services and facilities;
– Access to the European consortium MIRRI-ERIC sharing deeply characterized single microorganisms, microbiomes and cutting-edge laboratories with highly trained staff;
– Attract capital and investments from Bioindustry at national and regional level;
– Young researchers’ recruitment by doctoral scholarships in collaboration with private companies and public bodies;
– Increase of competitiveness and technological development in key strategic areas of Health, Food and Environmental applications;
– Availability of new services and training activities targeting the public and private needs at territory level;
– A MIRRI-IT single entry platform providing integrated catalogue of information and data, services, training activities, dissemination and outreach activities.

Strategic Impact
– Promotion of partnerships on the territory to enhance the synergies and favouring the aggregation of skills, structures, resources, including human resources;
– Promotion of the development of the bio-based economy, contributing to the sustainability and safety of the environment and industrial processes;
– Targeted initiatives and stakeholder-oriented actions will assure that all the results produced by SUS-MIRRI.IT will be disseminated, and, when possible, transferred to industry, promoting the contribution to the bioeconomy.