Meet Our Team!

Project Manager:

Dr. El Sayed Ramadan El Sayed Ali, a visiting professor at the Wroclaw University of Environmental and Life Sciences (UPWr). Dr. El Sayed Ali is an Associate Professor of Applied Microbiology at the Nuclear Research Center, Egyptian Atomic Energy Authority, Cairo, Egypt. He received approximately 1 million PLN for executing the BioExplor Project under the POLONEZ BIS scheme funded by National Science Centre (NCN), Poland, and co-funded by European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant. Dr. El Sayed Ali completed his Ph.D. in Applied Microbiology at the Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt.

His research work focuses on the discovery and production of natural products of industrial applications such as mycophenolic acid, taxol, vinblastine, digoxin, and Huperzine A. Over the last few years, his research interests extended to use fungal endophytes to synthesize different nanomaterials, as a green, cost-effective, and eco-friendly platforms.

Dr. El Sayed is an Editor of three journals Archives of Microbiology, BMC Microbiology, and BMC Biotechnology. He recently awarded the State Encouragement Prize in Biological Sciences 2021 (National Award) by the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, Cairo, Egypt.

Project Mentor:

Dr. Filip Boratyński, Assoc. Prof. has been working at the Wroclaw University of Environmental and Life Sciences (UPWr) since 2004. He is a member of the board of Polish Chemical Society; a member of the Committee of Chemistry and Physics in Biology and Medicine of the Polish Academy of Sciences; a member of the Polish Society of Food Technologists (all Wrocław branch associations). Dr. Filip Boratyński hired in 2019 at Associate Professor position is leading the interdisciplinary team of 20 employees from 4 Departments at UPWr gathered in BioActiv Research Leading Group. He has a wide range of international collaboration. He gained experience during a number of international long-term fellowships, which he held in the USA (University of Florida in Prof. Stewart’s group), Germany (Technical University of Berlin in Prof. Garbe’s group) and Italy, where he conducted research in Prof. Brenna’s group at Politecnico di Milano under the Bekker programme financed by National Agency of Academic Exchange (NAWA). Additionally, he was hired as Assistance Professor (temporary position) at Neubrandenburg University of Applied Sciences in Germany under the programme „International Cooperation for teaching and research in the region mildest and south of Europe” (MOEL-SOEL). He participated in many training courses organized by Foundation for Polish Science (FNP) in the fields of Entrepreneurship, Commercialization of Research Results, Research Project Management. Dr. Filip Boratyński research interests lie at the border of biology and chemistry and focus on application of biocatalysts in organic synthesis. He applies enzymes as well as whole cells of microorganisms in production of bioactive compounds using different techniques of fermentation in looking for biocatalysts with specific activity. Over the last few years his research interests focused on sustainable management of by-products and wastes generated by the agri-food industry to produce industrially important pigments and fragrances with the use of biotechnological tools.


dr inż. Witold Pietrzak, Degree of Doctor of Philosophy obtained in 2015 at Wroclaw University of Environmental and Life Sciences. Thesis title “Utilization of bakery industry wastes for bioethanol production”. Since 2014 employed as assistant in the Department of Fermentation and Cereals Technology, since 2018 as adjunct. Scientific interests concern fermentation technology (ethanol and biomass production); valorization of wastes via biotechnological methods; integrated processes in bioprocess technology; application of filamentous fungi for improvement of technological processes and waste biorefinery.

PhD Student

mgr inż. Anna Dunal, Student of the first year of PhD at the Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences in the discipline of biological sciences. In her doctoral thesis, she deals with the chemoenzymatic synthesis and determination of the biological activity of lactones and increasing the efficiency of their delivery to cancer cells. A graduate of Master’s studies in biotechnology and agriculture at the Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences. In 2021, she participated in the project of the National Science Center (NCN) on the study of the physicochemical and biological properties of sterol glycerides and their products formed during thermal oxidation. She also completed a scientific internship at PCC Rokita SA. Her interests include the obtaining of new compounds with potential biological properties and interactions of compounds with cell membranes.

PhD Student

mgr inż. Anita Dudek, she has been involved in biotechnology since the beginning of her studies, first studying Applied Plant Biotechnology and then continuing and graduating with a master’s degree in Biotechnology at the Wroclaw University of Environmental and Life Sciences (UPWr). Her master’s thesis focused on the effects of plant-derived compounds on the physicochemical properties of biological membranes. Since 2022, Anita has been a PhD student at the UPWr Doctoral School in the biological sciences discipline. Her research mainly concentrates on developing liposome carriers and encapsulating compounds such as flavonoids and metal compounds that have anticancer properties. Anita is interested in nanotechnology and its use in delivering active substances to organisms and applying spectrofluorimetric techniques in biological research.

PhD Student

Mgr. Tech. Abirami Baskaran is a first-year PhD student at Wroclaw University of Environmental and Life Sciences studying biotechnology. She attained Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Biotechnology, with a thesis on environmental biotechnology for her master’s degree and nanobiotechnology for her bachelor’s. Before beginning her adventure as a PhD student, she spent three years as a research fellow, discovering the bacterial species diversity in the little-known Southern Ocean. She has a modest number of publications including research, review articles, and a few book chapters. Currently, she is investigating the ability of endophytic fungi as factories of natural products. Her passion is exploring understudied environments in search of new and rare microorganisms that can yield novel compounds for therapeutic purposes.

MSc Student

inż. Daria Mykhailova, a master’s degree student at the Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences in the discipline of biological sciences. In her MSc thesis, she is working on using endophytic fungi as a therapeutic tool in the treatment of cancer, as well as a solution to a growing civilizational problem – antibiotic resistance under supervision of Dr. El Sayed Ali. A year ago, she returned from an Erasmus academic exchange, where she completed a Cancer biology course at the University of Montpellier, France. Daria also works at Pure Biologics she as a researcher in the field of immunooncology. During her work, she learned and conducted the production of bispecific antibodies in mammalian cells and their subsequent purification and analysis. Also, she deepened her habits in running cell lines.

MSc Student

inż. Sahil Satam, a master’s degree graduate from Wroclaw University of Science and Technology. In his MSc thesis, he studied the optimization and inhibition of urease produced by helicobacter pylori. Before pursuing master’s he worked in a diagnostic lab processing samples for NIPT tests based on the NGS platform. His bachelor’s was in Biotechnology from D Y Patil University, India and his thesis was focused on studying the association of genetic polymorphisms to drug response. 


Magdalena Kloc, a first-year medical student at the Medical University of Wrocław. A graduate of the High School No. XIV in Wrocław. Laureate of the XXV Olympiad on Nutrition and Food. Member of the Student Scientific Association of Cancer Cell Biology. In July 2022, she had an internship at the Center for Biological and Chemical Sciences in Warsaw in the project Interactions of antibiotic lipoproteins with model lipid membranes. Since September 2022, she has been participating in research with the BioActiv team at the University of Life Sciences in Wrocław. Initially, she was involved in experimental work on biotransformation involving bacteria and fungi. Her interests include oncology, microbiology, molecular biology and also sports, especially long-distance running.

Project National Collaborators:

Dr hab. inż. Julita Kulbacka, professor at the Wroclaw Medical University, at the Faculty of Pharmacy. Currently employed at Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology of WMU, and as a chief researcher at the Department of Immunology, National Research Institute at the Center for Innovative Medicine in Vilnius (Lithuania). Scientific research of dr hab. J. Kulbacka focus on experimental anti-cancer therapies using physical methods, including photodynamic therapy, nanotechnology, electroporation and magnetic field. She is a manager of national and international project (NCN, NCBiR, FNP, MEiN). She is and author and co-author of numerous patents and scientific publications. In 2022, she was among the top 2% of the world’s most cited scientists.

Dr. Joanna Grzelczyk, Assistant Professor at the Institute of Food Technology and Analysis of the Łódź University of Technology. In 2021, she defended her PhD cum laude at the Institute of Food Technology and Analysis of the Łódź University of Technology. The topic of the doctoral dissertation: “Bioavailability and health-promoting properties of hydroxycinnamic acids of coffee beans modified in the roasting process”. In 2016, she completed a Diploma of MSc in Technical Sciences in the specialty Food Technology / Food Refrigeration Technology at the Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Sciences of the Lodz University of Technology on the basis of the master’s thesis entitled “The use of alginate to shape the textural and health-promoting properties of frozen fruit products”. She is a winner of Preludium 15 and the Polmos Żyrardów competitions for the best PhD dissertation. She also won a distinction in the “Mam pomysł na startup” competition. In 2019, she completed a research fellowship at the McGill University in Montreal, Canada. Dr. Grzelczyk is the author of a number of papers in international journals and co-author of one patent and several patent applications.

Project International Collaborators:

 Prof. Dr. Wolfram Bruck, professor of microbiology and head of the microbiology laboratories at the Institute of Life Technologies of the University of Applied Sciences Western Switzerland (HES-SO//Valais-Wallis). In addition, he is also a Technical Expert for the Swiss Accreditation Service.

Prof. Brück studied microbiology at St. Cloud State University in Minnesota, USA before pursuing a M.Sc. in medical and molecular microbiology at the University of Manchester, UK.  In 2003, he finished his Ph.D. at the University of Reading, UK in the laboratory of Prof. Glenn Gibson on the influence of prebiotic milk peptides on infant health.   Throughout his professional career, Wolfram Brück has developed a strong international perspective in food and health microbiology and biotechnology through academic and industrial posts in Denmark, USA, Ireland, the UK and Switzerland.

Administrative and financial coordinator

Anna Borkowska-Szwarc, educated in Social Sciences at University of Wrocław, successfully completed postgraduate program Advanced Project Management at Wrocław University of Economics and Business in partnership with Project Management Institute (PMI), PRINCE2® certificate. Experienced in project management, journalism, Public Relations, political marketing, NGO’s management. In 2020 started work in the Project Implementations and Settlement Center at Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences, specialized in implementations and settlement of international projects. In the BioExplor project, she is responsible for coordination of administrative and financial services.

Beneficiary Institution 

Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences (UPWr) is one of the best specialist universities in Poland. It conducts training and research in the field of agricultural and natural sciences as well as the engineering and technical ones. In the area of research and scientist employment, UPWr follows the standards of the Human Resources Excellence in Research Logo, awarded to the University by the European Commission in 2017, and in the didactic area it strives to provide education able to meet the current requirements of the labour market. For several years, the University has been listed in the international Shanghai Ranking among the best universities in the world in the fields of Food Science & Technology and Veterinary Science. In the last evaluation of Polish research units, UPWr received one outstanding A+ grade – for the nutrition and food technology disicpline, and an A grade for the civil engineering and transport, and the social and economic geography and spatial management disciplines. In 2022, UPWr joined the prestigious group of consortia of the European Universities with the EUGREEN Alliance consisting of 9 European HEIs.

The BioExplor project is a part of activities carried out by the BioActiv Research Leading Group (BioActiv LRG) at Wroclaw University of Environmental and Life Sciences (UPWr). The group members were selected from 4 Departments and are well experienced research group represented by its leader – Prof. Filip Boratyński. The BioActiv LRG is a highly interdisciplinary research team focused on the development of new, cost-efficient and environmentally friendly methods for the biocatalytic synthesis of bioactive compounds.