The Molecular Biodiversity Laboratory (MBLab) is a private-public initiative, started at the end of 2007, involved in the study and the use of Molecular Biodiversity knowledge.
It aims to build novel bioinformatic systems that leverage this kind of knowledge, both applied to human health - in order to monitor safety and risks - and to agro-industry, to have a deep tracing methods of products along food production and supply chains, for instance.
The project is also an advanced first-of-the-kind multidisciplinary training initiative to train a group of young researchers in bioinformatics with specific know-how on molecular biodiversity. The project was partially funded by MUR (Italian Ministry of University and Scientific Research) pursuant to Article 12 of Ministerial Decree of 8 August 2000 and assigned to IBM Italia S.p.A, CNR (ISPA and ITB depatments), University of Bari (Departments of Computing Science and Biotechnology), University of Naples - Federico II and Università Telematica Guglielmo Marconi. The project leader until October 2009 was Dr. Luigi Di Pace, director of IBM Innovation Lab of Bari.
The MBLab stategy is mixing and balancing public and private resources, in an open research collaboaration style, to build an operative research network to provide high- value services and products based on molecular biodiversity. Our researchers form a "cross-partner research collaboratorium" and a centre of excellence in Bioinformatic Molecular Biodiversity.
The MBLab attended the Festival of Innovation at the Fiera del Levante in Bari organized by ARTI (Agenzia Regionale per la tecnologia e l'innovazione) last December, dedicated to innovation and development of new technologies and aimed to promote dialogue and interaction between researches, manufacturing centres and public administration.
On this occasion MBLab presented their research objectivies in the area denominated "Land", dedicated to land and environment and designed to promote the contribution made by IT to improve the quality of life.
IBM also hosted a panel discussion titled "A network of research in Puglia for the molecular study of biodiversity and the implementation of ICT applications in industrial research for sustainable development" to explain the strategic, both scientific and academic, importance to acquare and manage knowledge of molecolar biodiversity and in particular the contribution that synergic combinations of disciplines such as Information Technology and Bioinformatics can give to understand biodiversity and use this knowledge to realize a new class of smarter systems and applications that can help our society (health, food, environment, etc).