Hes-so Valais


Prof. Dr. Manfred Zinn

Prof. Dr. Manfred Zinn
RoleProfessor UAS
Head of Research group Biotechnology and Sustainable Chemistry
Phone+ 41 27 606 86 66

Dr. Manfred Zinn studied Biotechnology at ETH Zurich where he also did his PhD in the lab of Prof. Bernard Witholt on multiple nutrient limited growth conditions. He did 2 postdocs in US at the University of Tennessee (Knoxville) and Harvard (Boston) in the field of biofilm research.
Back in Switzerland in 2000 he joined Eawag in Duebendorf and after 2 years moved on to Empa St. Gallen, where he led a research group dedicated to biosynthesis and applications of biopolyesters.
Since October 2011 he became Professor in the Biotechnology unit at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Western Switzerland (HES-SO // Valais – Wallis), where he teaches bioprocess technology at Bachelor and Masters level.
Manfred Zinn leads the group Bioprocesses and Biomaterials and also coordinates the activities of the research group Biotechnology and Sustainable Chemistry (BSC).


Manfred Zinn’s research is currently focussed on following topics:

  • Screening of microbial strains and characterization of their cell physiology
  • Bioprocess design (batch, fed-batch, chemostat, and auxostats) for aerobic and anaerobic cultures
  • Optimization of culture media for microbial and animal cell cultures (DOE)
  • Utilization of sustainable liquid (e.g. oil) and gaseous (e.g. syngas) substrates for fermentations
  • Process analytical technology (PAT) for open and closed loop control
  • Scale-up of bioprocesses from shake flask to 300 L bioreactor
  • High cell density cultivations of yeast and bacteria
  • Biosynthesis of biotechnological products such as RNA, chiral synthons, recombinant proteins, antibodies, and biomaterials/bioplastics
  • Biosynthesis and application of polyhydroxyalkanoates for industrial and medical applications