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BioMateriOME: To understand microbe-material interactions within sustainable, living architectures

Lookup NU author(s): Romy Kaiser, Paula Nerlich, Dr Angela SherryORCiD


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© 2022 Elsevier Inc.BioMateriOME evolved from a prototyping process which was informed from discussions between a team of designers, architects and microbiologists, when considering constructing with biomaterials or human cohabitation with novel living materials in the built environment. The prototype has two elements (i) BioMateriOME-Public (BMP), an interactive public materials library, and (ii) BioMateriOME-eXperimental (BMX), a replicated materials library for rigorous microbiome experimentation. The prototype was installed into the OME, a unique experimental living house, in order to (1) gain insights into society's perceptions of living materials, and (2) perform a comparative analysis of indoor surface microbiome development on novel biomaterials in contrast to conventional indoor surfaces, respectively. This review summarizes the BioMateriOME prototype and its use as a tool in combining microbiology, design, architecture and social science. The use of microbiology and biological components in the fabrication of biomaterials is provided, together with an appreciation of the microbial communities common to conventional indoor surfaces, and how these communities may change in response to the implementation of living materials in our homes. Societal perceptions of microbiomes and biomaterials, are considered within the framework of healthy architecture. Finally, features of architectural design with microbes in mind are introduced, with the possibility of codifying microbial surveillance into design and construction benchmarks, standards and regulations toward healthier buildings and their occupants.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Delgado Corrales B, Kaiser R, Nerlich P, Agraviador A, Sherry A

Publication type: Book Chapter

Publication status: Published

Book Title: Advances in Applied Microbiology

Year: 2022

Pages: epub ahead of print

Online publication date: 26/12/2022

Acceptance date: 02/04/2022

Publisher: Academic Press Inc.


DOI: 10.1016/bs.aambs.2022.11.001