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I am a member of the BEACON+ Project and the Centre for Cytochrome P450 Biodiversity at the Institute of Life Science, Swansea University. As a Fulbright scholar, I earned my Ph.D. at Texas A&M University in Biological and Agricultural Engineering and as an honors scholarship recipient, I earned my M.Sc. in Biotechnology and my B.Eng. in Biological Engineering degrees at the National University of Colombia at Medellin.

My research focuses on industrial and environmental biotechnology, nanotechnology, and renewable energy. In my previous years, I worked in the production of Volatile Fatty Acids (VFA) using anaerobic mixed fermentation and VFA recovery using esterification and membrane technology. I developed the first method for the production of silicon and carbonaceous compounds using biochar chemical and biological depolymerization. I have worked in the production of biofuels using biochemical and thermal conversion. I became well versed in designing experimental methods and performing data analysis using univariate, inference, and multivariate statistics using statistical packages (SAS and R). I have experience performing the complete set of analyses for plant biomass (compositional analysis, ultimate, proximate, heating value, etc) and detecting and analysing chemical products using GC/MS, FT-IR, HPLC, TLC, UV-Vis, and Fluorescence meter.

As a member of the BEACON+ project, I am working in the transformation of lignocellulosic material into chemical compounds using recombinant yeast. In that area, we are seeking new methods to produce steroids such as 11α-hydroxyprogesterone and chemical compounds such squalene. Additionally, we are looking in the production and characterization of biochar-derived nanoparticles.

I am seeking to establish collaborations with community and academia within Wales to Develop new products and processes that will support economic growth, Create highly skilled jobs in the area of green biotech, Support inward investment, and Promote science excellence from Wales.

Areas of Expertise

  • Bioprocess engineering
  • Environmental Biotechnology
  • Nanotechnology
  • Circular economy
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Renewable Energy
  • Renewable nanomaterials
  • Industrial Biotechnology
  • Biofuels
  • Anaerobic Digestion
  • Bioseparations
  • Pyrolysis
  • Gasification
  • Biorefineries
  • Biosensors


  1. Plácido, J., Bustamante-López, S., Meissner, K., Kelly, D., Kelly, S., Kelly, S., Meissner, K., Placido Escobar, J. NanoRefinery of carbonaceous nanomaterials: Complementing dairy manure gasification and their applications in cellular imaging and heavy metal sensing Science of The Total Environment 689 10 20
  2. Plácido, J., Bustamante López, S., Meissner, K., Kelly, D., Kelly, S., Kelly, S., Meissner, K., Placido Escobar, J. Multivariate analysis of biochar-derived carbonaceous nanomaterials for detection of heavy metal ions in aqueous systems Science of The Total Environment 688 751 761
  3. Cadavid-Rodríguez, L., Vargas-Muñoz, M., Plácido, J., Placido Escobar, J. Biomethane from fish waste as a source of renewable energy for artisanal fishing communities Sustainable Energy Technologies and Assessments 34 110 115
  4. Pérez-Grisales, M., Castrillón-Tobón, M., Copete-Pertuz, L., Plácido, J., Mora-Martínez, A., Placido Escobar, J. Biotransformation of the antibiotic agent cephadroxyl and the synthetic dye Reactive Black 5 by Leptosphaerulina sp. immobilised on Luffa (Luffa cylindrica) sponge Biocatalysis and Agricultural Biotechnology 18 101051
  5. Plácido, J., Bustamante-López, S., Meissner, K., Kelly, D., Kelly, S., Kelly, S., Kelly, D., Meissner, K., Placido Escobar, J. Microalgae biochar-derived carbon dots and their application in heavy metal sensing in aqueous systems Science of The Total Environment 656 531 539

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