Sustainability via Synthetic Biology – A Growing Role for Biotechnology in the Chemical Industry [Mellichamp Lecture]

Event Date: October 3, 2013
Speaker: Prof. Brian Pfleger
Speaker Affiliation: College of Engineering
University of Wisconsin
Time: 9:00 - 10:15 pm
Location: FRNY G140

Abstract:  Finding a sustainable alternative for today’s petrochemical industry is a major challenge facing chemical engineers and society at large. To be sustainable, routes for converting carbon dioxide and light into organic compounds for use as both fuels and chemical building blocks must be identified, understood, and engineered. Advances in synthetic biology and other biological engineering disciplines have expanded the scope of what can be produced by a living organism. As in other engineering disciplines, synthetic biologists want to apply a general understanding of math and science (e.g. biology, biochemistry) to construct complex systems from well-characterized parts (e.g. DNA, protein).