475265 The Emerging Organism Engineering Industry

Wednesday, November 16, 2016: 9:06 AM
Continental 6 (Hilton San Francisco Union Square)
Reshma Shetty, Ginkgo Bioworks, Boston, MA

There is an emerging demand for sourcing plant-derived extracts (nutraceuticals, flavors, fragrances, sweeteners, etc.) from engineered microbes. While recent advances in synthetic biology and metabolic engineering provide feasible approaches to engineering such organisms, commercial success for developing these “cultured” ingredients presents specific challenges. Unlike biofuels, where efforts can be focused on one particular molecule given the enormous market size, cultured ingredients require developing different organism lines in a rapid and low cost fashion. This requires a scalable solution for bio-manufacturing of organisms, which is provided by our state of the art foundry that continues to grow. I will describe how organism development at Ginkgo leverages our foundry to accelerate the design/build/test using specific examples. In particular, I will highlight the value of combining computer-aided engineering software tools, cheap gene synthesis and high resolution-accurate mass LCMS to develop engineered microbes. Finally, I’ll touch on how our improvements in manufacturing organisms lend to opportunities outside of cultured ingredients.

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