Jay Keasling, a senior faculty scientist in Biological Systems and Engineering, professor at UC Berkeley, and CEO of the Joint BioEnergy Institute, is the recipient of the Science History Institute’s 2022 Othmer Gold Medal. The award recognizes his efforts in developing innovative synthetic biology tools that address major societal challenges such as biofuel manufacturing and medical applications.
Synthetic biologists have successfully engineered microbes to make chemicals cheaply and more sustainably. However, researchers have been limited by the fact that microbes can only make molecules using chemical reactions seen in nature.
A collaboration between scientists at Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley has engineered the microbe E. coli to produce a molecule that, until now, could only be synthesized in a laboratory.
Jay Keasling, a senior faculty scientist in Biological Systems and Engineering, professor at UC Berkeley, and CEO of the Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI), has been named a Distinguished Scientist Fellow by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.
Jay Keasling, Chief Executive Officer of the Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI) and Senior Faculty Scientist in BSE, was interviewed by Cimpatico TV on how bioengineering can solve global challenges.
The average person in the U.S. generates about 100 kg of plastic waste per year, most of which goes straight to a landfill. A team led by the Joint BioEnergy Institute’s (JBEI) Corinne Scown and Jay Keasling and the Molecular Foundry’s Brett Helms and Kristin Persson set out to change that. Less than two years ago, Helms announced the invention of poly(diketoenamine), or PDK, a material that has all the convenient properties of traditional plastics while avoiding the environmental pitfalls. Now, collaborating with researchers from JBEI and Biosciences, the team has released a study that shows what can be accomplished if manufacturers began using PDKs on a large scale.