We had a great talk by John Glass, who was a principal on the team who, after about 15 years and 40 million dollars, synthetically created a bacteria genome. Well now we have Lisa Scheifele. (Yeah, she has a PhD) Lisa was on the team that very recently created the first synthetic chromosome in a "higher" organism (yeast) whose cells contain nuclei (eukaryote), unlike bacteria. And Lisa is doing more than talking. In her words
" Since the Human Genome Project, scientists have become masters at reading the genetic code. But now, new technologies allow us to not only read DNA sequences, but also to write the genetic code! Scientists now regularly custom design and then synthesize short DNA sequence and are pioneering techniques to assemble larger custom genes and genomes. This unprecedented ability to create and manipulate living organisms has opened new frontiers in our ability to create life in the lab.
In this 5-session “Build-a-Gene” class, we will learn and practice the techniques that synthetic biologists use in genome synthesis, including creation of synthetic genes, assembly of larger DNA fragments by Gibson Assembly, and the use of yeast cells for gene assembly. In addition to lab work, we will be discussing this brave new frontier in biological engineering- how this technology is currently being used to redesign cells and systems, and how society should respond to and regulate this new field. Join us as we learn to synthesize new genes from scratch!
In this first session we'll discuss different ways to customize gene sequences, and we'll assemble small DNA pieces into a gene-sized DNA segment. The five sessions are designed to give a good survey of synthetic biology techniques while doing an interesting project. While we encourage you to take all five sessions, each session can stand on its own. You do not need to commit to all five sessions to enjoy the experience. There are no prerequisites!"
The five sessions will be on Saturdays, July 12 and 26 and August 9, 23, and 30 all at 9:00 AM to 1 PM. For early registration, cost is $65 per session, free to members. 3 days before the session (July 9) the price goes up to $75 per session, and $10 to members. (this is to encourage early enrollment so that we can properly plan) Please Register HERE
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