BBDG Seminars: "Synthetic gene circuits & their applications: Programming cells in space, time, and more"

🗓️ September, Mon 11, 2023, 12:00h

📍 Atrium (Instituto Biofisika)

"Synthetic gene circuits & their applications: Programming cells in space, time, and more"

Javier Santos-Moreno (University Pompeu Fabra)


Abstract: One of the central goals of synthetic biology is to control cell behavior in the most precise and programmable manner. The seminar will present approaches for and applications of programmable cell behavior. First, I will demonstrate the many advantages of CRISPR interference (CRISPRi) for building synthetic gene circuits that control bacterial cell behavior, from spatial pattern formation to temporal oscillations or bistability. Next, I will show how these circuits can be employed for varied applications, from the elucidation of evolutionary phenomena to the to the study of human pathogens. Third, I will discuss the potential of engineering non-model bacteria, exemplified by the modification of human skin bacteria for addressing skin diseases. Finally, I will comment on how I plan to program time in living cells. Overall, the seminar will highlight the potential of building living systems, rather than just observing them.


Biographical sketch: Javier Santos-Moreno studied Biotechnology at the University of Salamanca (2013), and holds a Master’s degree in Clinical Analysis from the University Pompeu Fabra (2014). His PhD research at Institute Pasteur and Collège de France (Paris) focused on the study of bacterial protein secretion (2016). In 2017, he joined the University of Lausanne (Switzerland) as a post-doc, where he worked on the design and construction of synthetic gene circuits. In December 2020 he moved to the University Pompeu Fabra, first as a Marie Curie and then as a Juan de la Cierva fellow, to work on the engineering of the human skin microbiome.