If we want to solve a problem that we have never solved before, we must leave the door to the unknown ajar
– Richard Feynman
Development of programmable tools
Restriction modification and CRISPR systems, two types of bacterial defense systems, have revolutionized modern biology and biotechnology. We still have a limited understanding of the enormous diversity of programmable bacterial and eukaryotic systems and all possible mechanisms. Using bioinformatics and experimental pipelines, we are studying many new systems and exploring ways to turn them into new molecular tools.
New gene delivery approaches
Even with the perfect gene editing technology, specific delivery to tissues in the body is a difficult challenge. We are exploring the enormous diversity of particles in nature capable of transducing cells and engineering them for precise cellular delivery.
Molecular tools for studying aging
In aging, cells undergo dysfunction at many levels. We are applying molecular tools for dissecting why cells lose their proper function and attempting to engineer technologies that can selectively eliminate detrimental cells or regenerate tissues. We also are developing new platforms for cellular repgrogramming and cell specific control.
Monitoring and controlling cell states
Our understanding of development and disease has been massively accelerated by profiling at the single cell resolution, but there are no current tools to transform these learnings into actionable hypotheses, diagnostics, or therapeutics. We are developing approaches to specifically target cell states for tracking, perturbation, and control, creating a new platform for studying and translating single-cell biology
Climate change and sustainability
Our lab uses artificial intelligence and cutting-edge protein engineering to tackle climate change and sustainability problems. Through our work, we're developing novel enzyme and protein-based solutions in areas such as manufacturing, biomaterials, decarbonization, and more to drive impactful advances in sustainability and decrease the effects of climate change.