Institutional Members

  • Jared DeCoste

    Dr. DeCoste is a Research Chemist at CCDC Chemical and Biological Center (formerly the Edgewood Chemical Biological Center (ECBC)) leading the Biological Engineering for Applied Materials Solutions (BEAMS) program. His last 9 years of experience at ECBC have been in the Chem/Bio Protection Division mainly focusing on novel materials development for the remediation of chemical threats. His work has led to more than 50 manuscripts, 50 oral presentations, and 5 patents, on his research. His work has been highlighted by periodicals/news outlets including Chemical and Engineering News, Materials Today, Fox News, Science Daily, CBRNE World, and Nature. Dr. DeCoste has been recognized by his superiors and peers through numerous awards including the ACS Maryland Chemist of the Year Award, Achievement Medal for Civilian Service, ECBC’s Rookie of the Year for Outstanding Early Career Achievement, ECBC’s Safety Award, ECBC’s STEM Volunteer Award, Leidos’s Publication Prize for Physical sciences, and the 2018 Md ACS Chemist of the Year Award. His work in the BEAMS program has been a highlight of his career thus far as it has allowed him to collaborate and innovate in ways that only working in a highly interdisciplinary field allows. His work has always revolved around finding unique ways to progress science through working together, as evidenced in the pride he takes in aiding others through mentorship, encouraging collaboration, and developing opportunities to learn and evolve in the ever changing scientific landscape.

  • Zachary Sun

    Zachary Sun is the CEO and co-Founder of Tierra Biosciences, a startup leveraging cell-free synthetic biology, automation, computer learning, and metagenomics to identify new molecules and new chemistry from Nature’s genetic datasets.

  • Rebecca Nugent

    Rebecca is an experienced R&D executive focused on commercializing research in the biotech industry enabling applications such as cell & gene therapies, synthetic biology and genomics. Dr. Nugent is currently the VP of HTP Operations at Tessera Therapeutics. Prior to Tessera, she led the research department at Synthego, developing novel technologies for genome engineering with a focus on human cell and gene therapies. Prior to Synthego, Rebecca spent six years at Twist Bioscience where she focused on the development of Synthetic Biology and Next-Generation Sequencing Target Enrichment (NGS TE) products. She did her Post-Doc at New England Biolabs and received her Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from the University of Southern California, where she studied yeast genetics with an emphasis on genomic stability.

  • Jean Peccoud

    Dr. Peccoud’s research program focuses on synthetic biology informatics. His group combines computational and experimental efforts to develop predictive models of behaviors encoded in synthetic DNA sequences. He is particularly interested in using methods from synthetic biology to optimize biomanufacturing processes used to produce biologic drugs, antibodies, and other proteins of commercial interest. Peccoud is also actively engaged in efforts to understand the security implications of synthetic biology.

    Shortly after completing a graduate research project in molecular immunology, Jean Peccoud’s scientific interests shifted to computational biology. In 1989, he published one of the first articles describing a mathematical model of molecular noise in gene regulatory networks. In 1993, he recognized the importance of real-time PCR and developed new statistical techniques suitable to analyze this new type of data. In 2002, he observed with excitement the very early developments of synthetic biology. After exploring the potential applications of this new technology to plant biotechnology, he blazed a trail in synthetic biology informatics.

    Jean Peccoud came to Colorado State University from the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech. He brought with him a diverse experience that includes working for Fortune 500 and start-up companies. He is the founding Editor-in-Chief of the journal Synthetic Biology published by Oxford University Press.

  • Fumiaki Hamazato

    Senior Engineer, Technology Development Center, Innvation Division, Hitachi High-Technologies Corporation
    Professional Engineer, Japan (Biotechnology)

  • Visu Annaluru

  • Albert Lu

  • Sarah Glaven

    Dr. Sarah Glaven is a research biologist at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) with over 12 years of experience in the field of microbial electrochemistry and electromicrobiology, processes in which microorganisms are used to catalyze electrode reactions and transport electrons over micron size distances. Dr. Glaven is recognized worldwide as an expert in the basic science of this field and for her recent work using meta-omics to understand electron transfer and carbon fixation of a marine cathode bacterial biofilm community. Dr. Glaven has published over 35 peer-reviewed articles in microbial electrochemistry, work that has been cited over 1400 times. She also holds a patent on the use of biocathodes for microbial reductive dechlorination in contaminated groundwater (#8,277,657, “Systems and methods for microbial reductive dechlorination of environmental contaminants”). More recently, Dr. Glaven has begun incorporating tools and practices of synthetic biology in her research to engineer extracellular electron transfer (EET). She also currently serves on the editorial board of ASM’s mSystems, the new journal Biofilms, and is the current President of the International Society for Microbial Electrochemistry and Technology (ISMET).

  • J. Kenneth Wickiser

    Current: Associate Professor and Director of Life Science, Department of Chemistry and Life Science, West Point, NY
    2007-2012 Faculty, Department of Chemistry and Life Science, West Point, NY
    2004-2007 Postdoctoral Associate, Laboratory of Molecular Neuro-oncology, Rockefeller University, NY
    1999-2004 Graduate Student, Department of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry, Yale University, CT
    1992-1999 Army Officer, pilot, staff officer, ROTC instructor, AL, AZ, GA, and PR.
    1988-1992 Cadet, West Point, NY

  • Lawrence Kennedy

  • David Yuan

    I’m currently a scientist at Zymergen, primarily working on strain and metabolic engineering. My background is in molecular biology and evolutionary genetics. My PhD was on the impact of mutations and natural polymorphisms on gene expression in yeast, while my postdoc work was on using DNA barcoding and experimental evolution to study mutations that contribute to evolutionary adaptation. My expertise is in molecular biology, genetics, and microbiology.

  • Mike O’Keefe

    Dr. O’Keefe supports the Department of Defense in the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Chemical and Biological Defense, advising senior decision makers on science and technology, with an emphasis on synthetic biology and advanced biotechnologies. In prior positions, he supported the Department of Homeland Security and served a career as a military officer, culminating in directing the Defense Department’s Chemical and Biological Defense Science and Technology portfolio

  • Raja Srinivas

  • Alec Nielsen

  • Stacy-Anne Morgan

    Stacy-Anne Morgan is a Scientist at Zymergen. She received her MSc. (2005) and Ph.D. (2010) degrees from the Department of Chemistry at the University of Toronto where her work focused on engineering photocontrolled DNA-binding proteins. From 2011 to 2016, she was a postdoctoral researcher in Dave Savage’s group at the University of California, Berkeley where she worked on developing genetically encoded fluorescent sensors for metabolites. She is interested in working to increase diversity in STEM fields.

  • Steve Laderman

  • Emily Leproust

  • Naoya Kobayashi

  • Jussi Jantti

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