MemCom, Individual

  • Michelle O’Malley

    Michelle A. O’Malley is an Associate Professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of California, Santa Barbara. She earned a B.S. in Chemical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University in 2004 and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Delaware in 2009, where she worked with Prof. Anne Robinson to engineer overproduction of membrane proteins in yeast. O’Malley was a USDA-NIFA postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Biology at MIT and the Broad Institute, where she developed new strategies for cellulosic biofuel production. At UCSB, her research group develops synthetic biology tools to engineer protein synthesis within anaerobes and microbial consortia for sustainable chemical production, bioremediation, and natural product discovery. O’Malley’s research has been featured on NPR’s Science Friday, the BBC Newshour, the LA Times, and several other media outlets. She was named one of the 35 Top Innovators Under 35 in the world by MIT Technology Review in 2015, and is the recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), a DOE Early Career Award, an NSF CAREER award, the Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award, the ACS BIOT Division Young Investigator Award, the ACS PMSE Division Young Investigator Award, an ACS WCC “Rising Star” Award, and a Hellman Faculty Fellowship.

  • John Glass

    John Glass

    Dr. John Glass is a Professor and leader of the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI) Synthetic Biology and Bioenergy Group. His expertise is in molecular biology, microbial pathogenesis, RNA virology, and microbial genomics. Glass is part of the Venter Institute team that created the first bacterial cell with a chemically synthesized genome and a bacterial cell with a synthetic genome encoding only the essential gene set needed for life. In reaching this milestone the Venter Institute scientists developed the fundamental techniques of the new field of synthetic genomics including genome transplantation and genome assembly. Glass was also leader of the JCVI project that rapidly made synthetic influenza virus vaccine strains in collaboration with Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics, Inc. and Synthetic Genomics, Inc. At the JCVI he has also led the bacterial outer membrane vesicle based vaccine, genome transplantation, and Mycoplasma genitalium minimal genome projects, and projects studying other mycoplasma and ureaplasma species. Glass and his Venter Institute colleagues are now using synthetic biology and synthetic genomics approaches developed at the JCVI to create cells and organelles with redesigned genomes to make microbes that can produce biofuels, pharmaceuticals, and industrially valuable molecules. Glass is an adjunct faculty member of the University of Maryland at College Park Cellular and Molecular Biology Program, one of the founding members of the Build-A-Cell program to create synthetic cells, and member of the Global Viral Network Scientific Leadership Board.

    Prior to joining the JCVI, Glass spent five years in the Infectious Diseases Research Division of the pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly. There he was a member of the hepatitis C virology group and a microbial genomics group (1998-2003). There Glass was part of the Lilly and Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc. team that developed Incivek, one of the first drugs to cure hepatitis C virus.
    Glass earned his undergraduate (Biology) and graduate degrees (Genetics) from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His Ph.D. work was on RNA virus genetics in the laboratory of Gail Wertz. He was on the faculty and did postdoctoral fellowships in the Microbiology Department of the University of Alabama at Birmingham in polio virology with Casey Morrow and mycoplasma pathogenesis with Gail Cassell (1990-1998). On sabbatical leave in Ellson Chen’s lab at Applied Biosystems, Inc. (1995-1997) he sequenced the genome of Ureaplasma parvum and began his study of bacterial genomics.

  • Maitreya Dunham

    The Dunham lab uses synthetic biology, evolution, and genomics to understand how genome variation works in yeast and humans. In service of this goal, we also build tools, both physical devices for continuous culture and DNA gadgets for yeast genetics.

  • Vincent Noireaux

    Vincent Noireaux got his B.Sc. in applied physics at the University of Tours (France) in 1994. In 1995 he moved to Paris for physics graduate school at the University Paris 11 (Orsay). He did his PhD at the Curie Institute (Paris, 1996-2000) in biological physics in the laboratory of Jacques Prost on the motion of the bacterium Listeria. He studied the actin cytoskeleton mechanisms involved in cell motility and learned the biology related to this project in the laboratory of Daniel Louvard. In 2000 he joined the laboratory of Albert Libchaber at the Rockefeller University in New York City where he spent five years as a postdoc. He used cell-free expression systems to construct elementary gene networks and synthetic cell systems. In 2005, he moved to the University of Minnesota where he is pursuing his work in synthetic biology using cell-free expression. His research consists of constructing and characterizing biochemical systems by executing synthetic DNA programs in vitro, from simple regulatory elements to synthetic cells.

  • Joshua Leonard

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