SynBio Canada
SynBio Canada

Academic Profiles

Academic Profiles

Posts tagged #proteinengineering
Dr. Cesar de la Fuente-Nunez
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Assistant Professor, University of Pennsylvania

Email Address: cfuente@pennmedicine.upenn.edu

Bio: Our research focuses on the design of novel synthetic peptide molecules using principles inspired by synthetic biology, computational biology, and microbiology. Our current application areas include infectious diseases, antibiotic resistance, the microbiome, biomaterials and nanotechnology.

In particular, we focus on redesigning tiny proteins called peptides, which are the workhorses of life, and a source of biologically active molecules with under-explored therapeutic potential. The 20 natural amino acids that make up these molecules offer an almost unlimited number of combinations unparalleled by other polymers such as DNA (20n; n being the number of amino acids present in any given peptide chain). Many other non-canonical residues can also be incorporated into peptide chains via peptide design approaches. In addition, peptides are promising drugs because their primary amino acid sequences can be easily tuned to achieve specific biological functions inside living cells.

Despite their promise, peptide-based therapeutics have largely remained unexplored due to the limited diversity of naturally occurring peptide scaffolds, their cost, and a lack of methods to design them rationally. Using principles from peptide engineering, synthetic biology and computational biology, we investigate how simple nanopeptides may be exploited and rationally designed for a range of medical applications. In addition, we aim to build completely new protein/peptide structures not known to the biological world, and biomaterials for applications in synthetic biology, biotechnology and medicine.

Website: https://delafuentelab.seas.upenn.edu/

Dr. Vincent Martin
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Professor, Concordia University and Co-Director, Centre for Applied Synthetic Biology

Email Address: vincent.martin@concordia.ca

Bio: We are synthetic biologists with a strong penchant for metabolic engineering and industrial strain improvement. We like yeast but will play with other unicellular bugs as well.

Website: https://www.concordia.ca/research/casb.html

Dr. Ahmad Saleh
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Assistant Professor, Université Laval

Email Address: ahmad.saleh@bcm.ulaval.ca

Bio: Our research projects aim at developing synthetic biology strategies for the biosynthesis of fine chemicals, especially lipid-based drugs and biofuels, to render them accessible for human consumption. In addition, we work on the discovery/invention of new fine chemicals that satisfy emerging human needs in health, energy and bioremediation fields. Our research is conducted using synthetic biology (SB) approaches in microbial hosts as platforms, while aiming at a sustainable production of safe and ecological fine chemicals.

Website: http://abdel-mawgoud.com/

Dr. David Stuart
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Associate Professor, Department of Biochemistry, University of Alberta

Email Address: dtstuart@ualberta.ca

Bio: We investigate the potential application of synthetic biology for performing metabolic engineering of yeast, bacteria and cyanobacteria. Current applications include engineering oleaginous yeast and bacteria metabolic pathways for production of high value oleochemicals from cellulosic waste, engineering fermentation inhibitor tolerance into microbial cell factories, construction of microbial cell biosensors for the detection of human and agricultural pathogens, and engineering microbial cell for bioremediation applications.

Website: https://www.ualberta.ca/biochemistry/people/faculty/david-stuart

Dr. Wei Zhang
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Assistant Professor, University of Guelph

Email Address: weizhang8182@gmail.com

Bio: My lab opened in July 2018 at the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, University of Guelph. We are creating synthetic proteins using biomolecular engineering approaches to accelerate understanding of biology and development of novel therapeutics.

Website: www.thezhanglab.com

Twitter: @WeiZhangTO