Engineering Computation & Electrical Interfaces into Living Systems

Date: Tuesday October 21, 2008
Time: 12:10 noon -12:50pm + Discussions until 1:30pm
Location: Room 1003 Kemper

Speaker: Caroline Ajo-Franklin, Staff Scientist, The Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Title:

Engineering Computation & Electrical Interfaces into Living Systems
ECE overlap: Devices based on bio-organisms, reprogrammable microbes for technological devices, organic memory devices, organic-inorganic interfaces,
Abstract:

Over billions of years, organisms have honed precise synthesis and assembly of nanoscale machinery to perform diverse functions such as sensing, computation, and control of charge flow. The explosion of knowledge in cellular biology and the powerful tools of synthetic biology now allow us to alter such complex assemblies to perform new functions with ever-greater specificity. I will describe our overarching approach to reprogram microbes into technological devices and two specific applications: memory devices in living cells and microbe-to-electrode connections.

Bio: Caroline Ajo-Franklin received her PhD in 2004 in Biophysical Chemistry from Stanford University and was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Department of Synthetic Biology, Harvard Medical School. Since 2007, she is a Staff Scientist, The Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. Her research includes Electrical communication between living and non-living systems, Self-assembly of nanocircuits, Biotic control of geologic carbon dioxide