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Title: Proceedings of Synthetic Biology: Engineering, Evolution and Design (SEED) Conference 2015

Synthetic Biology is an emerging discipline that seeks to accelerate the process of engineering biology. As such, the tools are broadly applicable to application areas, including chemicals and biofuels, materials, medicine and agriculture. A characteristic of the field is to look holistically at cellular design, from sensing and genetic circuitry to the manipulation of cellular processes and actuators, to controlling metabolism, to programming multicellular behaviors. Further, the types of cells that are manipulated are broad, from in vitro systems to microbes and fungi to mammalian and plant cells and living animals. Many of the projects in synthetic biology seek to move biochemical functions across organisms. The field is highly interdisciplinary with faculty and students spread across departments that focus on engineering (biological, chemical, electrical, mechanical, civil, computer science) and basic science (biology and systems biology, chemistry, physics). While there have been many one-off workshops and meeting on synthetic biology, the 2014 Synthetic Biology: Engineering, Evolution and Design (SEED) was the first of an annual conference series that serves as a reliable place to pull together the involved disciplines in order to organize and exchange advances in the science and technology in the field. Further, the SEED conferences have a strongmore » focus on industry, with many companies represented and actively participating. A number of these companies have started major efforts in synthetic biology including large companies (e.g., Pfizer, Novartis, Dow, Dupont, BP, Total), smaller companies have recently gone public (e.g., Amyris, Gevo, Intrexon), and many start-ups (e.g., Teslagen, Refactored Materials, Pivot, Genomatica). There are a number of loosely affiliated Synthetic Biology Centers, including ones at MIT, Boston University, UCSD, UCSF, UC-Berkeley, Imperial College, Oxford, and ETH. SEED 2015 will serve as the primary meeting at which international synthetic biology centers and related infrastructure (synthesis/software/foundries) meet to discuss technology, standards, and education. SEED2015 will be the second in an annual series of meeting held to bring researchers from industry and academia in the area of Synthetic Biology. The first SEED conference was highly successful, attracting 285 attendees with varying backgrounds from academia, industry and government. The SEED series provides leadership in the development of the field of synthetic biology and serves to broaden the participants in the field by appealing to broad sectors in industry and providing a means for young investigators and those outside of the field to participate. Further, the series closely integrates with groups such as the SBCC to provide a means by which the synthetic biology community can communicate with policy makers. Further, we will pursue making the meeting the center for the exchange of educational materials as centers for synthetic biology emerge globally. Proceedings will be published each year in the journal ACS Synthetic Biology. After each SEED meeting, surveys are distributed to assess the success of the conference and to help guide changes year-to-year. The diverse application areas further extend the expertise needed from people in areas such as plant biology, agriculture and soil science, environmental science, medicine, and the chemical industry. These areas could have a widespread impact on society in a number of ways. For example, the CRISPR/Cas9 system that serves to immunize bacteria from phage has provided the fundamental chemistry that is used to edit the genomes of diverse organisms, including human stem cells, crop plants, and livestock animals.« less
 [1] ;  [2]
  1. Harvard Univ., Cambridge, MA (United States); SEED 2015 Conference Chair
  2. American Institute of Chemical Engineers; SEED 2015 Conference Organizer
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Journal Name:; Conference: 2015 Synthetic Biology: Engineering, Evolution & Design (SEED); Boston, MA, USA; June 10-13, 2015
Research Org:
American Institute of Chemical Engineers
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC)
Contributing Orgs:
J. Craig Venter Institute
Country of Publication:
United States
99 GENERAL AND MISCELLANEOUS; 42 ENGINEERING; 09 BIOMASS FUELS; 60 APPLIED LIFE SCIENCES; synthetic biology; bioengineering; systems modelling; biomedical applications; metabolic engineering; biological tools