VCU/Courses/Synthetic Biology Fundamentals

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Synthetic Biology Fundamentals

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Course Overview

This seminar course aims to introduce foundational concepts in synthetic biology and survey current synthetic biology research.

Synthetic biology is emerging as a rational, universal framework for designing and constructing biological systems by applying engineering principles such as standardization (e.g., of modular components) and abstraction (e.g., of complex systems) to biology with the aim of designing new biological components/systems or re-designing natural biological components/systems for novel purposes. This concept of synthetic biology is not a new one, but has recently been enabled by de novo DNA synthesis technology, the streamlined practice of recombinant DNA technology (i.e., genetic "engineering") and the knowledge generated by both molecular and systems biology. Novel biological systems may be engineered to solve industrial, medical and environmental engineering problems such as the biosensing and bioremediation of toxins, the microbial production of vaccines and drugs, and the biosynthesis of future transportation fuels.

Faculty instructor: Dr. Stephen Fong
Graduate instructor: George McArthur
Meeting times: MW 3-4:14



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