Why Now?

The rapidly growing field of synthetic biology applies engineering principles to biology, with the goal of creating and redesigning biological components and systems that do not already exist in the natural world.

  • Innovations in synthetic biology will enable the world to prepare for the next epidemic or pandemic.
  • Advances in DNA synthesis are being used to develop advanced biofuels, bio-products, renewable chemicals, pharmaceutical intermediates, fine chemicals and food ingredients.
  • Developments in synthetic biology bring the potential for accidental or intentional release of pathogens and genetically modified organisms, with implications across national boundaries.
Gene editing technologies are taking the knowledge gained from CRISPR and moving it naturally into the next generation of disease monitoring, biotherapeutics, and vaccine production. Synthetic biology allows us to explore new efficiencies in medicine, life sciences, agriculture, and manufacturing.

Bonnie Glick

Director, Krach Institute for Tech Diplomacy