Synthetic Biology
Credit: Peter Allen

Researchers in synthetic biology couple a quantitative understanding of biology with fundamental engineering principles to create biological components and systems that do not exist in the natural world. Examples at UCSB include conformation-linked sensors that support continuous, real-time molecular measurements in the living body and the development of novel metabolic pathways (i.e., that do not occur in any single organism) for the production of fine chemicals and new energy sources.

Affiliated Faculty

Associate Professor
Mellichamp Chair in Systems Biology and Bioengineering
The Campas Lab studies the role of mechanics in shaping embryonic tissues and organs, as well as the relation between the genetic and mechanical control of embryonic development.
Associate Director, CBE
Professor, Chemistry & Biochemistry
In-vivo molecular measurements, anyone?
Associate Professor, Electrical & Computer Engineering
Co-Director, Brain Initiative
Advisory Board, Neuroscience Research Institute
We're generally interested in how the brain works, at the level of neurons and synapses.
Assistant Professor
Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology
We use photo-switchable proteins from plants to understand and control complex cellular behaviors.
Associate Professor
Chemical Engineering
Genetic engineering and synthetic biology of non-model microorganisms.
Assistant Professor
Chemical Engineering
Our research focuses on engineering genetic reporters for imaging what we think of as the "dark matter" of biology - living systems that cannot be readily imaged using existing reporter gene techniques.
Assistant Professor
Mechanical Engineering
How does life perform computation?