Universal genetic parts for bacteria

This paper describes UBER, a set of universal genetic parts for bacteria.  This gene expression system for bacteria relying on a self-regulated T7 promoter. The advantage of this system is that it can be ported across species. The system is primed by using degenerate promoter sequences that works in many bacteria. The sequences were also […]

Security of Synthetic Biology

security of synthetic biology

The security of synthetic biology can be difficulty to assess. Last month we organized a week-long training on the security of synthetic biology for personnel of a government agency. This very hands-on training included wet lab activities to build a basic genetic circuit using a combination of de novo gene synthesis performed in house and […]

Synthetic Biology Security Course

synthetic biology security

Overview: Practical Introduction to Synthetic Biology Security Synthetic biology security can be difficult to assess. The emergence of synthetic biology is catalyzing a change of paradigms in life sciences. It supports the development of a new generation of biotechnology products, it enables radically new kinds of experiments in basic research, and it provides new training opportunities […]

Updated Team Page


We have updated the “people’s” page of the web site.  We renamed it “team” to better reflect the collaborative nature of our research projects. We have included on this page our main collaborators. We have also updated the section of the page with links to people we have worked with over the last 10 years […]

Leave it to chance or not

leave it to chance cover

Carolyn Beans wrote a blog post about our project to develop stochastic models of the regulatory network controlling cell division.  She was particularly interested in aspects of cell physiology that are affected by random events and how cells manage to remain healthy despite the vagaries of molecular interactions. Read her post on the NIGMS Biobeat […]

Sustainability of bioinformatics infrastructures

genomeweb logo

GenomeWeb published a long article about the sustainability of bioinformatics infrastructures based on the GenoCAD transition into a commercial product. The articles describes the challenges of finding the right business model allowing the scientific community who depends on the tools to access it without restriction while at the same time generating enough revenue to ensure […]

Language for plant synthetic biology

language for plant synthetic biology used to develop transgenic plants

Virginia Tech issued a press release describing the language for plant synthetic biology developed in collaboration with Anna Coll. Researchers at the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech and the Slovenia National Institute of Biology have developed a language for plant synthetic biology. Using the GenoCAD platform, a computer-assisted design application for synthetic biology developed at Virginia Bioinformatics […]

Virginia Tech announces GenoCAD transition


Virginia Tech issued a press-release announcing the transformation of GenoCAD into a commercial product. GenoCAD started as a NSF-funded research project. In 2010, we released the application open-source using the Apache 2.0 license. Open source licensing appeared to be the most favorable way of ensuring the long-term sustainability of this infrasture. After we created GenoFAB, […]