Medical Applications of Synthetic Biology

Genetically engineered immune cell represents one of the most promising cancer diagnostics and therapeutic modalities.  Unique to cell-based platforms is their ability to perform highly robust logical operations by sensing and responding to multiple stimuli in vivo, which can revolutionize medicine by providing unprecedented specificity.  However, even with recent advances in genetic engineering and genome editing, the technological barrier to creating combinatorial logic circuits in human primary immune cells remains immense.  In order to obtain the necessary precision required for effective tumor detection and elimination, my lab has embarked on an ambitious, design-driven research program to develop innovative technologies for next-generation therapeutics and diagnostics.