The 1st International BioDesign Research Conference

The 1st International BioDesign Research Conference

December 1st - 18th, 2020, Virtual

December 1st - 18th, 2020, Online

Eriko Takano

University of Manchester, UK

Potentials of synthetic biology for fine and speciality chemical production


We aim to design and construct organisms with new functionalities by exploiting synthetic biology for metabolic engineering in the context of chemical production. As a first step towards re-engineering these chemical pathways for enhanced productivity and diversity, we aim to understand the interchangeability of biosynthetic parts and have designed and assembled pathways using these parts (Cummings et al., PLOS Biol, 2019) and will engineer orthogonal circuits based on signalling molecule circuits (Biarnes-Carrera et al., ACS Synth Biol 2018). In addition, we are expanding our collection of computational tools for the detection and analysis of secondary metabolite biosynthesis gene clusters, to enrich our library of parts and building blocks for pathway engineering (Del Carratore et al., Commun Biol 2019). We use computational constraint-based modelling to pinpoint biosynthetic bottlenecks to target for further cellular engineering in a synthetic biology strategy (Amara et al., BMC Genomics 2018). We combine this analysis with high-resolution MS analysis, which we also employ for the debugging of the engineered systems (Nitta et al., Front Bioeng Biotechnol 2020). This finally leads to the completion of the cycle by learning rules for efficient design (Jervis et al., ACS Synth Biol 2018). By exploiting all these tools in the Design/Build/Test/Learn cycle, the Manchester Synthetic Biology Research Centre, SYNBIOCHEM, provides a platform for the high-throughput engineering of fine and speciality chemicals production in microbial systems (Carbonell et al., Communications Biology 2018; Robinson et al., Metab Eng 2020; Dunstan MS et al., Synthetic Biolog 2020).

Short Bio

Eriko Takano is a Professor at the University of Manchester, where she is Co-Director of the Manchester Synthetic Biology Research Centre SYNBIOCHEM. Takano studied pharmacy at Kitasato University in Tokyo before moving to the UK where she receiving her PhD in the School of Biological Sciences at the University of East Anglia and the John Innes Centre. She became Assistant Professor at the University of Tübingen and then Rosalind Franklin Fellow and Associate Professor at the University of Groningen. In 2012, she joined the University of Manchester as the Professor of Synthetic Biology. Since 2014, she became one of the three directors for the Manchester Synthetic Biology Research Centre, SYNBIOCHEM ( Her lab develops microbial synthetic biology tools and uses them to produce high-value chemicals.

For details of her research and recent publication, please visit HERE

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