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Synthetic Biology underpins advances in the bioeconomy

Biological systems - including the simplest cells - exhibit a broad range of functions to thrive in their environment. Research in the Imperial College Centre for Synthetic Biology is focused on the possibility of engineering the underlying biochemical processes to solve many of the challenges facing society, from healthcare to sustainable energy. In particular, we model, analyse, design and build biological and biochemical systems in living cells and/or in cell extracts, both exploring and enhancing the engineering potential of biology. 

As part of our research we develop novel methods to accelerate the celebrated Design-Build-Test-Learn synthetic biology cycle. As such research in the Centre for Synthetic Biology highly multi- and interdisciplinary covering computational modelling and machine learning approaches; automated platform development and genetic circuit engineering ; multi-cellular and multi-organismal interactions, including gene drive and genome engineering; metabolic engineering; in vitro/cell-free synthetic biology; engineered phages and directed evolution; and biomimetics, biomaterials and biological engineering.



BibTex format

author = {Foo, M and Sawlekar, R and Kim, J and Bates, DG and Stan, G-B and Kulkarni, V},
doi = {10.1109/ECC.2016.7810556},
pages = {1824--1831},
publisher = {IEEE},
title = {Biomolecular implementation of nonlinear system theoretic operators},
url = {},
year = {2017}

RIS format (EndNote, RefMan)

AB - Synthesis of biomolecular circuits for controlling molecular-scale processes is an important goal of synthetic biology with a wide range of in vitro and in vivo applications, including biomass maximization, nanoscale drug delivery, and many others. In this paper, we present new results on how abstract chemical reactions can be used to implement commonly used system theoretic operators such as the polynomial functions, rational functions and Hill-type nonlinearity. We first describe how idealised versions of multi-molecular reactions, catalysis, annihilation, and degradation can be combined to implement these operators. We then show how such chemical reactions can be implemented using enzyme-free, entropy-driven DNA reactions. Our results are illustrated through three applications: (1) implementation of a Stan-Sepulchre oscillator, (2) the computation of the ratio of two signals, and (3) a PI+antiwindup controller for regulating the output of a static nonlinear plant.
AU - Foo,M
AU - Sawlekar,R
AU - Kim,J
AU - Bates,DG
AU - Stan,G-B
AU - Kulkarni,V
DO - 10.1109/ECC.2016.7810556
EP - 1831
PY - 2017///
SP - 1824
TI - Biomolecular implementation of nonlinear system theoretic operators
UR -
UR -
UR -
ER -