Metabolic Engineering 13

July 12-16, 2020

The Metabolic Engineering Conference is the world-leading conference to share premium developments and achievements in the field. 

Submit an Abstract

Conference Organizers


  • Hal Alper (University of Texas at Austin, USA)


  • Kristala Prather (Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), USA), Conference Co-Chair
  • Matthew Chang (National University of Singapore, Singapore), Poster Session Co-Chair
  • Sunil Chandran (Amyris Corporation, USA), Industrial Co-Chair

Organizing Committee:

Important Dates

Call for Abstracts

  • January 12: Oral Call for Abstracts Close 
  • February 28: Oral Abstract Acceptance
  • April 12: Poster and Rapid Fire Call for Abstracts Close
  • April 28: Poster and Rapid Fire Abstract Acceptance

Technical Program

  • April 1: Detailed Technical Program Announced


  • February 12: Registration Opens
  • June 12: Early Bird Registration Close

Featured Speakers

Maciek Antoniewicz

Prof. Maciek R. Antoniewicz is the Centennial (Endowed) Full Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Delaware. Dr. Antoniewicz earned his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Chemical Engineering from Delft University of Technology (2000), and his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2006). After graduating he performed post-doctoral research at DuPont Company. Dr. Antoniewicz started as an Assistant Professor in 2007 and was promoted to Associate Professor in 2013. In 2016, he was appointed as the Centennial (Endowed) Full...Read more

Gregg Beckham

Gregg T. Beckham is a Senior Research Fellow and Group Leader at NREL. He received his PhD in Chemical Engineering at MIT in 2007. He currently leads and works with an interdisciplinary team of biologists, chemists, and engineers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory on the development of green processes and products using chemistry and biology, including in the areas of biomass conversion and plastics upcycling.Read more

Lars Blank

Lars M. Blank studied Chemical Engineering from 1990 to 1997 at the University of Dortmund (Germany) and Biology from 1992 to 1997 at the Ruhr-University of Bochum (Germany). During his master theses he worked in the field of Metabolic Engineering in the group of Prof. E. T. Papoutsakis at Northwestern University, IL, USA and in yeast cell biology in the group of Prof. W.-H. Kunau at the Ruhr-University of Bochum. In his Ph.D. in the group of Prof. L. K. Nielsen at the University of Queensland, Australia (1998 to 2002), he developed a continuous process for hyaluronic acid production using...Read more

Irina Borodina

Dr. Irina Borodina is Senior Scientist and Group Leader at the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability, Technical University of Denmark (DTU). Her research focuses on advancing the methodologies for metabolic engineering of yeast cell factories for the sustainable production of bulk and high-value chemicals. She received a Chemical Engineering degree from Kaunas University of Technology in Lithuania in 2001 and a PhD degree in Biotechnology from DTU in 2007. Dr. Borodina has authored 45 peer-reviewed articles, which have been cited over 2,300 times, she is co-inventor of 12...Read more

Pablo Carbonell

Pablo is a senior staff scientist at SynBioChem Centre, Manchester Institute of Biotechnology. His field of research is automated design for metabolic engineering and synthetic biology. Pablo has developed several bioretrosynthesis-based pathway design tools, including RetroPath, XTMS, EcoliTox, enzyme selection Selenzyme and protein design Promis. Pablo is interested in applying the principles of machine learning and control engineering to sustainable biological design. He has contributed to the development of several theoretical models for bio-based, bionics systems; from biosensors to...Read more

Sunil Chandran

Sunil Chandran, Ph.D., is Senior Vice President and Head of R&D at Amyris, Inc., where he oversees the development of microorganisms that efficiently convert plant-derived feedstocks to a chemicals for use in a wide range of applications including pharmaceuticals, fuels, fragrances, food, nutraceuticals, and cosmetics among many others. He has more than 15 years of experience in industrial biotechnology, with a proven track record of bringing multiple biotech products to market. He has more than 20 published scientific papers and patents. He holds a BS in chemistry from the University...Read more

Matthew Chang

Matthew Chang is Associate Professor in Biochemistry in the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine at the National University of Singapore (NUS), and Director of the Singapore Consortium for Synthetic Biology (SINERGY), Wilmar-NUS Corporate Laboratory (Wil@NUS) and NUS Synthetic Biology for Clinical and Technological Innovation (SynCTI).

His research interests lie in the development of biological systems that perform programmable functions. In particular, he has pioneered the development of microbial cells programmed to perform targeted therapeutic functionalities. His scientific...Read more

Jed Dean

At Zymergen, Jed is responsible for building and operating the robotic workflows for genome engineering and high throughput screening. Prior to his work at Zymergen, he developed technology and automation for life sciences at Amyris and at the Stanford Genome Technology Center. He earned his bachelor’s degree in molecular biology from Purdue University and has a PhD in biochemistry from the Stanford University School of Medicine.Read more

Paul Freemont

Professor Paul Freemont is the co-founder of the Imperial College Centre for Synthetic Biology and Innovation (2009) and co-founder and co-director of the National UK Innovation and Knowledge Centre for Synthetic Biology (SynbiCITE; since 2013) and Director of the London BioFoundry (since 2016) at Imperial College London. He is also currently the Head of the Section of Structural Biology in the new Department of Infectious Diseases at Imperial. He was previously the Head of the Division of Molecular Biosciences at Imperial (2005-2012), Head of the Imperial College Centre for Structural...Read more

Audrey Gasch

Audrey Gasch is a Professor of Genetics in the Laboratory of Genetics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is the director of Genome Center of Wisconsin and the Director of Graduate Studies in Genetics at the university as well.

Professor Gasch's lab combines functional and comparative genomics with computational and molecular biology, for a systems-wide view of eukaryotic stress defense and signaling. Specifically, they focus on how cells sense their environment, detect when there is a problem, and then mount a multi-faceted response to protect themselves against stress...Read more

Jennifer Holmgren

Dr. Jennifer Holmgren is the Chief Executive Officer of LanzaTech leading the company’s global management team and setting the strategic direction.Read more

Michael Jewett

Michael Jewett is the Charles Deering McCormick Professor of Teaching Excellence, a Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering, and co-director of the Center for Synthetic Biology at Northwestern University. He is also an Institute Fellow at the Northwestern Argonne Institute for Science & Engineering. 

Dr. Jewett’s lab seeks to re-conceptualize the way we engineer complex biological systems for compelling applications in medicine, materials, and energy by transforming biochemical engineering with synthetic biology. Dr. Jewett is the recipient of the NIH Pathway to...Read more

Katy Kao

Katy Kao is an associate professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering at Texas A&M University. She received a B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of California, Irvine and a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of California, Los Angeles. Her work focuses on microbial adaptation for biotechnology and biomedicine. She was awarded the National Research Service Award by the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation CAREER Award, the TEES Young Select Faculty, and several teaching awards, including the Fluor...Read more

Jay Keasling

Jay Keasling is the Philomathia Professor of Alternative Energy at the University of California, Berkeley in the Departments of Bioengineering and Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, senior faculty scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and Chief Executive Officer of the Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI). Dr. Keasling’s research focuses on the metabolic engineering of microorganisms for degradation of environmental contaminants or for environmentally friendly synthesis of drugs, chemicals, and fuels.Read more

Hiroyuki Kojima

Dr. Hiroyuki Kojima is a corporate senior vice president and general manager of the R&D Planning Department at Ajinomoto Co., Inc. He received his bachelors, masters and doctorate degrees in Agricultural Chemistry from the University of Tokyo.

He has held numerous positions at Ajinomoto. He began his career as a principle researcher in the company’s central research laboratories. Later advancing to an engineering position at Ajinomoto Eurolysine, followed by deputy general director in Genetica Research Institute, general manager of Fermentation and Biotechnology Lab, general...Read more

Akihiko Kondo

Akihiko Kondo received his Ph.D. from Kyoto University in Chemical Engineering (1988). He was appointed as full professor of Kobe University in 2003 and also appointed as a team leader of the cell factory research team at RIKEN institute (Yokohama) in 2012. A. Kondo has developed various platform technologies such as cell surface display systems, metabolic pathway design tools, metabolic analysis technologies, genome editing and long chain DNA synthesis technologies and applied for construction of various microbial cell factories. A.
Kondo has been appointed as editor or editorial...Read more

Sang Yup Lee

Dr. Sang Yup Lee is Distinguished Professor at the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST). He is currently the Dean of KAIST Institutes, Director of BioProcess Engineering Research Center, and Director of Bioinformatics Research Center. He served as a Founding Dean of College of Life Science and Bioengineering. He has published more than 630 journal papers, 82 books/book chapters, and more than 680 patents, many of which licensed. He received numerous awards, including the National Order of Merit, National Science...Read more

James C. Liao

Professor Liao received his B.S. degree from National Taiwan University and Ph.D. from University of Wisconsin-Madison. After working as a research scientist at Eastman Kodak Company, Rochester, NY, he started his academic career at Texas A&M University in 1990 and moved to University of California, Los Angeles in 1997. He was Ralph M. Parsons Foundation Chair Professor and Department Chair of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering until 2016. He has served as President of Academia Sinica in Taiwan since June 2016.

Professor Liao is a member of the US National Academy of Sciences...Read more

Victor de Lorenzo

Professor Victor de Lorenzo is a member of the European Academy of Microbiology (EAM). The EAM is a leadership group of around 130 eminent microbiology experts who came together in 2009 to amplify the impact of microbiology and microbiologists in Europe. He is a lead researcher within the Systems Biology Program at the Centro Nacional de Biotecnología (CSIC) in Madrid.

His current research focus involves deep engineering of soil bacteria both as cell factories for industrial biotransformations and as agents for environmental bioremediation and valorisation of toxic waste. Other...Read more

Michael Lynch

Mike is an Assistant Professor and the Hunt Faculty Scholar in the Departments of Biomedical Engineering and Chemistry at Duke University. Work in the Lynch lab is focused on developing advanced tools for metabolic engineering with a long-term goal to develop readily accessible tools for the predictable rational design of industrial strains. These tools are being developed alongside key applications ranging from the production of biofuels and chemicals to next-generation therapeutics and materials. Mike has recently co-founded DMC Biotechnologies Inc., a start-up commercializing dynamic...Read more

Jens Nielsen

Jens Nielsen has received numerous Danish and international awards including the Villum Kann Rasmussen’s Årslegat, Merck Award for Metabolic Engineering, Amgen Award for Biochemical Engineering, Nature Mentor Award, the Gaden Award, the Norblad-Ekstrand gold medal, the Novozymes Prize, the ENI Award and the Eric and Sheila Samson Prize. He is member of several academies, including the National Academy of Engineering and National Academy of Sciences in USA, the Royal Swedish Academy of Science, the Royal Danish Academy of Science and Letters, the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences and the American Academy of Microbiology. He is a founding president of the International Metabolic Engineering Society.Read more

Lars Nielsen

Lars Nielsen is Chair of Biological Engineering at the Australian Institute for Bioengineering & Nanotechnology and a Scientific Director at the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability in Denmark. He is Director of the Bioplatforms Australia Industrial Biotechnology Node, which provides systems and synthetic biology support to design and build cell factories for the production of fuels, chemicals and pharmaceuticals.

His core research interest is modelling of cellular metabolism and his team has made many contributions to the formulation and use of genome scale...Read more

Katharina Nöh

Katharina Nöh is the Head of Team Modeling of Biochemical Networks and Cells in the IBG-1: Biotechnology at Research Centre Jülich. Her research objective is to develop and advance computational approaches to understand and infer biological processes by means of network models and data. To this end, Katharina is working at the intersection of applied mathematics, statistics and computational engineering science. Katharina’s team has a strong focus on 13C Metabolic Flux Analysis, maintaining the high-performance simulation suite 13CFLUX2 for the community, and information visualization (...Read more

Sarah O'Connor

Prof. Dr. Sarah Ellen O’Connor is Director of the Department of Natural Product Biosynthesis at the Max Planck Institute of Chemical Ecology (Jena, Germany). She obtained her PhD in Organic Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2001, and was an ACS Irving Sigal post-doctoral fellow at the Department of Biological Chemistry at Harvard Medical School (Boston, USA) from 2001-2003. From 2003-2011 she was Assistant and Associate Professor of Chemistry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, from 2011-2019 she was a Project Leader and Professor in the Department of...Read more

Sven Panke

Sven Panke is a Full Professor in the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering at Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH) Zurich. His research focuses on the design of novel bioprocesses for the pharmaceutical and chemical industries. His lab addresses fundamental issues in biocatalyst discovery, biocatalyst engineeirng and process engineering. His work has been published in numorous journals with over 5,700 citations and an h-index of 36.

Dr. Panke is the receipient of DSM Research Award and the ETH Silver medal. He received his Ph.D. from the Institute of Biotechnology...Read more

Jack Pronk

Jack Pronk is professor in Industrial Microbiology and head of the Biotechnology Department at TU Delft. His research is aimed at understanding and improving microbial performance in industrial processes and integrates quantitative physiology, genomics, synthetic biology and evolutionary engineering.  Jack (co-)authored 270 scientific publications and is an inventor on 25 patent applications. Results from his team’s research on engineering of yeast for alcoholic fermentation of pentose sugars and for improvement of ethanol yields from first and second generation...Read more

Jennifer Reed

Jennifer Reed is a Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her research interests involve building, analyzing, and utilizing metabolic and regulatory models of organisms involved in bioremediation, biofuels, and pharmaceutical applications.Read more

Susan Rosser

Susan is Professor of Synthetic Biology at the University of Edinburgh. She is Director of the Edinburgh Mammalian Synthetic Biology Research Centre, Co-director of the Edinburgh Genome Foundry for synthetic DNA synthesis and assembly. She also holds a prestigious EPSRC Leadership Fellowship in Synthetic Biology. Her research focuses on developing tools for synthetic biology approaches for pathway and genome engineering in bacteria, yeast and mammalian cell systems. The applications of her work include rapid strain engineering for production of high value secondary metabolites, cell lines for protein production, engineering bacteria to generate electricity and developing genetic tools for bio-computation: engineering cells to sense, process and memorise information.Read more

Elizabeth Sattely

Dr. Elizabeth Sattely, an Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering at Stanford, began her appointment in January 2011 after completing a Damon Runyon Postdoctoral Fellowship at Harvard Medical School in the laboratory of Christopher T. Walsh. Dr. Sattely’s postdoctoral research focused on elucidating microbial pathways for making complex natural products. She earned her PhD in synthetic chemistry in 2007 from Boston College with Amir H. Hoveyda, where she developed new methods for small molecule synthesis using molybdenum-catalyzed olefin metathesis. The Sattely lab focuses on the...Read more

Smita Shankar

My name is Smita Shankar and I am Director of Research at Impossible foods.

Animal farming is one of the largest contributors to global climate change. At Impossible foods, we’re trying to reduce the impact of animal farming on the planet by creating a delicious burger made entirely out of plant materials. A key driver of flavor in beef is heme, a molecule found in animal muscle. We use yeast fermentation to make soybean Leghemoglobin, the heme protein that is the key ingredient of the Impossible burger.

My background is in molecular biology and yeast genetics. I joined IF as...Read more

Pamela Silver

Pamela Silver is the Elliot T and Onie H Adams Professor of Biochemistry and Systems Biology in the Department of Systems Biology at Harvard Medical School. She is also a member of the Harvard University Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering. Her group combines lessons from Nature to the design of new organisms for both discovery and applications.Read more

Christina Smolke

Christina D. Smolke is Professor, Associate Chair of Education, and W.M. Keck Foundation Faculty Scholar in the Department of Bioengineering and, by courtesy, Chemical Engineering at Stanford University. Christina’s academic research program develops foundational tools that drive transformative advances in our ability to engineering biology.

Professor Smolke's research program focuses on developing modular genetic platforms for programming information processing and control functions in living systems, resulting in transformative technologies for engineering, manipulating, and...Read more

Gregory Stephanopoulos

Gregory N. Stephanopoulos is the 2016 AIChE President and the W. H. Dow Professor of Chemical Engineering at MIT. After obtaining his chemical engineering doctorate at Univ. of Minnesota, he taught at Caltech before joining MIT in 1985. His research focuses on metabolic engineering — the engineering of microbes to convert them to chemical factories for the production of fuels and chemicals. He has co-authored or edited five books, including co-authoring the first textbook on Metabolic Engineering, 450 papers, 50 patents, and supervised more than 150 graduate students and post-docs. He is...Read more

Karsten Temme

Karsten Temme, Ph.D. is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Pivot Bio, a microbe company commercializing the world's first replacement for chemical fertilizer. Driven by a vision of a more sustainable food system, Dr. Temme has spent most of his career translating new technology into commercial solutions that improve financial and environmental outcomes for farmers.

During his doctoral work in the University of California-Berkeley Joint Graduate Group in Bioengineering, Dr. Temme invented a breakthrough technology that enables cereal crops to self-fertilize, and co-founded...Read more

Claudia Vickers

Associate Professor Vickers holds dual roles as Director of the Synthetic Biology Future Platform at CSIRO (Australia’s Federal research agency) and Group Leader at The University of Queensland’s Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (AIBN).

She completed her PhD in cereal crop biotechnology at CSIRO Plant Industry and UQ in 2004. She held a post-doctoral positions at The University of Queensland and Essex University where she worked on abiotic stress and the metabolic regulation and physiological function of volatile isoprenoids in plants. She returned to...Read more

Chris Voigt

Professor Voigt obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and a PhD in Biochemistry and Biophysics at the California Institute of Technology.Read more

Christoph Wittmann

At present, Christoph Wittmann is professor and director of the Institute of Systems Biotechnology at Saarland University, Saarbrücken. Prior to his current position, he received his PhD in biotechnology at the German Research Institute for Biotechnology (GBF) in Braunschweig, was postdoc at the University of Helsinki, professor for biotechnology at Münster University, professor and director of the Institute of Biochemical Engineering, as well as co-founder of the Systems Biology Centre and the Centre for Pharmaceutical Engineering at Braunschweig Technical University in Germany.

...Read more

Marcel Wubbolts

Marcel Wubbolts holds a PhD from the department of Biochemistry, University of Groningen, NL, and was Post-Doctoral research associate and subsequently Assistant Professor at the Institute of Biotechnology at the ETH in Zürich, CH leading a research group on biocatalyst development and remained there until late 1997. Following his positions in academia, he joined the Life Sciences and Material Sciences company DSM in Geleen, where he has held several positions including that of Chief Technology Officer.

As Chief Technology Officer, Marcel is responsible for Corbion’s global Science...Read more

Ying-Jin Yuan

Ying-Jin Yuan is a Professor of Biochemical Engineering and Vice President of Research at Tianjin University. He is also the Director for Key Lab of Systems Bioengineering (Ministry of Education) and Dean of Institute of Science and Technology Development at the university. Dr. Yuan received his Bachelors, Masters, and Ph.D. from Tianjin University.

His previous appointments include being Director of Science and Technology Division, Dean of School of Chemical Engineering and Technology, Vice-chair of Department of Biochemical Engineering, Chairman of Institute of Nature...Read more