Congratulations to Macquarie University Researchers Briardo Llorente and Thomas Williams, winners of prestigious CSIRO Future Science Fellowships.
Briardo and Thomas were among eleven researchers from universities across Australia to be included in the recent round of fellowships:
- Briardo for work on Synthebiont: Travelling back in time to the origin of photosynthetic eukaryotes
- Thomas for the project From one to many: Synthetic yeast chassis for C1 metabolism
Synthetic Biology is one of the fastest growing areas of modern science with a wealth of potential for developments in fields such as healthcare, industrial biotechnology, agriculture and food research.
Through its Synthetic Biology Future Science Platform (SynBio FSP), CSIRO is establishing a collaborative community of practice extending across the Organisation, Australia more broadly, and linking into international efforts in the field.
The fellowships are designed to position Australia as a major international leader in Synthetic Biology by attracting outstanding national and international early-career post-doctoral researchers to expand our research capacity in the field.
*What is Synthetic Biology?
Synthetic biology is essentially the application of engineering principles to biology.
It involves the design and construction of biological systems and devices, as well as the re-design of existing, natural biological systems, usually based on DNA-encoded componentry, and their application for useful purposes.
Components include DNA, RNA, and proteins (commonly enzymes); these are used to build genetic circuits encoding cellular machinery, which may be applied either in vivo (inside cells) or ex vivo (in test tubes or other non-cellular environments).
It is a highly interdisciplinary science, drawing on biology, engineering and computer science, as well as many other fields, and has potential application in areas as diverse as manufacturing, human health, agriculture and protecting ecosystems.
In Australia, there are a number of research and development projects in the design or implementation phase across agricultural, industrial and environmental applications.