Kate Adamala

Kate Adamala

KATE ADAMALA

Assistant Professor
Genetics, Cell Biology, and Development

kadamala@umn.edu
protobiology.org

Research Interests

Synthetic cells, Cell-free protein expression, Engineering genetic pathways

Bio

Kate Adamala is a biochemist whose research focuses around building synthetic cells. Her lab studies the origin and early evolution of life, explores possibilities of using synthetic biology to colonize space, and aims to shape the future of biotechnology and medicine. The lab’s research utilizes synthetic cell technologies to make tools for metabolic engineering, drug development, and biosensing.

Alptekin Aksan

Alptekin Aksan

ALPTEKIN AKSAN

Professor
Department of Mechanical Engineering

PhD, Mechanical Engineering, Michigan State University, 2002

aaksan@umn.edu
biogels.umn.edu

Research Interests

Biopreservation and biothermodynamics; desiccation/vitrification kinetics of sugar glasses, molecular mobility; microelectromechanical systems; bioheat and mass transfer.

Bio

Alptekin Aksan is interested in the stabilization and transformation of proteins and membranes utilized in tissue engineering. Medical and biotechnological advances in the areas of cell-based therapies, tissue engineering, regenerative medicine, gene therapy, cell transplantation and biopharmaceutical research have increased the demand for successful stabilization of proteins, cells and organs during storage. Stabilization is necessary for protein- and cell-based therapies to be widely available, economical, efficient, and safe. Aksan is working to devise ways to process, store, transport, and distribute protein-based tissue products without the requirement for cryogenic temperatures.

Brett Barney

Brett Barney

BRETT BARNEY

Associate Professor
Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering

PhD, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Arizona State University, 2003

bbarney@umn.edu
barneybioproductslab.cfans.umn.edu

Research Interests

Biosynthetic pathways for commodity fuels and high-value products from bacteria and algae. Organisms from extreme environments and applications of these species in bioprocessing. Detailed understanding of symbiotic relationships between algae and bacteria. Basic evolutionary techniques related to novel protein design (directed evolution).

Bio

Brett Barney’s lab seeks to understand the role of select bacteria and algae in biosynthetic pathways, the biological nitrogen cycle, and biodegradation. He teaches courses focusing on the application of engineering principles in biological processes, 3D printing biomolecular models, and recycling raw materials.

Jannell Bazurto

Jannell Bazurto

JANNELL BAZURTO

Assistant Professor
Department of Plant and Microbial Biology

PhD, Microbiology, University of Wisconsin Madison, 2013

jbazurto@umn.edu
cbs.umn.edu/bazurto-lab

Research Interests

Regulatory mechanisms that allow organisms to thrive on potently toxic metabolites; bacterial physiology, metabolic stress, methylobacterium.

Bio

Jannell Bazurto is a bacterial physiologist with a rich background in using mutant analysis to understand cellular metabolism in model bacteria. Her lab seeks to define mechanisms by which organisms survive, and even thrive on, toxic metabolites. The lab’s research utilizes genetic, molecular biology, biochemistry and omics methodologies to define mechanistic processes and answer biological questions at the molecular and organismal level.

Sebastian Behrens

Sebastian Behrens

SEBASTIAN BEHRENS

Associate Professor
Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geo-Engineering

PhD, Molecular Microbial Ecology, University of Bremen, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, 2003

sbehrens@umn.edu
behrenslab.umn.edu

Research Interests

Microbial processes for bioremediation of (in)organic environmental contaminants (mining wastes, agriculture runoff) and the recovery of valuable resources from municipal/industrial wastes.

Bio

In his lab, Sebastian Behrens seeks to combine environmental biotechnology, engineering, biogeochemistry, and molecular biology. His research provides insights into the “lifestyle” of microorganisms by linking the quantification of microbiological processes to the in situ activity and dynamics of microbial populations at various temporal and spatial scales in natural and engineered environments.

Daniel Bond

Daniel Bond

DANIEL BOND

Professor
Department of Plant and Microbial Biology

PhD, Microbiology, Cornell University, 1999

dbond@umn.edu
thebondlab.org

Research Interests

Physiology and functional genomics of dissimilatory metal-reducing bacteria; Microbial interactions with electrodes

Bio

Daniel Bond is interested in the interface between microbiology and electricity. His lab studies the molecular and genetic basis for this metabolism, develops strategies to harness microbes for the capture of energy, and explores how this ability can be used at the bioelectrical interface. In his research, Daniel integrates microbial physiology, molecular biology, genetics, electrochemistry, genomics, and bioinformatics to unravel the complexities of electron transfer at the core of applications such as water treatment, desalination, and sensing.