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Christina Agapakis  

Synthetic biology, microbial ecology, art-science collaboration, and cheese

Christina Agapakis is a biological designer whose research focuses on engineering new relationships between organisms, from the bacteria in our food and on our skin to photosynthetic animals. She received her Ph.D. in synthetic biology from Harvard in 2011 and is currently a research fellow and lecturer in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at UCLA. She explores the connections between art, design, science, and engineering as a Synthetic Aesthetics resident and on her blog at Scientific American.

Christina Agapakis is a biologist, writer, and artist interested in microbes and the future of biotechnology. She collaborates with engineers, designers, artists, and social scientists to explore the many unexpected connections between microbiology, technology, art, and popular culture. During her PhD at Harvard, she worked on producing hydrogen fuel in bacteria and making photosynthetic animals. She has taught designers at the Art Center College of Design and biomolecular engineers at UCLA, and she once made cheese using bacteria from the human body. She has written on biology, technology, and culture for a number of outlets and is a founding editor of Method Quarterly, a magazine about science in the making. As of 2017, she is currently creative director at Ginkgo Bioworks, an organism design company that is bringing biology to industrial engineering.


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