In a series of webcasts, Agile BioFoundry (ABF) management and research teams (i) outline the vision, operation, and long-term goals of the distributed biofoundry, (ii) describe the various mechanisms for collaborating with the ABF, and (iii) highlight research capabilities that may be of interest to the biomanufacturing community. Each webcast is approximately 10 minutes long and is meant to be only an introduction to each of the topics. Please feel free to reach out to any of the webcast presenters for more information or submit questions about these topics here.
In this short introductory video, Nathan Hillson, Principal Investigator of the ABF, provides a high-level overview of the consortium’s vision, task structure, management, and long-term goals. In addition to highlighting many of the foundry’s capabilities and successful collaborations with industry and academia, Dr. Hillson provides an overview of currently funded research areas through fiscal year 2021.
If you are interested in working with the ABF, then this webcast by Project Manager James Gardner is recommended. In this detailed tutorial video, Dr. Gardner describes the various mechanisms that exist for collaborating with the ABF in propelling biomanufacturing forward in the private and public sectors. He discusses the pros and cons of various collaborative research agreements and highlights those that leverage public funds to enable technology advancement while preserving private investment. Several success stories are highlighted in the process, and we encourage you to consider submitting a proposal to our current Directed Funding Opportunity if your team is considering taking advantage of ABF expertise in fiscal year 2021 or beyond.
As predictable process scaling continues to be a bottleneck for the biomanufacturing industry, the ABF is engaged in research to understand scaled operations parameters by comparing identically performed fermentation runs at multiple sites. In this video that outlines the fermentation capabilities of the ABF, Deepti Tanjore, one of the Leads for our Process Integration and Scaling Task, describes scaled fermentation runs for the production of aconitic acid by the filamentous fungus Aspergillus niger and compares bioreactor operations at National Renewable Energy Laboratory and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory facilities for the production of muconic acid by Pseudomonas putida.
In efforts to decrease the timeline of bioprocess scale-up for a wide range of potential products, researchers within the Agile BioFoundry are cultivating metabolic engineering strategies that enable production targets associated with various beachhead molecules (metabolic intermediates that can be converted into several bioproducts). In this video, Christopher Johnson from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory outlines how development of a strain for producing one particular target associated with a beachhead can enable rapid development of other related bioproducts, leveraging commonalities in metabolic engineering, process scale-up strategies, and techno-economic/life cycle analyses.