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Spring 2008 3-3-3
Instructors: Drew Endy and Natalie Kuldell

  • Lecture: T/R 11:30-1 (26-152)
  • Studio: W 2-5 (26-152)

Welcome to 20.020! A project-based introduction to the engineering of synthetic biological systems. In this subject, you will have an opportunity to develop projects that are responsive to real-world problems, using solutions that depend on biological technologies. Through interactive lectures and studio time, you will learn techniques, strategies and vocabulary to enable the engineering of your synthetic biological system. These will be gained by considering

  • how biology can be made easier to engineer, including the use of DNA synthesis, standards, and abstraction in biological engineering
  • the consequences of success, introducing issues of human practice, including (a) biological safety, (b) security, (c) ownership, sharing, & innovation, and (d) ethics
  • the clever solutions that nature has found to solve physical challenges, specifically examining the components that control cellular behavior
  • the ways nature innovates, examining the evolution and reuse of good components as well as the reboot of living systems after catastrophic collapse

We hope this subject will provide an engaging introduction for would-be biological engineers as well as a foundational framework for anyone interested in the responsible and reliable programming of genetic material.

Homework dropbox for 20.020 can be found here
Homework dropbox for 20.902/947 can be found here