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Antiswitch-mediated regulation of gene expression. Antiswitch molecules are in an ‘off’ conformation (back right) when not bound to a small molecule ligand (green) and switch to an ‘on’ conformation upon ligand binding (middle left). In the ‘on’ conformation these molecules will bind to a target transcript (blue) to inhibit gene expression through antisense mechanisms (foreground).

The Smolke Lab is interested in using a combination of interdisciplinary approaches encompassing biomolecular engineering, biochemical engineering, and synthetic biology with a strong foundation in molecular biology, biochemistry, and chemical biology to study complex gene regulatory networks and develop sophisticated gene expression technologies. Our laboratory is part of the Bioengineering Department at Stanford University. A major focus of the lab is studying the bioactive properties of RNA and engineering RNA, and other bioactive molecules, into modular functional technology platforms for applications in metabolic engineering and circuit design, as well as medical applications focused on the molecular mechanisms of cancer and disease and developing effective therapies and treatments.

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