User:Adam B. Fisher

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Adam B. Fisher

Candidly counting colonies

In nature hybrid species are usually sterile, but in science the reverse is often true.
Hybrid subjects are often astonishingly fertile, whereas if a scientific discipline remains too pure it usually wilts.
- Francis Crick

What I cannot create, I cannot understand.
- Richard Feynman

I am very comfortable with the idea that we can override biology with free will.
- Richard Dawkins

As a researcher, I am broadly interested in integrating approaches and technologies found in synthetic and systems biology, metabolic engineering, chemical biology and quantitative biology to facilitate microbial engineering. At Virginia Tech, I had my first exposure to these emergent fields while working as an undergraduate to build out and characterize a bi-stable genetic toggle switch. Subsequently, I joined the lab of Dr. Stephen Fong at Virginia Commonwealth University endeavoring toward a PhD in Integrative Life Sciences. Currently, I am involved in projects involving ex vivo approaches for cloning and synthetic biology, a synthetic biomolecular delivery system and a cost analysis for the interpretation of genome-scale models. My research interests include:

  • Cell-Free and ex vivo approaches to molecular biology and biotechnology
  • Genome engineering and high-throughput cloning
  • Global physiology and single-cell characterization
  • Development of engineering platforms for exotic microorganisms
  • Engineered microbial consortia and microbiota
  • Synthetic metagenomics
  • Protein engineering
  • Construction and simulation of genome-scale models
  • Statistical modeling of biological sequences

Education & Training

Virginia Commonwealth University · Richmond, VA · 2011 — 2015

  • Ph.D. · Integrative Life Sciences
    • Advised by Stephen S. Fong

Virginia Tech · Blacksburg, VA · 2007 — 2011

  • B.S. · Biological Sciences
    • Concentration in Microbiology & Immunology
  • Minor · Business


  • Yu Deng, Fisher, AB and Fong, SS. "Systematic analysis of intracellular mechanisms of propanol production in the engineered Thermobifida fusca B6 strain". Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology (2015) doi:10.1007/s00253-015-6850-4[1]
  • Fisher, AB and Fong, SS. "Lignin biodegradation and industrial implications". AIMS Bioengineering (2014). 1(2): 92-112. doi:10.3934/bioeng.2014.2.92 [2]
  • Fisher, AB, Canfield, ZB, Hayward, LC, Fong, SS & McArthur IV, GM. "Ex vivo DNA assembly". Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology (2013). doi:10.3389/fbioe.2013.00012 [3]
  • Fisher AB, Vanee N, & Fong SS. “Evolutionary Engineering for Industrial Microbiology”. Subcellular Biochemistry: Reprogramming Microbial Metabolic Pathways (New York: Springer Verlag, 2012), Vol. 64. doi:10.1007/978-94-007-5055-5_3. [4]


  • Poster - DNA Assembly for free: using cellular lysates to decrease cloning costs, Synthetic Biology 6.0. Imperial College of London, UK 9-12 July 2013
  • Talk/Poster - Cyanobacteria: A sustainable manufacturing platform, iGEM Americas Regional Jamboree. Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis, Indianapolis, IN, 8-10 October 2011

Intellectual Property

  • Fisher AB, Brooks JP, Fong SS (2013) Cellular Strain Design Using Large-Scale Cost Analysis (Virginia Commonwealth University)