Nicola Patron (Earlham Institute)
Thu 08 Oct 2020, 12:00 - 13:00
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Abstract: Plants provide the potential for rapid production of complex molecules from water and light but, until recently, we lacked the tools and data necessary for complex engineering of plant systems. The application of engineering principles to plant biology has enabled us to establish platforms for high­-throughput automated experimentation at nanoscales. We are combining these technologies with genome editing and comparative genomics to investigate how regulatory functions are encoded in plant DNA. We are applying our knowledge to engineer plants as photosynthetic biomanufacturing platforms and to improve agricultural and nutritional traits in crops.

Biography: Nicola Patron is a research group leader in plant molecular and synthetic biology at the Earlham Institute, an independent bioscience institute on the Norwich Research Park. Her group, established in 2016, investigates the regulation of gene expression and metabolic diversification and applies this knowledge to engineering plants as photosynthetic platforms for biomanufacturing and to improving the yield and nutritional value of crops. Nicola also co-directs the Earlham BIOFoundry, a facility developing automated, nanoscale workflows for biology and biotechnology. Nicola has a PhD in plant molecular biology and pursued postdoctoral research at The John Innes Centre and The University of British Columbia. As a 2015 SynBioLEAP fellow, Nicola was recognized as an emerging leader in synthetic biology.