Synthetic Biology and New Directions for HLBS Application Virtual Workshop

May 10 - 11, 2022
(May 10 - 12:00-5:30pm EST)
(May 11 - 12:00-5pm EST)


The potential for synthetic biology as a tool lies in its ability to design and build complex pathways with endogenous or novel functions and with predictable and quantitative responses to endogenous or environmental signals. In doing so, this new paradigm will allow for the testing of hypotheses on complex biological systems and the development of novel therapeutic strategies and diagnostic capabilities. To improve the reach and impact of engineering biology on human health, an integrative research plan based on collaborations of synthetic biologists with computational scientists, cell biologists, engineers, geneticists, developmental biologists, and/or physician scientists is strongly recommended. Gaining new insights into the complex and dynamic biological pathways of designer cells and tissues and developing cell-based and cell-free diagnostics and therapies are at the frontiers of biomedical science.

This workshop seeks to evaluate the promise of the emerging field of synthetic biology in advancing Heart, Lung, Blood and Sleep (HLBS) research and clinical applications. Synthetic biology (or engineering biology) is the design and construction of new biological processes and systems, and the redesign of existing and natural biological systems for a specific purpose. In contrast to conventional genetic engineering and molecular biology, which focus on individual genes, proteins, and mechanisms, synthetic biology employs a systematic approach for interrogating entire pathways, networks, and whole organisms with quantitative control and modulation. This workshop is a direct response to the ongoing challenge in biomedical research to quantitatively predict, test, and utilize these complex biological systems, and thus, NHLBI may capture fully the potential of these de novo biological systems.