Programming Genomes to Re-engineer Life's Functional Repertoirs
The objective of my research funded by the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation is to develop foundational genome engineering technologies to construct genomically recoded organisms (GROs) possessing a new genetic code that impart novel and orthogonal biological function. Specifically, these GROs could enhance the incorporation of nonstandard amino acids (NSAAs) into proteins to expand the chemical diversity of the proteome and prevent the correct translation of exogenous genetic material, leading to the creation of virus resistant organisms. This research is based on my recent advances in developing genome engineering technologies capable of creating genetic diversity across genes, pathways and whole genomes, and constructing organisms with new genetic codes.
Arnold O. Beckman exemplifies the meaning of the word humanitarian. Combined with his unwavering enthusiasm for life, his keen sense of humor and his strong moral and ethical principles, he is a national icon.