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Innovation by Evolution: Bringing New Chemistry to Life

Frances Arnold, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, U.S.A.

Innovation by Evolution: Bringing New Chemistry to Life

Not satisfied with nature’s vast catalyst repertoire, I want to create new protein catalysts and expand the space of genetically encoded enzyme functions. We use the most powerful biological design process, evolution, to optimize existing enzymes and invent new ones, thereby circumventing our profound ignorance of how sequence encodes function. Using mechanistic understanding and mimicking nature’s evolutionary design processes, we have generated whole new families of ‘carbene transferases’ and ‘nitrene transferases’ that catalyze chemical reactions not previously known in biology. These capabilities increase the scope of molecules and materials we can build using synthetic biology and move us closer to a sustainable world where chemical synthesis can be fully programmed in DNA.

Preliminary Programme

09:00 Coffee and mingle

09:30 Welcome & introduction to topic

09:40 Frances Arnold – Innovation by Evolution: Bringing New Chemistry to Life

10:20 Questions & Discussion

10:35 Coffee and mingle


Per-Olof Syrén, KTH/SciLifelab


Seats are limited and registration is mandatory.

Registration is now closed – the event is fully booked.