Seminar: 9:00am, November 10, Multi-functional Hall (2nd floor, South Building)

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Time: 9:00am, November 10 

Venue: Multi-functional Hall (2nd floor, South Building) 

Host: Prof. Hao Wang


Speaker 1: Zhuojun Dai, Ph. D,Institute of Synthetic Biology, SIAT, CAS

Title Versatile biomanufacturing through cell-material feedback   


A key focus of synthetic biology is to utilize modular biological building blocks to assemble the cell-based circuits. Scientists have programmed the living organisms using these circuits to attain multiple delicate and well-defined functions. With the integration of tools or technologies from other disciplines, these rewired cells can achieve even more complex tasks. In this talk, we will present our recent work in versatile biomanufacturing of biologics and functional material fabrication by integrating the engineered cells and polymer physics and chemistry. By exploiting cell-material feedback, we are able to design a concise platform to achieve versatile production, analysis, and purification of diverse proteins and protein complexes, and also assembly of functional living materials. Our work demonstrates the use of the feedback between living cells and materials to engineer a modular and flexible platform with sophisticated yet well-defined programmed functions.


Dr. Zhuojun Dai is currently an Associate Professor at the Institute of Synthetic Biology, Shenzhen Institutes of Advanced Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences. She received her Bachelor degree from Zhejiang University. She obtained PhD degree from The Chinese University of Hong Kong under the supervision of Prof Chi Wu, where she investigated the polymer chain dynamics, interactions between the polycations and polyanions and cell-material interactions from the view of polymer physics and chemistry. Then, she undertook postdoctoral training at Duke University in Prof Lingchong You's lab, where she integrated the stimulus-sensitive materials with synthetic gene circuit to build a versatile manufacturing platform. Since Sep, 2018, she started her lab in iSynBio, focusing on developing method in engineered microbial consortia assembly and living functional material fabrication.


Speaker2: Jin Geng, Ph. D, Institute of Biomedicine and Biotechnology, SIAT, CAS

Title Synthetic Chemistry in Living System


The cell is a tiny but complex reactor, which completes the life process through a series of complex chemical reactions (metabolic pathways) under mild conditions. From a chemical point of view, if we can replace flask with cell to do the chemical reaction. In this seminar, I will explore the design of fluorescent probes and drugs through in vivo chemistry and explore their applications in disease monitoring and treatment. I will mainly introduce (1) a photoactivated prodrug system based on controllable intracellular polymerization. This method successfully induces programmed cell death such as apoptosis and necrosis by in situ synthesis of high molecular polymers with controllable structures in tumor cells, and inhibits cell proliferation by interfering with the cell cycle. The most important thing is significant Inhibits the migration ability of tumor cells. (2) gamma/X-ray radiation is used to mediate the activation of two cancer prodrugs, thereby realizing precise and coordinated radiotherapy and chemotherapy..


Geng Jin received a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Warwick and supervised by Professor Dave Haddleton in the United Kingdom. Then, he was awarded the Isaacs Newton Trust Postdoc Fellowship by University of Cambridge to work with Professor Oren Scherman. He moved to GKN‘s R&D headquarters in the United Kingdom before he was awarded an EPSRC fellowship and worked at the University of Edinburgh. In 2019, he joined the Shenzhen Institute of Advanced Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences as a professor. He is now funded by the Chinese Academy of Sciences Hundred Talents, and the Pearl River Talents Program of Guangdong Province. He leads a diverse team of researchers focusing on in vivo chemistry, polymer chemistry, biomedicine technologies, and conducts research and development of diagnostic technologies and innovative drugs for tumors.


Speaker 3: Ji Liu, Ph. D,Southern University of Science and Technology

Title: Hydrogels with Unprecedented Mechanics for Human-Machine Interfacing


The human tissues and organs are mostly soft, wet and bioactive; however, machines are commonly hard, dry and biologically inert. Bridging human-machine interfaces is of importance to address those grand challenges in health, energy and suitability. Functional soft materials emerging at the interface between electronics and biological systems are challenging our fundamental knowledges, motivating technological innovations, and enabling impactful applications. Inspired by the nature’s design principles, a great variety of functional hydrogels with unprecedented properties and functions could be readily manufactured for human-machine interfacing. In this talk, I will mainly focus on how to engineer hydrogel materials with unprecedented mechanics, such high toughness and fatigue-resistant properties, by rational control of the multi-length scale structure. Such emerging soft materials could be further engineered as the ingestible electronics for long-term monitoring important physiological conditions and biomarkers, important loading bearing components for soft robots or hydrogel armours. Moreover, fatigue-resistant adhesion between soft materials and engineering matrix, i.e. metals, ceramics, elastomers, will also be discussed.


Dr Ji Liu is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering, Southern University of Science and Technology (Sustech, China). He obtained his PhD from the University of Liege (Belgium) and University of Bordeaux (France) under the framework of Erasmus Mundus Joint PhD program in 2013. Prior to joining Sustech, he conducted post-doc research in the University of Cambridge, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard Medical School. His research interest includes soft material engineering, extreme mechanics, tissue engineering, flexible electronics, and has published over 40 papers in those journals like Sci. Adv., Nat. Commun., Acc. Chem. Res., PNAS, Adv. Mater., JACS, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., Adv. Funct. Mater. He is also the recipient of several awards, including Innovators Under 35 of China by MIT Technology Review (2020), Guangdong Pearl River Talents Program Introduces High-Level Talents (2020), Overseas High-Caliber Personnel in ShenZhen (2020), Young Investigator Award by Japan Polymer Group (2017), Marie-Curie Research Fellow (2015), etc.



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