Kirsten Benjamin, Vice President, R&D at Amyris, Inc
0:00 From biofuel to skincare
8:44 Rational vs random strain engineering
14:14 Genome-wide engineering aided by Inscripta technology
16:15 Amyris' vision for the future of synthetic biology
20:42 How do you select a product to pursue?
If a company knows genome engineering, that would be Emeryville based Amyris, the Bay Area's crown jewel for synthetic biology. Founded back in 2003, the company first worked on creating biofuels from yeast. Today they have retooled their platform to produce a diversified line of consumer products that have not only rewarded their bottom line but point the world to a model of sustainable consumer goods.
Today we talk with VP of R & D, Kristen Benjamin about the change over to the skin and beauty care products and the core ingredient of that product line, squalene, a substance that used to be farmed from shark liver. Kirsten was on the front lines of the pivot and takes us into the world of genome engineering at Amyris. New tools have made scaling up much easier today, thanks to a partnership with Inscripta for use of the new Onyx platform announced just this week.