All CISAC News News November 23, 2021

Can Synthetic Biology Save Us? This Scientist Thinks So.

Drew Endy is squarely focused on the potential of redesigning organisms for useful purposes. He also acknowledges significant challenges.
Drew Endy

When the family house in Devon, Pa., caught fire, Drew Endy, then 12, carried out his most cherished possession — his personal computer.

Years later, as a graduate student, Mr. Endy was accepted to Ph.D. programs in biotechnology and political science.

The episodes seem to sum up Mr. Endy, a most unusual scientist: part engineer, part philosopher, whose conversation is laced with references to Descartes and Dylan, as well as DNA.

He’s also an evangelist of sorts. Mr. Endy, a 51-year-old professor of bioengineering at Stanford University, is a star in the emerging field of synthetic biology. He is its most articulate enthusiast, inspiring others to see it as a path to a better world, a transformational technology to feed the planet, conquer disease and combat pollution.

Continue reading here