Bioengineering

Stanford researchers genetically engineer yeast to produce opioids

Print view
Type: 
Research Profile

It typically takes a year to produce hydrocodone from plants, but Christina Smolke and colleagues have genetically modified yeast to make it in just a few days. The technique could improve access to medicines in impoverished nations, and later be used to develop treatments for other diseases.

Slug: 
Genetically engineered yeast produce painkillers
Short Dek: 
Genetically engineered yeast can produce complex plant-based medicines

For thousands of years, people have used yeast to ferment wine, brew beer and leaven bread.

Now researchers at Stanford have genetically engineered yeast to make painkilling medicines, a breakthrough that heralds a faster and potentially less expensive way to produce many different types of plant-based medicines.

Last modified Mon, 17 Aug, 2015 at 8:48

Stanford engineers develop a wireless, fully implantable device to stimulate nerves in mice

Print view
Type: 
Research News

A blue glowing device the size of a peppercorn can activate neurons of the brain, spinal cord or limbs in mice and is powered wirelessly using the mouse's own body to transfer energy. Developed by a Stanford Bio-X team, the device is the first to deliver optogenetic nerve stimulation in a fully implantable format.

Slug: 
Stanford engineers crate optogenetic nerve stimulation device

A miniature device that combines optogenetics – using light to control the activity of the brain – with a newly developed technique for wirelessly powering implanted devices is the first fully internal method of delivering optogenetics. 

The device dramatically expands the scope of research that can be carried out through optogenetics to include experiments involving mice in enclosed spaces or interacting freely with other animals. The work is published in the Aug. 17 edition of Nature Methods.

Last modified Mon, 17 Aug, 2015 at 16:09

Stanford research suggests football helmet tests may not account for concussion-prone actions

Print view
Type: 
Research News

Mounting evidence suggests that concussions in football are caused by the sudden rotation of the skull. David Camarillo's lab at Stanford has evidence that suggests current football helmet tests don't account for these movements.

Slug: 
Football Helmet Tests Questioned
Short Dek: 
Stanford research suggests the tests may not account for concussion-prone actions.

When modern football helmets were introduced, they all but eliminated traumatic skull fractures caused by blunt force impacts. Mounting evidence, however, suggests that concussions are caused by a different type of head motion, namely brain and skull rotation.

Now, a group of Stanford engineers has produced a collection of results that suggest that current helmet-testing equipment and techniques are not optimized for evaluating these additional injury-causing elements.

Last modified Mon, 20 Jul, 2015 at 12:16

Leonardo Art/Science Evening Rendezvous (LASER Series)

Print view
    Leonardo Art Science Evening RendezvouxThursday, August 13, 2015
    7:00 pm
    Li Ka Shing, Room 120

 

Date/Time: 
Thursday, August 13, 2015. 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Sponsors: 
Office of Science Outreach
Contact Info: 
scaruffi@stanford.edu
Admission: 
Free, open to the public

Last modified Fri, 10 Jul, 2015 at 10:47

Just add water: Stanford engineers develop a computer that operates on water droplets

Print view
Type: 
Research News

Manu Prakash, an assistant professor of bioengineering at Stanford, and his students have developed a synchronous computer that operates using the unique physics of moving water droplets. Their goal is to design a new class of computers that can precisely control and manipulate physical matter.

Slug: 
Water Droplet Computer
Short Dek: 
Assistant Professor Manu Prakash and his students have developed a computer that operates on the physics of water droplets.

Computers and water typically don't mix, but in Manu Prakash's lab, the two are one and the same. Prakash, an assistant professor of bioengineering at Stanford, and his students have built a synchronous computer that operates using the unique physics of moving water droplets.

Last modified Thu, 11 Jun, 2015 at 10:17

Stanford team makes biotechnology interactive with games and remote-control labs

Print view
Type: 
Research News

Through special environments called biotic processing units, bioengineers let people interact with cells like fish in an aquarium or even do simple experiments from afar.

Slug: 
Making Biotechnology Interactive
Short Dek: 
Through special environments called biotic processing units, Stanford bioengineers let people interact with cells.

In the 1950s, computers were giant machines that filled buildings and served a variety of arcane functions. Today they fit into our pockets or backpacks, and help us work, communicate and play.

"Biotechnology today is very similar to where computing technology used to be," said Ingmar Riedel-Kruse, an assistant professor of bioengineering at Stanford.

Last modified Tue, 21 Apr, 2015 at 9:25

Professor Karl Deisseroth wins prestigious Albany Prize

Print view
Type: 
Research News

The bioengineer and psychiatrist will be honored for his seminal role in the field of optogenetics, which allows scientists to precisely manipulate nerve-cell activity in freely moving animals to study their behavior.

Slug: 
Deisseroth wins Albany Prize
Short Dek: 
The bioengineer and psychiatrist will be honored for his seminal role in the field of optogenetics.

Stanford Professor Karl Deisseroth

Professor Karl Deisseroth will receive the Albany Medical Center Prize in Medicine and Biomedical Research for his pioneering work in optogenetics.

Last modified Mon, 20 Apr, 2015 at 11:40

NIST workshop at Stanford mulls ‘weights and measures’ for biotechnology

Print view
Type: 
Research News

Researchers from academia, industry and government launch effort to define standards for using bits and pieces of molecular biomachinery to create things such as vaccines, drugs and biosensors.

Slug: 
NIST standards for biotechnology
Short Dek: 
NIST researchers launch effort to define standards for using biotechnology to create things such as vaccines, drugs and biosensors

Just as defining the meter, kilogram and second helped lay the foundation for modern commerce, new measures and standards are needed to fuel the growth of the 21st Century bioeconomy.

The desire to create these new metrics brought more than 100 researchers from academia, industry and government to Stanford University on March 31st to launch a consortium convened by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, or NIST.

Last modified Thu, 16 Apr, 2015 at 9:49

Five faculty members receive NSF Early Career Development awards

Print view
Type: 
Research News

Assistant professors Amin Arbabian, Michael Lepech, Marco Pavone, Manu Prakash and Sindy Tang awarded grants to help promising junior faculty pursue outstanding research while also improving education.

Slug: 
Five Faculty Members Get NSF Grants
Short Dek: 
Arbabian, Lepech, Pavone, Prakash and Tang receive Early Career Development awards.

Five Stanford Engineering faculty members have received National Science Foundation Early Career Development (CAREER) awards for 2015. The CAREER program helps promising junior faculty pursue outstanding research while also improving education.

Last modified Thu, 2 Apr, 2015 at 16:16

Christina Smolke to receive mentor award from Northern California Chapter of Association of Women in Science

Print view
Type: 
Research News

Ellen Weaver Award surprises the associate professor of bioengineering, who was nominated by current and former students for helping them balance the demands of research and life.

Slug: 
Smolke to Get AWIS Mentor Award
Short Dek: 
Northern California Chapter of Association of Women in Science honors Stanford bioengineer.

Stanford bioengineer Christina Smolke was recently delighted and surprised to learn that she had been chosen to receive an award for student mentoring by the Northern California Chapter of the Association for Women in Science (NCC-AWIS).

“I was really touched by this,” Smolke said. “Several of my current and former students put the nomination package together, and I didn’t know about it until I got the email notifying me that I had received this award.”

Last modified Thu, 2 Apr, 2015 at 9:10