The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Joint Genome Institute (JGI) started this program in 2012, as set forth in its 10-year strategic vision to serve community science as a user facility pioneering functional genomics to solve the most relevant bioenergy and environmental problems.
Among major initiatives of the DNA Synthesis Science Program are:
- Genome to Enzymes and Pathways, which focuses on large-scale discovery, identification, and characterization of enzymes and pathways that are relevant to the DOE missions. In collaboration with other science programs, we actively develop bioinformatics tools to mine unique enzymes and pathways involved in lignocellulose decomposition, carbon-carbon bond formation (e.g., CO2 fixation) and breaking reactions, redox reactions, and biosynthesis of plant secondary metabolites through the DOE JGI’s proprietary genome portals. These enzymes and pathways are subsequently synthesized and biochemically characterized. If needed, combinatorial (mutant) libraries are generated for further characterization.
- Rapid Metabolic Engineering. Metabolic engineering traditionally utilizes a stepwise approach for strain development, requiring cycles of construct design, building, and characterization. In partnership with the Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI), we are developing tools including ICE and DIVA to rapidly design combinatorial construct variations. These constructs are subsequently synthesized and tested for their ability to produce desired chemicals.
We encourage proposals that have the potential to address some of the world’s most important scientific problems in energy and environment (research in DOE mission-relevant area). Both U.S. national and International applicants are eligible to apply for this program. The program has completed over 70 projects to date, including single gene synthesis (and characterization) and combinatorial pathway design and synthesis. We are also working on the synthesis of an entire refactored yeast chromosome.
Please see below links to learn how to submit a proposal to the DNA Synthesis Science Program.
- Computational Systems and Methods:
- The JGI has developed a suite of build-optimization software tools (BOOST) to streamline the design-build transition in synthetic biology engineering workflows. BOOST can automatically detect “difficult” sequences (of nucleotides) and redesign them for DNA synthesis, addressing DNA sequences with certain problematic characteristics (e.g., extreme %GC, sequence patterns, and repeats), which decrease the success rate of DNA synthesis.
- Integrated Microbial Genomes & Microbiomes IMG/M
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