To date, 22 Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E) projects have attracted more than $625 million in private-sector follow-on funding after ARPA-E’s investment of approximately $95 million. ARPA-E earlier this week hosted a summit and technology showcase. As part of that event, four project videos were debuted, one of which, on biofuels, mentions the Joint BioEnergy Institute, Jim Kirby (Physical Biosciences), and Christer Janssen (Earth Sciences). More>
Posts Tagged ‘Joint BioEnergy Institute’
During a recent trip to the Bay Area and Silicon Valley, Danish Minister for Science and Higher Education Sofie Carsten Nielsen visited the Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI). Nielsen met with JBEI’s Vice President of Feedstocks Henrik Scheller (left) and Director of Commercialization, Robin Johnston (right). The visit was part of an effort by Denmark to strengthen collaborations between knowledge institutions and businesses. JBEI shared its experience as an organization that represents a departure from traditional research institutions. JBEI’s streamlined approach, coupled with a culture of innovation, has resulted in a rate of invention disclosure and licensing that is more than double that of the top five U.S. universities, per funding dollar.
Researchers from the Joint BioEnergy Institute, Joint Genome Institute, and collaborators have developed a portable, network-enabled system for testing drinking water contamination. The system, called ScanDrop, uses microfluidics technology and cloud-based networking to scan water samples for pathogens and transmit the data remotely. More>
Joint BioEnergy Institute CEO Jay Keasling, Sarah Richardson and Sam Deutsch of the Joint Genome Institute, and Nathan Hillson of JBEI last month gave a presentation on synthetic biology to the Lab’s Community Advisory Group (CAG). CAG was formed in 2010 to provide input into the Lab’s physical plans and development projects.
A Berkeley Lab-led team hopes to engineer a new enzyme that efficiently converts methane to liquid transportation fuel. “There’s a lot of methane available, and we want to develop a new way to harness it as an energy source for vehicles,” says Christer Jansson, a biochemist in the Earth Sciences Division who heads the effort. The ARPA-E project also involves researchers from the Life Sciences Division, the Advanced Light Source, the Joint BioEnergy Institute, and several industrial partners. More>
Jay Keasling, associate Lab director for biosciences and the chief executive officer of the Joint BioEnergy Institute, was in Israel earlier this month to deliver a keynote address at an international conference on biofuels. The Agro-Energy Nexus Summit, in the city of Herzilya, was convened by the Fuel Choices Initiative in the Israeli prime minister’s office and the Israel Export and International Cooperation Institute, in cooperation with the Ministry of Economy. More>
Blake Simmons and Kristen DeAngelis of the Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI) led a study in which the enzymatic activity of a rain forest microbe that breaks down lignin essentially by breathing it was characterized. Lignin is a tough woody polymer in the walls of plant cells that binds and protects the cellulose sugars plants use for energy. This makes it a major challenge for those who would extract those same plant sugars and use them to make advanced biofuels. Also working on this study were Deepak Sharma, Rebecca Varney, Nancy Isern, Lye Markillie, Carrie Nicora, Angela Norbeck, Ronald Taylor, Joshua Aldrich and Errol Robinson. More>
Jay Keasling, Berkeley Lab’s ALD for Biosciences, led a team of researchers at the Joint BioEnergy Institute that developed the first dynamic regulatory system that prevents the build-up of toxic metabolites in engineered microbes during the fermentation process. This groundbreaking technique can boost production of an advanced biofuel, a therapeutic drug, or other valuable chemical products. It has already been used to double the production in E. coli of amorphadiene, a precursor to the premier antimalarial drug artemisinin. Other members of the JBEI team were Robert Dahl, Fuzhong Zhang, Jorge Alonso-Gutierrez, Edward Baidoo, Tanveer Batth, Alyssa Redding-Johanson, Christopher Petzold, Aindrila Mukhopadhyay, Taek Soon Lee and Paul Adams. More>
Jay Keasling, ALD for Biosciences at Berkeley Lab and CEO of the Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI), was featured in a recent New York Times article by Andrew Pollack about the use of synthetic biology to produce some of the world’s most sought-after flavors and fragrances, such as vanilla, saffron and patchouli. Keasling compared the process to the brewing of beer and said that synthetic biology not only can benefit the food and cosmetic industries and their consumers, but also relieve pressure on some over-harvested wild plants like sandalwood, a tree that provides a fragrance. More>