Webinars | Neil Swainston



Centre for Synthetic Biology of Fine and Speciaity Chemicals (SYNBIOCHEM),
Manchester Institute of Biotechnology,
University of Manchester,

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Neil Swainston is a Senior Experimental Officer at the Manchester Institute of Biotechnology, University of Manchester. Following several years of industrial experience in proteomics bioinformatics software development with the Waters Corporation, he began his research career 10 years ago in the Manchester Centre for Integrative Systems Biology. Now working with the Manchester Centre for Synthetic Biology of Fine and Specialty Chemicals (SYNBIOCHEM), his research interests span ’omics data analysis and management, genome-scale metabolic modelling, DNA design and optimisation, and directed evolution of enzyme optimisations, and he has published over 35 papers covering these subjects. Driving all of these interests is a continued commitment to software development, data standardisation and reusability, and the development of novel informatics approaches.

Webinar Presentations

27th June 2016 (14:00 – 14:45 GMT) : “Design Tools and Data in Synthetic Biology”

The Manchester Centre for Synthetic Biology of Fine and Specialty Chemicals (SYNBIOCHEM) applies a Design-Build-Test cycle to the metabolic engineering of high value target compounds. Fundamental to this endeavour is the application and development of an integrated informatics infrastructure to support this work. The Centre is committed to the development of software to support the metabolic engineering lifecycle, support appropriate standardisation efforts, and release code as open source.

From a Design perspective, existing tools such as RetroPath are being further developed in order to select candidate pathways and heterologous enzymes through application of cheminformatics and machine learning approaches. Novel graph databases are being developed to aid this work, warehousing chemical, enzyme and pathway data from a number of resources including ChEBI, Uniprot and MNXref allowing for multiple resources to be queries quickly and intuitively.

In supporting the Build aspect, novel DNA design algorithms are being developed to optimise reuable synthetic DNA parts and their assembly methods. The use of community-developed data standards and management systems such as SBOL, SBOL Visual and JBEI ICE will be considered.

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