Rapid, Reliable and Repeatable Platforms for Cell-Free Prototyping

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We are working with Synvitrobio, Inc. to develop and commercialize a cell-free platform that that emulates the in vivo environment and allows for rapid, low-cost, high-throughput, and reproducible prototyping of complex biomolecular networks. Achieving this goal will accelerate predictive and rational engineering of biology by providing an intermediary environment between design and execution.

Current participants:

Additional participants:


  • Zachary Sun, Abel Chiao (Synvitrobio, Inc.)

Past participants:

  • Clare Hayes (research tech)
  • Mark Prator (Technician, EAS)
  • Vipul Singhal (PhD student, CNS)


Work at Caltech is focused on the following areas:

  • Reduce variability of output data from the cell-free experts by analyzing sources of variability and developing methods of calibrating cell-free data sets
  • Explore the use of lyophilized extracts and buffers for long-term storage.


  • Agency: Synvitrobio
  • Grant number:
  • Start date: 1 Oct 2016
  • End date: 31 Jul 2018
  • Support: 0.5 students + technician support, materials
  • Reporting: Monthly updates; quarterly reports