Michael J. Smanski

Biochemistry, Molecular Biology & Biophysics
College of Biological Sciences
Twin Cities

Award Year
2019
University Award
McKnight Land-Grant Professorship
Research Title
Re-programming living systems for applications in medicine, agriculture, and the environment
No Monument Location

The Smanski group works on diverse projects that share a common theme of leveraging technologies in DNA synthesis/assembly (i.e. writing and composing genetic information) to reprogram living systems. Recently, they have successfully engineered bacteria to produce a potent neuroprotective drug and engineered mammalian cells to produce therapeutic proteins. In parallel, they have invented and demonstrated a new approach for creating effective and safe bio-pesticides that will control populations of insect pests, disease vectors, and invasive species.