The Metabolic Engineering Laboratory (MEL) completed 30 years of operation in May 2022. It was founded in 1992 on the vision of engineering microbes to allow them to carry out new chemistry leading to the conversion of renewable substrates, like plant matter (sugars) and other organic compounds, to valuable chemical products and fuels. Genetic engineering, applied molecular biology, bioreaction engineering and biochemical engineering are enabling sciences of this field of Metabolic Engineering. The field has grown enormously during this period as demonstrated by the conferences, publications, new societies and robust impactful research around the world. The MIT MEL continues its tradition of pioneering new concepts and applications fueled by the emergence of sustainability as potent driving force in advancing metabolic engineering as cornerstone of industrial biotechnology. We continue to be at the forefront of research in natural product synthesis and conversion of gases and renewable feedstocks to chemicals and fuels.
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