ep11 - Mustafa Khammash: Cybergenetics

April 14, 2023 Alberto Padoan Season 1 Episode 11
ep11 - Mustafa Khammash: Cybergenetics
Show Notes

In this episode, our guest is Mustafa Khammash. Mustafa is the director of the Control Theory and Systems Biology Lab at ETH Zürich and guides us in this episode as we explore Cybergenetics - the cutting-edge intersection of control theory and synthetic biology. From biomolecular control to antithetic motifs, we discuss real-world applications and ethical dilemmas. Don't miss it!

00:00 - Intro
00:50 - Cybergenetics
02:22 - Genetics 101
05:07- Where control meets biology
06:49 - Mustafa's early steps in biology: why do dairy cows get milk fever?
12:05 - Systems and synthetic biology
14:34 - History of synthetic biology
17:16 - On biological computing
23:23 - On biomolecular control
29:27 - The birth of the Antithetic motif for molecular feedback control
39:25 - Enabling technologies
48:28 - How the antithetic motif works
57:20 - Model organisms
01:00:45 - Applications of Cybergenetics
01:06:45 - Ethical dilemmas in Cybergenetics
01:10:57 - On the internal model principle
01:16:01 - Advice to future students
01:19:51 - Outro

Mustafa’s website:
- Paper on calcium regulation:
- History of synthetic biology:
- Motifs:
- Paper - In silico feedback for in vivo regulation of a gene expression circuit:
- Paper - A universal biomolecular integral feedback controller for robust perfect adaptation:
- Optogenetics:
- About the fluorescent protein:
- Electroporation:
- Paper - Cybergenetics: Theory and Applications of Genetic Control Systems:
- Paper - Universal structural requirements for maximal robust perfect adaptation in biomolecular networks:

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Acknowledgments and sponsors
This episode was supported by the National Centre of Competence in Research on «Dependable, ubiquitous automation» and the IFAC Activity fund. The podcast benefits from the help of an incredibly talented and passionate team. Special thanks to L. Seward, E. Cahard, F. Banis, F. Dörfler, J. Lygeros, ETH studio and mirrorlake . Music was composed by A New Element.