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Kristala L.J. Prather, Ph.D.

AIMBE College of Fellows Class of 2020
For pioneering research in metabolic engineering and synthetic biology towards the design, assembly and regulation of biosynthetic pathways.

Building a better chemical factory – out of microbes

Via MIT Technology Review | August 24, 2021

Metabolic engineers have a problem: cells are selfish. The scientists want to use microbes to produce chemical compounds for industrial applications. The microbes prefer to concentrate on their own growth.

Kristala L. Jones Prather ’94 has devised a tool that satisfies both conflicting objectives. Her metabolite valve acts like a train switch: it senses when a cell culture has reproduced enough to sustain itself and then redirects metabolic flux—the movement of molecules in a pathway—down the track that synthesizes the desired compound. The results: greater yield of the product and sufficient cell growth to keep the culture healthy and productive… Continue reading.

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Dr. Kristala Prather Inducted into AIMBE College of Fellows

Via AIMBE | March 30, 2020

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE) has announced the induction of Kristala L.J. Prather, Ph.D., Arthur D. Little Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, to its College of Fellows.

Election to the AIMBE College of Fellows is among the highest professional distinctions accorded to a medical and biological engineer. The College of Fellows is comprised of the top two percent of medical and biological engineers. College membership honors those who have made outstanding contributions to “engineering and medicine research, practice, or education” and to “the pioneering of new and developing fields of technology, making major advancements in traditional fields of medical and biological engineering, or developing/implementing innovative approaches to bioengineering education.”

Dr. Prather was nominated, reviewed, and elected by peers and members of the College of Fellows for “pioneering research in metabolic engineering and synthetic biology towards the design, assembly and regulation of biosynthetic pathways.

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