B.S., Chemical Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China, 2011.Ph.D., Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Rice University, 2016 (expected).
Due to high oil price, sustained availability and environmental concerns, the demand of fuels and chemicals derived from renewable biomass is booming. Under that context, our lab has successfully engineered the functional reversal of β-oxidation pathway through metabolic engineering and synthetic biology. This engineered pathway can synthesize biofuel and chemicals such as n-butanol, higher alcohols and fatty acid more efficiently than traditional fatty acid synthesis pathway, owing to lower energy cost, and has the great potential to meet the industrial and market demand.However, the product range of the engineered reverse β-oxidation pathway is still limited. Thus, my project deals with constructing a modified reverse β-oxidation pathway to produce n-alcohols or carboxylic acids with functionalized or substituted group. This can be achieved through using the desired functionalized or substituted primers, or post-synthesis functionalization and substitution with metabolic engineering and synthetic biology technology. My main product would be α,ω-dicarboxylic acids and α,ω-diols.