Elaine Shapland, PhD

Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Elaine Shapland is the head of the Build team at Ginkgo Bioworks, a Boston-based synthetic biology company that makes and sells engineered organisms. The Build team are biological engineers and software engineers who create high throughput molecular biology services to support strain engineering. This Build team is part of the Ginkgo Foundry, where teams utilize custom software tooling to automate the repeatable steps in engineering new microbial strains to reduce the time and effort to generate and test those strains. Ginkgo engineers multiple microbial host strains as well as mammalian strains, and so these molecular biology services must be generic enough to serve the needs of these diverse programs but also specific enough to be superior to traditional bench strain engineering methods. Outsourced materials must arrive as fast as possible, including synthetic DNA fragments or next generation sequencing data, in order to meet the demands of Ginkgo's customers. Elaine enjoys the challenge of finding the right amount of automation and the correct balance of outsourcing to apply to these molecular biology workflows to ensure they meet the ever expanding needs of the Build team's customers.

Prior to joining Ginkgo, Elaine was the head of the Automated Strain Engineering group at Amyris, Inc. where her team developed high throughput plasmid assembly and yeast strain construction workflows. She received her PhD from the University of California, Berkeley in Microbiology and characterized the microbial tyrosine phosphatase CtpA in Caulobacter crescentus.
Speaking In
3:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Monday, June 5
Humanity will reach a critical milestone when we can rapidly reprogram and re-engineer biological…