Plant Biosystems Design

view profile for Patrick Shih

Patrick Shih

Director of Plant Biosystems Design

view profile for Mitchell Thompson

Mitchell Thompson

Deputy Director of Plant Biosystems Design

view profile for Simon Alamos

Simon Alamos

Guest Postdoctoral Fellow

view profile for Niklas Hummel

Niklas Hummel

Assistant Specialist

view profile for Kasey Markel

Kasey Markel

Guest Affiliate Student

view profile for Sasilada Sirirungruang

Sasilada Sirirungruang

Guest Postdoctoral Fellow

view profile for Matthew Szarzanowicz

Matthew Szarzanowicz

Guest Graduate Student

view profile for Andy Zhou

Andy Zhou

Post Doctoral Researcher

Given the scale and utility of agriculture, plants offer a unique platform to address many imminent challenges facing society. The Plant Biosystems Design group focuses on developing the foundational knowledge and technologies needed to innovate, deploy, and engineer new traits into plants using synthetic biology approaches. Specifically, the team is interested in manipulating plant metabolism in order to optimize plant development and biomass characteristics for sustainable energy-crop and bioenergy production. In order to efficiently engineer plants, tools and techniques will be developed to expedite and implement biotechnological applications in agriculturally relevant crops.


  • Developing synthetic biology tools to enable more complex, targeted, and sophisticated engineering efforts in plants
  • Stacking traits into bioenergy feedstocks for improved yield, biomass, and sustainability
  • Designing and engineering plants for the production of target compounds directly from photosynthesis

Featured Publications