meet the team

AJ walters

Undergraduate, Biological Engineering, USU

Research Interests: Synthetic biology, Artificial Intelligence, Automation, Medicine

Inspiration: I grew up wanting to be a paleontologist until reading Jurassic Park. I tried to genetically engineer glowing fish in high school, but only managed to breed them. Learning about biotechnology then inspired me to study synthetic biology.

Drew porter

Undergraduate, Biological Engineering, USU

Research Interests: DIY enthusiast, Automation, Marine Biology

Inspiration: I have always been fascinated by the world around me, and as a kid I constantly collected, grew, bred, and manipulated the things I collected, like toilet paper tubes, fruit flies, sour cream containers, yeast, etc. It drove my mom crazy with all the "experiments" I had laying around the house. DIY Biology to me is a perfect mesh of all the experiments I did as a kid, and allows me to satisfy my curiosity.

Clark Riddle

Undergraduate, Biological Engineering, USU

Research Interests: Synthetic Biology, Conservation Ecology

Inspiration: I grew up with aspirations of getting an HMS Beagle of my own to go to far off countries and study the animals there. In high school I learned more about genetics and upon attending a conference about synthetic biology, I realized how much the natural world has to offer.

Amanda Moravek

Undergraduate, Biological Engineering, USU

Research Interests: Synthetic Biology, Evolutionary Biology, Computational Genomics, Paleogenetics, Plant Biotechnology

Inspiration: I have always been fascinated by the natural world around me and how it works. I decided to pursue Biological Engineering so I could learn more about nature and apply that knowledge to solve real world problems.

Makail Lunt

Research Associate, Recursion Pharmaceuticals | B.S. Biological Engineering, USU

Research Interests: Synthetic Biology, Entomology, Forensics, Outreach, Education, Automation

Inspiration: Growing up I loved catching insects and animals and I have always wanted to create a winged dragon with different animal parts. Little did I know how difficult that would actually be (not only the science, but also the ethics; what if I created a monster?), but it got me interested in Synthetic Biology.

Advisory Board:

Dr. Charles Miller

Associate Professor, USU

Biological Engineering

Synthetic Biology Expert

Dr. Ryan Jackson

Assistant Professor, USU

Biochemistry

CRISPR Expert

Dr. Ronald Sims

Professor, USU

Biological Engineering

Industry Relations Expert