Our group is engaged in the long-term effort to construct a minimal cell using a bottom-up approach. The core architecture of our minimal cell model consists of a cell-free gene expression system encapsulated inside a semi-permeable lipid vesicle (liposome) compartment. Using in vesiculo synthesis of proteins from DNA templates, we aim to reconstitute four essential cellular modules:
- DNA replication,
- vesicle growth through lipid biosynthesis,
- compartment division,
- regulatory genetic circuits.
Besides, we are trying to exploit the potential of genetically controlled liposome bioreactors as therapeutic nanofactories for targeted drug delivery purposes. Our lab is also interested in developing RNA protocell models based on fatty acid vesicles and catalytic RNAs called ribozymes. We are using multidisciplinary approaches including synthetic and molecular biology, computational modelling and advanced fluorescence microscopy.
- Christophe on TEDx, Dec. 2015 (video)
- Lab featured in de Volkskrant, 12 Sep. 2015 (article in Dutch)
- Lab featured in the Dutch newspaper DE TELEGRAAF (zaterdag 20 september 2014).
- Lab featured in the TU Delft DELTA, 30 September 2013 (link to article here):
Alicia and Pauline in action…