Tessa Alexanian and Janvi Ahuja on Synthethic Biology and GCBRs

September 21, 2022

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In this episode, Luca talks to Tessa Alexanian and Janvi Ahuja.

Tessa and Janvi

Tessa Alexanian is the Safety & Security Program Officer at the iGEM Foundation. Tessa is a fellow at the Emerging Leaders in Biosecurity Initiative, was previously a fellow at the Foresight Institute, and co-founded the East Bay Biosecurity Group. You can read more about what she's up to on her (excellent!) website.

Janvi Ahuja is a PhD student in computational biology at the University of Oxford, where she is affiliated with the Future of Humanity Institute and works with MIT's Nucleic Acid Observatory. Janvi is also a fellow at the Emerging Leaders in Biosecurity Initiative, and was previously an intern at the UN's Biological Weapons Convention ISU. Listeners may remember Janvi from co-hosting our episode with Ajay Karpur.

We discuss:

  • How synthetic biology began and why it is an exploding field
  • The iGEM competition and how to get involved in the community
  • Challenges and trade-offs in creating a culture of responsibility in synthetic biology
  • Emerging risks in synthetic biology and what this means for global catastrophic risks
  • Technical projects in biosecurity and career advice for how to get involved

Tessa and Janvi's Recommendations




Awesome things in Synthetic Biology

Safety and security in Synthetic Biology


Coming soon!

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