TerAvest’s Research Focused on Building Better Bacteria
Michaela TerAvest recently joined Michigan State University as assistant professor, in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, in the College of Natural Science. TerVest, who was recruited as part of the university’s Global Impact Initiative, studies how bacteria harvest energy from electrons in an effort to create better bacterial strains for fuel and chemical production.
PhD: Cornell University, Biological and Environmental Engineering (2014)
Recent Honors: 2nd place podium presentation, North American Meeting of the International Society for Microbial Electrochemistry and Technology, 2014
Most Recent Publication: TerAvest M. A. and Ajo-Franklin C. M. (2015). Transforming exoelectrogens for biotechnology using synthetic biology. Accepted for Biotechnology and Bioengineering
About My Research: “Bacteria have been used to produce valuable chemicals for centuries, and today synthetic biology is rapidly broadening the scope of products that are accessible for manufacture by model organisms, such as E. coli. However, the natural metabolic and homeostatic processes of the host organism can hinder speed and efficiency of chemical production. Therefore, better understanding and control of respiratory processes in bacteria and their impact on engineered metabolic pathways is crucial for progress toward sustainable fuel and chemical production.”