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Imagine a future designed with biology.

What if you could grow anything?

Biology has been innovating since life on Earth began. Synthetic biology is a revolution 3.5 billion years in the making.

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Resurrecting the Sublime

Could we ever again smell flowers driven to extinction by humans?

A new cutting-edge scientific and creative work allows us to once again experience the scent of an extinct flower blooming on a forested volcanic slope.

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What if you could smell an extinct flower?

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Last Resort

Can biotech interventions prevent the mass extinction of coral reefs?

“Having engineered ourselves and our ecosystems into a dire situation, can we engineer our way out of it again?” Britt Wray analyzes the potential of a partnership between synthetic and conservation biologists to save the world’s corals.

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What if coral reefs could be revived?

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Unleashing the promise of plant based foods

Motif is reinventing the way science is applied to make plant-based foods better tasting, more nutritious, and more sustainable.

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What if more of our food was harm-free?

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The era of living medicines

Together with Synlogic, Ginkgo Bioworks is ushering in a new paradigm for therapeutics, where bacteria aren’t just making the medicine, they are the medicine.

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What if bacteria could treat diseases in your gut?

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The Ugly Truth

What happens when the government enforces beauty standards?

“Beauty is dangerous because it trades in power, and power yields nothing without demand.” Arabelle Sicardi breaks down the troubling legacy of "ugly laws" in the United States.

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What if the world was accessible to everyone?

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Waste is a failure of imagination

By bringing a new level of focus to nature’s potential, Allonnia plans to optimize, eradicate, and repurpose waste for a waste free, pollution free world.

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What if all of our waste was reusable?

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Intelligent Designs

The work of art in the age of synthetic reproduction

"If the life sciences can be art, and every human being is an artist, then shouldn’t everyone have the right to practice life?" Victoria Campbell examines the intersection of art, biology, and society, and implores bioartists to engage the relationship between political aesthetics and the development of culture.

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What if living art could shape the future?

What if this is just the beginning?

Biology runs on code in the form of DNA. It’s A, T, G, and C rather than 0 and 1. We can read and write with DNA to program cells. This allows synthetic biologists to reimagine the possibilities of living things, from bacteria that fight cancer to rewilding whole ecosystems. We’ve created this site to highlight stories about cutting-edge synthetic biology that’s making the world more open, equitable, and sustainable.

At Ginkgo Bioworks, we program cells to make everything from food to materials to therapeutics. You can read more of what we’re thinking about at Grow, our magazine about synthetic biology. And if you’re passionate about engineering biology, we hope you’ll join us! What would you grow if you really could grow anything?

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