Sophia Xu talks about “converging paths”.

The second season of BioGenesis centers on the theme of “converging paths.” This episode features graduate student Sophia Xu, who’s bringing together modern scientific methods and ancient Eastern herbal remedies. She studies molecules in plants to investigate how molecules in natural products interact with proteins in the human body — and she may even find a cure for hangovers along the way.

Mentorship goes a long way.

A big shout-out for the MIT Summer Research Program (MSRP), which has had a longstanding impact on many students who came through the program over the years (see MIT News). We are honored to have participated in the program as a host lab in the past years. Great to have hosted Jeandele Elliot this summer, who is a chemical engineering student from Howard University. We look forward to seeing her doing fantastic things in the years to come!

Weng Lab receives a grant from the Keck Foundation for enzyme evolution research.

Associate Professor Jing-Ke Weng of the Whitehead Institute and MIT is the recipient of a $1 million grant from the W. M. Keck Foundation to develop new biotechnologies that enable directed evolution of metabolic enzymes at will. If successful, this project will have a transformative impact upon multiple fields by enabling the unprecedented capability to create new designer medicines and commodity chemicals.