Amyris Biotechnologies, Inc.

Amyris Biotechnologies, Inc.

5980 Horton Street, Ste. 350
Emeryville, CA 94608
(510) 450-0761


Amyris Biotechnologies is translating the promise of synthetic biology into solutions for real-world problems. Building on advances in molecular, cell and systems biology, they are engineering microbes capable of producing high-value compounds to address major global health and energy challenges. They are employing these living chemical factories to produce novel pharmaceuticals, renewable fuels, and specialty chemicals.

Amyris Biotechnologies is dedicated to improving the world by leveraging breakthroughs in synthetic biology. Amyris’ technology is able to provide a consistent, cost-effective supply of biofuels and other high-value natural compounds, including pharmaceuticals, fine chemicals, and nutraceuticals.

Amyris is currently focused on two major projects:

* The production of the drug artemisinin to fight malaria in developing countries

* The production of renewable biofuels to help reduce global warming


Amyris uses engineered microbes and rapid enzymatic pathway construction techniques to build microorganisms capable of producing high-value compounds, from renewable biofuels to pharmaceuticals.

Amyris’ platform technology is based on a modular design of metabolic pathways. One example of this approach was developed at the University of California, Berkeley, in the laboratory of Professor Jay Keasling and published in July 2003 in Nature Biotechnology.

Synthetic biology is a new scientific discipline that involves the design and construction of new biological parts or systems, as well as the re-design of existing biological systems, for specific applications. This new discipline takes the knowledge gained from the analysis of existing biological systems and applies it to the construction of new ones.

Amyris is using synthetic biology techniques to build biological solutions to important global problems.  They focus on creating new metabolic pathways in microbes, essentially re-programming them to function as living factories for the environmentally-friendly production of high-value chemicals. Their first project converts a microbe known for its ability to make copious amounts of alcohol, such as yeast, into a chemical factory for a proven anti-malarial drug. Their second project is the development of a fermentation process that uses custom-designed microbes to renewably produce second-generation, high-performance biofuels that are cost-effective and compatible with current automotive and distribution technologies.

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