By understanding the complicated systems that make up biology, we will understand more about the individual parts, how they work together, communicate, and mobilize into action, according to Chao Tang, PhD, UCSF School of Pharmacy faculty member.
Thinking like engineers has transformed a new wave of UCSF scientists into systems experts who use big computers and big technology to ask the biggest question of all: How does life work? A new field called systems biology looks at how all components of biological systems work together.
Left to right: Andrej Sali, PhD; Christopher Voigt, PhD; Ken Dill, PhD; and Anthony Hunt PhD
Some people see a future populated by billions of mechanical micromachines, robots no bigger than a speck of dust that are programmed to do our bidding. UCSF School of Pharmacy researcher Christopher Voigt, PhD sees a different future. He sees living micromachines that can be engineered into a new kind of pharmaceutical. His micromachines are bacteria.