The Joshi Lab

Biologically Fabricated Materials


Our lab works at the interface of Synthetic Biology, Synthetic Chemistry, and Materials Science. Many of our projects focus on modifying microbes through genetic engineering, synthetic chemistry, or other means in order to program them to make materials with specified functions. Some of our projects focus on the fundamental development of new molecules and organisms while others focus on using these platforms to solve specific problems that affect humanity. 

Congrats to two newly minted PhDs from our group!

Congratulations to Dan Birnbaum and Ilia Gelfat, who both defended their PhD theses in the last week. Both Zoom defenses went very smoothly and their respective committees had no trouble agreeing that they passed!

New paper on bacteria that autonomously produce cellulose capsules!

Congrats to Dan Birnbaum and Avinash Manjula-Basavanna on their new publication "Hybrid Living Capsules Autonomously Produced by Engineered Bacteria", out now in Advanced Science. You can find our author final draft before peer review can be read on bioRxiv. The paper...

New paper on curli-based plastic-like materials – AquaPlastics!

Congrats to Anna Duraj-Thatte and Avinash Manjula-Basavanna on their new publication, called "Water-processable, biodegradable and coat able aquaplastic from engineered biofilms", out now at Nature Chemical Biology. You can find our author final draft before peer...

New paper on Stiff Living Materials

Congrats to Avinash Manjula-Basavanna and Anna Duraj-Thatte on their new paper, now published at Advanced Functional Materials. The paper describes a new ways to fabricate rigid, transparent materials by drying whole microbial biomass. Avinash and Anna show that this...

Welcome incoming graduate class!

Welcome to the incoming graduate cohort at Northeastern Chemistry and Chemical Biology! With our normal Open House event for admitted students being virtual due to the  pandemic, we created a quick video to introduce you to our lab. [video width="1280" height="720"...

New publication on probiotic engineering

Congrats to Ilia Gelfat, Anton Kan, Siva Emani, and Pichet (Bom) Praveschotinunt on their new publication out in ACS Synthetic Biology! It describes the engineering of a plasmid system that is compatible with a probiotic E. coli strain (Nissle 1917) and is retained...

Preprint on Stiff Living Materials

Check out our recent preprint entitled "Robust, Self-Regeneratable Living Materials"! This work, by Avinash Manjula-Basavanna and Anna Duraj-Thatte, describes the fabrication of macroscopic, stiff, semi-transparent materials directly from drying microbial biomass. The...

Welcome to the lab, Ahmed!

We welcome Ahmed Sami Helal Ali Elwakeil to the lab! Ahmed is a postdoc who will be studying metal binding interactions with microbial biomass.

New NSF Grant

We got a new NSF grant from the Division of Materials Research to explore the feasibility of creating bioplastics from engineered microbes! Check out our positions page if you are interested in a position in the lab in this area. (Picture credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Back to the Lab

We are re-opening the lab after a pandemic-related closure. We are eager to resume research that has been stalled for many months and lucky to have a lab layout conducive to distancing protocols. Masks on, everyone! (Picture credit:
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