The Future of Bioengineering: An Interview with Professor Drew Endy

  • Cindy Zang Liu Stanford University


Drew Endy is a member of the bioengineering faculty at Stanford and BioBricks Foundation president. His teams pioneered amplifying genetic logic, rewritable DNA data storage, reliably-reuseable standard biological parts, and genome refactoring. Drew helped launch the new undergraduate majors in bioengineering at both MIT and Stanford; he also co-founded the iGEM competition, a global genetic engineering “olympics” now engaging over 6,000 students annually. The White House recognized Drew for his work on open-source biotechnology and, most recently, he received an honorary doctorate from the Technische Universiteit Delft. Drew served on the US National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity and now serves on the World Health Organization’s Smallpox Advisory Committee. He lives in Menlo Park, California with Christina Smolke (Stanford bioengineering professor & Antheia, Inc., CEO), their two boys, and three cats. Drew was a co-founder of Gen9, Inc.; he recently returned to serve as a director while Gen9 was successfully acquired. He worked briefly with the Rapid Evaluation team at Google [X] and also served on the core project team for the new Shriram Center at Stanford. He is a founding co-director of the Joint Initiative for Metrology in Biology (JIMB). Drew was recognized by Esquire magazine as one of the 75 most influential people of the 21st century. Biography adapted from and photo from Drew Endy’s profile at