ELLINGTON, ANDREW

Andrew Ellington

Professor
Molecular Biosciences, Applied Research Laboratories

Wilson M. and Kathryn Fraser Research Professor in Biochemistry | Fellow of Mr. and Mrs. Corbin J. Robertson, Sr. Regents Chair in Molecular Biology | Fellow of Mr. and Mrs. Isaac Arnold, Sr. Regents Chair in Molecular Biology


ellingtonlab@gmail.com

Phone: 512-232-3424

Office Location
MBB 3.424

Postal Address
The University of Texas at Austin
Molecular Biosciences, College of Natural Sciences
100 West 24th Street
Austin, TX 78712

B.S., Michigan State University (1981)
Ph.D., Harvard University (1988)

Research Interests

Lab Goals:
The Ellington lab is attempting to develop novel synthetic organisms based on altering the translation apparatus and developing modular nucleic acid software. Translation engineering centers on the introduction of novel amino acids into proteins that have the capability to base-pair, and is being pursued using a variety of techniques, including directed evolution, computational design, and high-throughput synthesis. This latter capacity is abetted by a Gene Synthesis Facility capable of producing multiple kilobases of DNA per week. In parallel, DNA circuits based on strand exchange reactions and capable of executing embedded algorithms are being developed, using tools such as aptamers and DNA nanotechnology. The first application of these circuits will be in point-of-care diagnostics, but eventually these circuits should form the basis of a new, modular cellular operating system. We anticipate this operating system should also prove useful in cell-to-cell communication and drug delivery in organisms, and are actively pursuing in vivo studies. In order to enhance both engineering translation and installing DNA circuitry into cells, we have developed tools to directly synthesize operons, enable facile horizontal transfer, and edit genomes, and are interested in how such tools can be used to engineer cellular consortiums, including biofilms.

  1. DeKosky BJ, Ippolito GC, Deschner RP, Lavinder JJ, Wine Y, Rawlings BM, Varadarajan N, Giesecke C, Dörner T, Andrews SF, Wilson PC, Hunicke-Smith SP, Willson CG, Ellington AD, Georgiou G. (2013 Jan 20). High-throughput sequencing of the paired human immunoglobulin heavy and light chain repertoire. Nat Biotechnol. 31(2):166-9. PMID: 23334449. DOI: doi:10.1038/nbt.2492

  2. Lu WC, Ellington AD. (2013 Mar 15). In vitro selection of proteins via emulsion compartments. Methods. 60(1):75-80. PMID: 22491026. DOI: 10.1016/j.ymeth.2012.03.008

  3. Maranhao AC, Ellington AD. (2013 May 08). Endowing cells with logic and memory. Nat Biotechnol. 31(5):413-5. PMID: 23657394. DOI: 10.1038/nbt.2573

  4. Jiang YS, Li B, Milligan JN, Bhadra S, Ellington AD. (2013 May 22). Real-time detection of isothermal amplification reactions with thermostable catalytic hairpin assembly. J Am Chem So. 135(20):7430–7433. PMID: 23647466. DOI: 10.1021/ja4023978

  5. Enyeart PJ, Chirieleison SM, Dao MN, Perutka J, Quandt EM, Yao J, Whitt JT, Keatinge-Clay AT, Lambowitz AM, Ellington AD. (2013 Sep 03). Generalized bacterial genome editing using mobile group II introns and Cre-lox. Mol Syst Biol. 9:685. DOI: 10.1038/msb.2013.41