Bogumil Karas, PhD
President and CSO of Designer Microbes, Inc.
Dr. Bogumil Karas received his Bachelors degree in Plant Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (2004) and his Ph.D. in Biology (2010) from Western University, London, ON, Canada. At Western University his research focused on deciphering genetics of nitrogen-fixing root-nodule symbiosis where he discovered alternative mechanisms for mechanism for successful rhizobial colonization of legume roots and significantly contributed to demonstration that cytokinin perception was crucial for the development of the symbiotic root nodule. Next he worked for five years at the Synthetic Biology and Bioenergy group at J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI) in La Jolla, CA, USA. At JCVI his work focused on developing technologies for cloning of whole natural or synthetic chromosomes as centromeric plasmids in yeast, where they can be manipulated using powerful yeast genetic tools and then transplanted (“booted-up”) inside microbial cells of the same or different species. During his time at JCVI he demonstrated that whole bacterial chromosome can be transfer into yeast cells by cell fusion and demonstrated that direct transfer of genomic DNA between a prokaryotes and a eukaryotic algae via conjugation is possible. In 2015 he founded synthetic biology company called Designer Microbes Inc., in London, ON, Canada, where serves as President and CSO.