Marc Güell Cargol

Marc Güell Cargol

Universitat Pompeu Fabra

Engineering Sciences

Marc Güell is an ICREA Research Professor, working at Pompeu Fabra University. His work includes several synthetic biology breakthroughs (radically recoded genome, PERVs-free pigs, gene writing, skin microbiome engineering) that have produced important impact (>18,000 citations, 3 companies developing therapies, patents licensed to leading companies) and he is currently developing new principles for biological engineering and synthetic evolution. He is an EMBO YI and member of Academia Joven de España. He has been recognized as 'Highly Cited Researcher' (2019); and with the National Research Award to the young talent (2018), the August Pi i Sunyer Award (2021) and the National Research Award Ángela Ruiz Robles (2022).

Research interests

My goal is to leverage biology to create new scientific principles and technologies to engineer genomes and metagenomes, and push biological engineering to the next level. Read and write technologies have been advancing at breathtaking pace. This has enabled us to understand and engineer life using its genuine language: DNA.
Very recently, a great ally came to provide intelligence to this unique molecular hardware. AI is approaching a very remarkable understanding of life language and can produce new synthetic proteins. Directed evolution is capable of fast generation of genotypes and fast selection of phenotypes. However, current methods have no software to orient evolutionary trajectories. Coupling this biological hardware with AI massively accelerates the evolution rate of protein function. Not only we can read and write DNA, but we are starting to design synthetic parts de novo. This has been a transformative development for my research goals.