Conference Programme

Harnessing synthetic biology for the future; keeping us healthy, feeding & fuelling our growing population, & helping us lead more sustainable lives

SynbiTECH 2019, 24-25th June, QEII Centre, London

Science, engineering and technology continue to impact and guide our futures through the rapidly expanding bioeconomy – helping us to stay healthy, feed our growing population, produce enough energy and live sustainably on our fragile planet.

Day One
Networking/Refreshments 08:15 – 09:00

Registration and Coffee

Networking/Refreshments 09:00 – 09:15


Professors Richard Kitney and Paul Freemont, Co-Directors, SynbiCITE

Keynote 09:15 – 10:00

Keynote: Designing biology at scale

Jason Kelly, CEO, Ginkgo Bioworks

Panel discussions 10:00 – 10:45

Panel Discussion: Growing the Bioeconomy
Multibillion-dollar biology: The explosive expansion of synthetic biology propelling the bioeconomy to multibillion-dollar status. 

Introduced and chaired by Lionel Clarke, Co-chair, Synthetic Biology Leadership Council

  • Lord Henley, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (subject to any urgent Parliamentary business)
  • Steve Bagshaw, CEO, FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies
  • Joyce Tait, Co-Director, Innogen Institute
  • Sarah Main, Executive Director, Campaign for Science and Engineering
Networking/Refreshments 10:45 – 11:15

Coffee Break 

Presentations 11:15 – 12:30

Company Presentations: Accelerating bioscience
Tools and applications that are shaping our future now

Multinational speaker: 
Andrew Phillips, Head of Biological Computation Group, Microsoft

SME / Start-up speakers:

  • Markus Gershater, Chief Scientific Officer and Co-founder, Synthace Ltd
  • Ryan Cawood, CEO and Founder, Oxford Genetics Ltd
  • Tim Brears, CEO, Evonetix
  • Jiahao Huang, Founder and CCO, Nuclera Nucleics
  • Davide De Lucrezia, Managing Director, Doulix
  • Kristin Ellis, Director of Strategic Initiatives, Opentrons Labworks 
Networking/Refreshments 12:30 – 13:30


Panel discussions 13:30 – 14:15

Panel Discussion: Technology & Innovation 

Introduced and Chaired by Rick JohnsonCEO, Global Helix LLC

Chi Onwurah, Labour MP, Newcastle upon Tyne Central; Shadow Minister for Industrial Strategy, Science and Innovation (subject to any urgent Parliamentary business)
Tim Fell, CEO, Synthace Ltd

Further panel members TBC

Keynote 14:15 – 14:45

Keynote: Global synthetic biology in industry

John Cumbers, Founder, SynBioBeta

Panel discussions 14:45 – 15:30

Panel Discussion: The emerging synthetic biology industry and society

Chaired by Sir Roland Jackson, Research Associate, UCL

  • Hilary Sutcliffe, Director, SocietyInside
  • Philip Shapira, Professor of Innovation Management, University of Manchester
  • Nicolas Kral, Co-founder and CTO, Phytoform Labs

Further companies TBC

Networking/Refreshments 15:30 – 16:00

Tea Break

Presentations 16:00 – 17:00

Company Presentations: Making a material difference to the planet
Sustainable biomanufacturing and the environment 

Multinational speaker: 
Roel Bovenberg, Corporate Science Fellow, Biotechnology, DSM

SME / Start-up speakers:

  • Sean Sutcliffe, Chief Executive Officer, Green Biologics Ltd

Plus 5 SME company presentations TBC

Keynote 17:00 – 17:30

Synbio Unplugged: In conversation with Hagan Bayley

Hagan Bayley, Co-Founder, Oxford Nanopore Technologies

Keynote 17:30 – 18:00

Synbio Unplugged: In conversation with... TBC

Networking/Refreshments 18:00 – 20:00

Sponsored Champagne and Networking 

Day Two
Networking/Refreshments 08:30 – 09:15

Arrival and Coffee

Keynote 09:00 – 09:30

Plenaries: TBC

Keynote 09:30 – 10:00

Keynote: Bio-design for the Bioeconomy 

Claire Bergkamp, Sustainability & Innovation Director, Stella McCartney 

Panel discussions 10:00 – 10:45

Panel Discussion: How to dress the world better: Bio-design and fashion

Chair: Helene Steiner, CCO & Co-Founder Cell-Free Technology; Director & Co-Founder Open Cell; Biomaterial Platform Lead, Royal College of Art


  • Claire Bergkamp, Sustainability & Innovation Director, Stella McCartney 
  • Zowie Broach, Head of Programme for Fashion, Royal College of Art
  • Marie-Sarah Adenis, Co-Founder & Creative Director, Pili
  • Sarah Mower, Chief Critic, Vogue
  • Dr Orr Yarkoni, CEO, Colorifix Ltd
Networking/Refreshments 10:45 – 11:15

Coffee Break

Presentations 11:15 – 12:30

Company Presentations: The synbio effect on healthcare

Multinational speaker: 
David Tew, Technical Project Lead, Biological Technologies, GSK

SME / Start-up speakers:

  • Adam Perriman, Academic Founder, CytoSeek
  • Geoff Baldwin, Founder, Cagen
  • Matthew Hicks, Director and Founder, Linear Diagnostics Ltd
  • Charlotte Casebourne, CEO, Theolytics
  • Edward Green, Founder & Chief Executive, Chain Biotech
  • Michael Linden, Chief Scientific Officer, Touchlight Genetics
Networking/Refreshments 12:30 – 13:30


Panel discussions 13:30 – 14:15

Panel Discussion: High impact investment opportunities in synthetic biology

  • Irina Haivas, Principal, Atomico
  • George Katzaros, Co-founder & Partner, Farm Street Partners
  • Melya Hughes Crameri, Partner, Ventac Partners 

Additional panellist TBC

Presentations 14:15 – 15:30

Company Presentations: Sustainable food
Technology & innovation to feed our exponentially growing population

Multinational speaker: 
Jason Vincent, Head of Synthetic Biology, Syngenta

SME / Start-up speakers:

  • Benjamina Bollag, CEO, Higher Steaks
  • Paul Hudman, Technical Director, 3F BIO
  • Oliver Severn, Research Manager, Singer Instruments
  • William Pelton, CEO, Phytoform

Plus 2 SME company presentations TBC​​​

Networking/Refreshments 15:30 – 16:00

Tea Break 

Presentations 16:00 – 17:00

Company Presentations: Synthetic materials affecting the future of humanity – Revolutionising existing million-dollar markets

SME / Start-up speakers:

  • Henrik Hagemann, CEO & Co-founder, CustoMem
  • Julian Melchiorri, CEO & Founder, Arborea
  • Clare Trippett, Technology and Innovation Officer, Centre for Process Innovation Ltd

Plus 3 SME company presentations TBC

Keynote 17:00 – 17:30

Synbio Unplugged: In conversation with Hermann Hauser

Hermann Hauser, Founder & Director, Amadeus Capital Partners

Keynote 17:30 – 18:00

Synbio Unplugged: An Overview of UK BioDesign

  • Dr. Thomas Meany, Co-Founder & Director, Open Cell
  • Natsai Audrey Chieza, Founder, Faber Futures
  • Pierre-Yves Paslier, Cofounder, Skipping Rocks Lab

Additional panellist TBC

Networking/Refreshments 18:00 – 20:00

Closing reception and networking 

Networking / Refreshments
Panel discussions