Next Synthetic Biology Creation: Lab-Brewed Milk

Washington Post | July 21, 2014


Biohackers Ryan Pandya and Perumal Gandhi are crafting a plant-based concoction that’s nearly identical in taste and nutritional makeup to cow’s milk.

They’ve gone so far as to modify sunflower oil so that it can take on a structural composition similar to milk fats; substitute lactose with galactose, a nearly indistinguishable sugar; and culture yeast to release casein, a protein found in animal milk. If successful, their process might someday be used to churn out milk and a wide range of dairy products, such as cheese, butter and yogurt.

The duo, both with bioengineering backgrounds, are the co-founders of Muufri, a San Francisco-­based start-up that hopes to fashion lab-brewed milk as a humane alternative to milk from animals. Funded by the Synthetic Biology Accelerator program of Singularity University…

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