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powered technology

Nature is the most powerful platform on earth

Let's explore and engineer with biology


Maria Astolfi

Website under construction

Hi, I am so happy to meet you!

My name is Maria Astolfi

I am a Brazilian scientist passionate about the interface of biodiversity and synthetic biology

I did cell programming powered by artificial intelligence and automation @ Ginkgo Bioworks

I am currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Bioengineering @ University of California, Berkeley & San Francisco

I am the Head of Education @ iGEM Design. I run the @ iGEM Academy to empower Latinos and Latinas

I am the co-founder of the first SynBio lab in the Brazilian Amazon @ SynBio Amazonas

I co-founded a network to connect and empower the Brazilian SynBio Ecosystem @ SynBio Brasil

I am a Top 100 Young Leader shaping the Latin American bioeconomy @ Allbiotech

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I am from the heart of the Amazonian rainforest

Growing within nature inspired me to dream the bio-futures we can build in partnership with biodiversity


I am a synthetic biologist learning computational biology

Mining and deciphering the hidden technologies encoded in DNA can transform our lives and industries


I engage in global and equal scientific development

Creating bridges between developed and developing countries can enable innovation at social scales

I believe in political changes

Science is political. To overcome the emerging challenges of our society, we need political changes to build a better world for all


I write poetry and paint

Art is a tool to tell stories of the invisible; all the unheard, unseen but ever touched colors and cultures. I like building things with biology. 

I am so excited you are here!

f you are in the Bay Area, I would love to meet you!

If you are anywhere else in the world, book a meeting with me.

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Thank you. Obrigada. Gracias.

Frequently asked resources 

Speaker bio--thanks for the invitation!


Maria Astolfi é uma bióloga sintética e desenvolvedora de software biológico. Aos 16 anos, Maria co-fundou o primeiro núcleo de Biologia Sintética da Amazônia (@synbioamazonas) para transformar biodiversidade em tecnologias sustentáveis. Biotecnóloga pela Federal do Amazonas, Maria recebeu mais de 10 prêmios em institutos renomados internacionalmente, como no MIT (EUA), Naçōes Unidas (Itália), UBA (Argentina), U. Mayor (Chile) e Allbiotech (México) e é autora de patentes e artigos no Brasil e nos Estados Unidos. Maria foi a primeira mulher brasileira engenheira da Ginkgo Bioworks, a maior empresa de biologia sintética do mundo em Boston, onde aprendeu a programar DNA de células a partir de engenharia metabólica, inteligência artificial e automação. Hoje, Maria é Ph.D. candidate na Universidade da Califórnia em São Francisco e Berkeley, melhor universidade dos EUA conforme a Forbes 2021. Maria é engajada no desenvolvimento global da biologia sintética, onde co-fundou a iGEM Design @igemdesign e e a Associação Brasileira de Biologia Sintética @synbiobrasil. É atualmente Head of Education da Fundação iGEM para América Latina. Apaixonada pela intersecção entre biodiversidade, biologia sintética e inovação, Maria acredita que o futuro da tecnologia é biologia.


Maria Astolfi is a synthetic biologist and biological software developer. At 15 years old, Maria co-founded the first synthetic biology lab from the Amazon rainforest [@synbioamazonas] to engineer biodiversity into sustainable technologies. An alumnus from the Federal University of Amazonas, Maria is internationally recognized through awards and grants by more than 10 renowned institutes, such as MIT (USA), United Nations IDO (Italy), UBA (Argentina), U. Mayor (Chile), and Allbiotech (Mexico). Maria is the author of patents and articles in Brazil and the USA. Maria was the first Brazilian woman engineer at Ginkgo Bioworks (Boston, USA) where she learned automated cell programming powered by metabolic engineering, machine-learning, and high-throughput screen. Currently, Maria is a Ph.D. in Bioengineering at the University of California, San Francisco & Berkeley, USA's top university according to Forbes 2021. Maria is committed to the global development of synthetic biology where she co-founded iGEM Design @igemdesign and the Brazilian SynBio Association @synbiobrasil. Currently, she is the Head of Education in the iGEM Foundation for Latin America. Passionate by the intersection between biodiversity, synbio, and innovation, Maria believes that the future of tech is bio. 

2021 headshot (speaker photo)

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