Defense Advanced Research Projects AgencyTagged Content List

Harness Biological Systems

Leveraging genetic technologies to engineer synthetic or natural organisms

Showing 8 results for Bio-systems + Disease RSS
DARPA’s Biological Technologies Office develops capabilities that embrace the unique properties of biology—adaptation, replication, complexity—and applies those features to revolutionize how the United States defends the homeland and prepares and protects its Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines. BTO is helping the Department of Defense to counter novel forms of bioterrorism, deploy innovative biological countermeasures to protect U.S. forces, and accelerate warfighter readiness and overmatch to confront adversary threats.
09/18/2017
DARPA has enjoyed a strong relationship with Silicon Valley since the early 1960s, working with innovators to lay the groundwork for new industries built around Agency investments in semiconductors, networking, artificial intelligence, user interfaces, programming, materials, microsystems, and more. Biotech is now emerging as a breakthrough opportunity space and it represents an area that is ripe for fresh collaboration among DARPA, the nation’s top researchers, venture capitalists, and entrepreneurs.
05/25/2018
Protection against many common pathogens and environmental stressors is written into our DNA. Our skin responds to sun exposure. Our immune system mounts defenses when we get the flu. Our bodies inherently work to mitigate the potential for harm caused by these health threats. However, these intrinsic responses are not always quick, robust, or appropriate enough to adequately defend us from harm, which is why many people experience sunburn after intense sun exposure or suffer severe symptoms, even death, following exposure to the flu.
June 13, 2018,
Westin Arlington Gateway Hotel
DARPA’s Biological Technologies Office is hosting a Proposers Day meeting to provide information to potential applicants on the structure and objectives of the new PReemptive Expression of Protective Alleles and Response Elements (PREPARE) program. PREPARE will explore ways to better protect against biological, chemical, or radiological threats by temporarily and reversibly tuning gene expression to bolster the body’s defenses against—or directly neutralize—a given threat. It will focus on four key health challenges as proofs of concept: influenza viral infection, opioid overdose, organophosphate poisoning, and exposure to gamma radiation.
Pathogens with pandemic potential, toxic chemicals, and radioactive materials all endanger public health and pose a threat to national security. Despite investment in the development of medical countermeasures (MCMs) to address these threats, many existing MCMs suffer from limited applicability, insufficient efficacy, requirements for repeat dosing, lengthy and complex manufacturing processes, and logistically burdensome storage requirements. In many cases, unique threats require unique responses, setting up a “one threat, one MCM” paradigm.