Richie E. Kohman, Ph.D

I am a research scientist who is intersted in the topic of personal identity from a genetic and neuroscientific perspective.  I am also an engineer who is interested in how changing your genes or your brain activity changes who you are.  At the heart of my curiosity is the classic nature/nurture debate - how much of who you are is the result of your “genes” and how much is the result of your personal life experiences?  After centruries of philosophical debate and scientific investigation, I think the answer is clear - it’s always both and it’s all biology.

This is my personal website which lists my technical background and scientific publications.   Additional profiles can be found at Google Scholar, LinkedIn, and ResearchGate as well as my personal Twitter account.  Currently, I am a Senior Staff Scientist and Lead of the Synthetic Biology Platorm at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University.  Along with Faculty Lead George Church, I oversee all research conducted by the Synthetic Biology Platform including advances in nucleic acid synthesis, in situ sequencing, gene editing, genome recoding, gene therapy, neurotechnology, stem cell engineering, extinct species resurrection, and all aspects relating to the intersection of synthetic biology and synthetic chemistry.  I was recently co-PI of an IARPA-funded project to map synaptic connectivity in large brain volumes and the main objective of my work is to develop technollogies which can transition out of academic environments and have real word impact.