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Microbiome Therapies Initiative (MITI)

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Harnessing the power of microbial communities to develop new treatments for disease

The Microbiome Therapies Initiative (MITI) aims to understand and manipulate the diverse communities of microbes that live on and in humans to develop new kinds of therapeutics.

A partnership between Sarafan ChEM-H and the Department of Bioengineering, MITI was established in 2019 with an ambitious goal: learn how to change the genetics and the composition of the complex bacterial communities in our gut and on our skin. By developing a complete toolset for engineering the microbiome, MITI aims to create new therapies for diseases like inflammatory bowel disease, liver disease, autoimmune disease and cancer.

MITI Leadership

Executive Committee

Carolyn Bertozzi, professor of chemistry
Michael Fischbach, associate professor of bioengineering
Justin Sonnenburg, associate professor of microbiology & immunology

Advisory Committee

Jennifer Doudna, professor of biochemistry and molecular biology, UC Berkeley
Steve Quake, professor of bioengineering and applied physics
Christopher Walsh, emeritus professor, Harvard Medical School

Scientists and Technicians

Meet the researchers at the heart of MITI


Core Members

Ami Bhatt, associate professor of medicine and genetics
Dylan Dodd, assistant professor of pathology and microbiology & immunology
Michael Fischbach, associate professor of bioengineering
KC Huang, professor of bioengineering and microbiology & immunology
David Relman, professor of medicine and microbiology & immunology
Elizabeth Sattely, associate professor of chemical engineering
Justin Sonnenburg, associate professor of microbiology & immunology

“This initiative is a perfect reflection of the ChEM-H vision of bringing together chemistry, engineering and medicine to revolutionize therapeutic development and to improve human health.” 

Carolyn Bertozzi
Baker Family Director, Sarafan ChEM-H; Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of Chemistry and HHMI Investigator

MITI in the news


Contact Amy Jacobson, Associate Director