Meet the Scholars

Updated: September 24, 2015

Andrew Scarpelli

Andrew Scarpelli

CBC Scholar: Class of 2012
PhD Candidate, Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, NU; Advisor: Joshua Leonard




While huge advances have been made in engineering production of medically relevant compounds in bacteria, the process is hugely time and labor intensive. My project is part of an international collaboration looking to design a methodology for the dynamic and tunable assembly of synthetic operons which allow bacteria to self-assemble complex operons for the synthesis of relevant drugs and molecules. Specifically, my project is working on ways for bacteria to reliably exchange genetic information upon induction with a small molecule in a manner controlling gene directional flow and rate.



Pitner RA, Scarpelli AH, Leonard JN. Regulation of bacterial gene expression by protease-alleviated spatial sequestration (PASS). ACS Synth Biol. 2015 Sep 18;4(9):966-74. (PubMed)



  • Judge, Chicago Public Schools Student Science Fair, March 2013
  • Judge, Chicago Public Schools Student Science Fair, March 2012
  • CBC Scholar 2012-2013
  • A lab tour guide at the McCormick school’s 40th Annual Career Day for Girls, 2011
  • Teagle Fellowship 2010
  • Writer for the Northwestern Science and Society Blog