2020 Ph.D. Graduate Learned How to Cultivate Meat in the Lab While at Kent State
Among those receiving their doctoral degrees from Kent State this fall is Jessica Krieger. She will receive her Ph.D. in biomedical sciences – cellular and molecular biology. Through her dissertation work, she wanted to learn the basics of how to grow meat in a lab.
While at Kent State, she gained experience working with cell lines and learned tissue engineering (including skeletal muscle and fat cells as well as blood vessels) techniques that can be applied to different kinds of meat products, like beef or pork.
“We’ve had some great collaborators at Kent State, particularly Dr. Oleg Lavrentovich at Advanced Materials and Liquid Crystal Institute and his graduate student, Taras Turiv, Ph.D.,” Krieger said. “We also had collaborators over at NEOMED who helped us use some of their equipment, including this really fancy microscope which helps us image it to the pork tissue that I’m growing. And, we also collaborate with a meat scientist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a chemical engineering group at MIT to help us figure out how to grow cow cells and pig cells and bioreactors.”
Krieger said that eventually, they’ll be able to use this meat to create entire cultivated meat products and feed people all over the world. She took all this knowledge and research experience from the lab to the marketplace as the co-founder and chief scientific officer of Artemys Foods, a recent startup in the San Francisco area.
She became interested in figuring out how to reverse engineer meat and grow it from cell culture technology, without the animal, 10 years ago upon learning that the animal agricultural industry is unsustainable and contributes to climate change, greenhouse gases and deforestation of the rainforests.
“I knew that the demand for meat was going to double by 2050,” Krieger said. “It’s really important for us to find a solution where we don’t have to use animal agriculture to produce the meat products that we love.”
Jim Maxwell, 330-672-8028, firstname.lastname@example.org