Designing better culture conditions for fat
University of Colorado Boulder, United States
Who: Varsha Rao, Ph.D. student in chemical engineering
When: 2021 – Present
Institutes: University of Colorado Boulder, United States
Supervisors: Kristi Anseth, professor of chemical and biological engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder
Varsha is developing stem cell culture strategies that are optimized for fat production. She is studying how the material cells are grown on can impact their ability to turn into fat later on. By fine tuning this material and how the cells are grown on it, Varsha hopes to identify strategies to encourage the cells to grow rapidly and become fat.
Fat is an important component of meat that contributes to both the taste and texture, but can be hard to produce from cells grown in standard culture conditions for long periods of time. Her work is a step toward efficient and inexpensive fat production for cultured meat.