Justin Kipness

Fulbright/Imperial College London Award

Justin Kipness graduated from Brown University in 2024 with an ScB in Biology with honors and received the Elizabeth Leduc Prize in Cell Biology. As an undergraduate, Justin conducted astrobiology research with the Rothschild Lab at NASA Ames Research Center on topics spanning from endosymbiosis, eukaryogenesis, extremophiles, to the potential for life on Venus. His honors senior thesis was titled Endosymbiosis and Investigating the Phagotrophic Model of Eukaryogenesis. This work was conducted during an eighth month period in the Rothschild Lab at NASA Ames and supported by the NASA RI Space Grant. 
Justin’s interest in synthetic biology began in the Build-a-Cell community where he attended seminar series and the Build-a-Cell Workshop in Minneapolis. In Minneapolis, he was inspired by the immense potential synthetic biology held to answer origin of life and astrobiological questions. This Fulbright will give Justin the opportunity to study Systems and Synthetic Biology at Imperial College London. Specifically, he will be conducting research with the Ellis Lab on a synthetic nucleus project, a part of a larger synthetic eukaryote project. 
Outside of science, Justin enjoys hiking, cycling, cooking, reading, and spending time with his three dogs Bodhi, Skyler and Kelsey.