Your molecular biology workflows made reliable, repeatable, and transferable.

about aquarium

Aquarium allows you to build reproducible, scalable, and transferable experimental workflows integrated with sample tracking, data collection, laboratory activity, and supply chain management. The Aquarium Operating SystemTM (Aquarium OSTM) goes beyond lab notebooks, materials and methods sections, and patent abstracts, to digital protocols encoded in our proprietary protocol language. The result is a complete end-to-end, customizable research platform for your lab. Based on a prototype developed by the Klavins lab at the University of Washington, Aquarium enables researchers to design and execute complex projects, such as the construction of advanced genetic circuits, in weeks instead of months or years with a high level of reproducibility.


Klavins 3d95ce848bf2c119e271e22a2f632b9829c4ac7c32f9e032f09a5d9c1dabcf83
Eric Klavins
PhD, Co-founder and CSO
Merrill 246fde58e95bdee902fe8697a1297187c2777b18e4e66ddebf596dfc5782b8d5
Mark Merrill
Co-founder and COO
Niles 6fbe00b999c9c7784da58a4f8b7b554d2c932f156458defe0d252faf3e765241
Sylvain Niles
Lead Developer
Yang d80b73ac0c51b3652ba9e975c082a1c1924323deccb5dde20fa757d21f651c44
Yaoyu Yang
Workflow Engineer
Baker db6b2b347bbfadff55288cd7fb3d66910c7377c7b5656633ba2705f64768ca1f
David Baker
PhD, Scientific Advisor
Knight cbb455e0bbd3c3ec4cc533b38e90e3803204288b8621110b86aec8925ee4abb2
Tom Knight
PhD, Scientific Advisor

Eric is the inventor of and lead software architect for the Aquarium platform. Eric received his Ph.D. degree in Computer Science and Engineering in 2001 from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and held a postdoctoral scholar position at Caltech from 2001 to 2003. He is now an Associate Professor with positions in Electrical Engineering, Computer Science and Engineering, and Bioengineering, and is the Director of the Center for Synthetic Biology at the University of Washington in Seattle. Eric's background is in computer science, control systems, robotics, and manufacturing. He presently leads a synthetic biology lab focused on synthetic multicellular systems with engineered bacteria and yeast, modeling and design of synthetic multicellular systems, and laboratory automation.

Mark is a managing director at Griffin Securities, Inc., where he specializes in identifying and analyzing emerging science and technology, with a particular interest in biotechnology and synthetic biology, and facilitating its translatability to commercial value. He is a member of the founding group of Agilis Biotherapeutics, LLC, a biotechnology company advancing innovative DNA therapeutics for patients with debilitating, often fatal, rare genetic diseases that affect the central nervous system. Mark serves as a board member of Genspace, the world’s first community biotechnology laboratory. He is a Charter Financial Analyst (CFA) charterholder and holds a BA in Economics, with Distinction, from Carleton College.

Sylvain Niles is the lead developer for the Aquarium platform. Sylvain has over two decades of experience in technology, most recently out of Couchsurfing International where he re-architected and wrote the entire codebase from scratch, cut over 7 million users to the new system, while building and mentoring a team to support it. With his experience building teams and healthy software development practices he's helping Aquarium become a serious game changer in the molecular biology space.

Yaoyu Yang is a Ph.D. student in Electrical Engineering at the University of Washington. He received his B.S. in Automation from Shanghai Jiao Tong University in 2011. He began his graduate study in UW EE in fall 2011 and found himself fascinated by the emerging area of synthetic biology. He joined Klavins lab since then and is working on several projects in synthetic biology with the aim of designing, building and characterizing engineered biological system to process information and perform computation. His research spans experimental, theoretical, and software engineering. He has been instrumental in implementing high quality, reproducible workflows in the Klavins lab using the Aquarium software.

David is a Professor at the University of Washington; Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) investigator; elected to the National Academy of Sciences; and elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is the driving force behind the Rosetta suite of protein engineering tools which are used in academic and industrial labs throughout the world. David has been instrumental in using distributed computing to solve structures of proteins with Rosetta and Foldit and is responsible for numerous scientific breakthroughs and firsts in computational modeling of protein structures and design of novel proteins. He is a co-founder of Arzeda Corporation, and a scientific advisor for Cyrus Biotechnology.

Tom is widely regarded as a father of the synthetic biology field from his work at MIT, which followed seminal work in early networking technology and artificial intelligence at the MIT Computer Science and AI Laboratory, a part of the MIT School of Engineering. He has an extraordinary record of serial innovation in different fields and is orginator of the first widely used standard for DNA parts. Tom was a driving force behind International Genetic Engineered Machine (iGEM) competition and the Registry of Standard parts. He is a co-founder of Ginkgo Bioworks, which engineers high value biochemical pathways in microbes, and is one of the early proponents of the programmable laboratory concept.

contact us

Aquarium, LLC
c/o CoMotion Incubator
Fluke Hall
4000 Mason Road
Seattle, WA 98195