Jing-Ke Weng received his B.S. (2003) in Biotechnology from Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China. He received his Ph.D. (2009) in Biochemistry from Purdue University, and was a pioneer postdoctoral fellow at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and Howard Hughs Medical Institute between 2009 and 2013. Currently he is a member of the Whitehead Institue for Biomedical Research, and a Thomas D. and Virginia W. Cabot Assistant Professor of Biology at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dr. Weng's research focuses on understanding the origin and evolution of plant specialized metabolism at enzyme, pathway, and systems levels, as well as how plants exploit discrete small molecules to interact with their surrounding biotic and abiotic environments. Through synthetic biology and metabolic engineering approaches, he develops new platforms for producing high-value natural products in a sustainable manner. In addition, he utilizes plant as a unique model system to study human diseases, including metabolic syndromes and protein-misfolding diseases. Dr. Weng has won numerous awards in his career, including Beckman Young Investigator (2016), Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow (2016), Searle Scholar (2015), Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences (2014), American Society of Plant Biologists Early Career Award (2014), and Tansley Medal for Excellence in Plant Science (2013).