Evan Macosko has been named a top inventor in the MIT Technology Review’s “35 Innovators Under 35” for his work on inventing Drop-seq.
Evan’s Drop-seq technology, which he developed during his postdoctoral research in the McCarroll lab, makes it possible to analyze gene expression in thousands of individual cells simultaneously. Evan and technician Melissa Goldman wrote a detailed Drop-seq protocol that has been downloaded from the lab website tens of thousands of times. Hundreds of labs have built Drop-seq setups from their detailed instructions. Companies like 10X Genomics, Illumina, and Bio-Rad have worked to develop commercial versions of droplet-based single-cell RNA-seq.
MIT Technology Review’s ’35 Innovators Under 35” names influential young inventors, entrepreneurs, visionaries, humanitarians, and pioneers who are poised to become leaders in their fields. Based on a nomination, the judging panel selected Evan as a finalist and interviewed him via phone. They also asked him to write a description of his work for a lay audience. As recounted in that story, to develop Drop-seq, Evan read widely about oil-aqueous emulsions and their use to make such things as cosmetics and ice cream; he kept following his dream despite a string of failed experiments.
For his perseverance, Evan published a paper in Cell and now leads an academic lab at the Broad Institute, not to mention winning the hearts of the judging panel. He received a write-up in the MIT Technology Review’s October issue, now available on their website, and will give a 2.5-minute talk at their symposium, EmTech. He said a few people have called to congratulate him. However, he believes the true reward has come from enabling new kinds of scientific research in many areas. He hopes that this publicity will not only inspire excitement about Drop-seq, but will also attract scientists from more traditional fields to the field of genomics. “And maybe to my lab,” he adds with a smile.
We at the McCarroll lab cannot be more proud and wish him luck as he fills his new lab space with future colleagues and great science.