eVOLVER is a generalizable framework for automated cell growth and laboratory evolution.


We developed eVOLVER to help researchers tailor their experimental tools toward desired scientific objectives, rather than vice versa. Our goal is to enable researchers to map cell fitness to environmental spaces for applications across many fields, including directed/ experimental evolution, synthetic biology, and functional genomics. Modular hardware and software components of the framework make it easy to scale to many parallel cultures, program feedback between experimental parameters, and exchange or improve existing parameters.


Wong et al. Nature Biotechnology. volume 36, pages 614–623 (2018)




There are three main components of the framework.


1. Smart Sleeve

A 40 mL glass culture vial is housed in a Smart Sleeve integrated with sensors and actuators to control environmental parameters. Takes 10 minutes to build each sleeve.

2. Modular Hardware

We developed a plug-and-play hardware infrastructure to individually and dynamically control each culture vessel in the eVOLVER framework. 


3. Network-based tool

A single computer can control 100's of culture vessels in the eVOLVER framework. Internet connectivity is a key design feature that enables a highly scalable solution for continuous culture.