Andrew Gao โ€“ Developer, Researcher, Designer

Currently: @launchx, @thehelyxinitiative, @ccaigem, @catalystsciencemagazine

I'm a sophomore at Canyon Crest Academy in San Diego, California. I'm passionate about applying my coding skills to synthetic biology & biochemistry, and I use my design, language, and writing skills to make science more accessible.

I spread STEM in communities near and far.

ยป Attend my events!

๐Ÿ’ก My Core Values

Opportunities for all.

I appreciate the educational privileges I'm lucky to have today (although things weren't always this way). However, millions of people around the world are not as fortunate as I am. Thus, I strive to increase the amount of available opportunities to everyone. To these ends, I apply my coding skills, scientific knowledge, and multilingualism to help open up more opportunities and resources.

Coding is the future.

Coding is one of the most important skills in the 21st century. However, many students around the world do not have access to educational coding resources. I want to change that. To these ends, I volunteer with FIRST Global, and the Raspberry Pi Foundation to spread coding knowledge. I mentor robotics teams from Tanzania, Chad, and Suriname, and I translate coding curricula into Mandarin for Code Clubs, Raspberry Pi, Hour of Code, and others. I also founded and mentored an FLL robotics team in my community for 2 years and am currently helping a local school set up a robotics program for their students.

Spreading science.

I apply my science knowledge to educate the public. As a co-captain and project leader of CCA's iGEM team, I helped create curriculum for our summer synthetic biology camp and translated educational materials into Spanish and Portuguese, as well as organized the effort to translate into Hindi and Korean. Our yearly summer camp teaches many students about biology and research and gives them firsthand access to science experiments their schools don't have the resources for. This year as part of iGEM leadership, I am focusing my efforts on hosting more students at our summer camp and establishing more branches. Another thing I'm passionate about is the Helyx Initiative where students come together to learn bioinformatics, hands-on. Also, I volunteer with mirCore by educating other students and the public on opioids and their mechanisms of action and teaching lessons on topics such as microarrays.

๐Ÿƒ What am I up to?

I am currently working at The Helyx Initiative as executive director. I founded The Helyx Initiative to bridge the current existing gap in biology, coding, and math skills in public schools. Students learn these skills separately but not together. In the real world, these three disciplines are almost always united. The Helyx Initiative runs an online informative blog and journal, creates novel engaging curriculum, and is currently expanding around the world.

Visit some of my work below!

Helyx Logo


Hack the Helyx

June 2020 | Whole Day Event

Come to the first ever high school bioinformatics hackathon, organized by the Helyx Initiative! Form a team with your friends to code anything that streamlines, explains, or helps with biology research. No coding experience required at all.

๐Ÿ—ž๏ธ My Work

Title Type About
Bioreactor Patent Nitrogen/Oxygen Environment Modulation Device for Bacteria Culturing
Horizon 2.0 Research Project (group) Genetically engineering E. coli to degrade toxic oil compounds and convert byproducts into clean hydrogen energy
Auris App Free hearing test app developed at Cosmos
Deep Learning Image Analysis and Liquid Biopsy for Early Lung Cancer Detection Research Project Used targeted bisulfite padlock probing for enhanced DNA methylation sequencing to advance early lung cancer detection. Coded machine learning model that achieved 91% AUC-ROC and 86% accuracy for lung nodule classification.

๐Ÿ“ญ Let's Talk!

If you are interested in the things I do, or if you are hoping to do similar things in your communities, please reach out to me! I really love to talk to people like you, and I'm always happy to help out with your projects and programs through coding and design work.

You can always reach me by shooting me an email . Looking forward to talking to you!

Built with lots of โ˜•๏ธ in sunny San Diego.