The UCSF team has fulfilled the following criteria to meet the gold medal requirements:

1. Submitted new BioBrick parts (BBa_K321003 & BBa_K321004) and entered detailed information regarding these parts in the Registry of Parts. The information included a demonstration of the parts’ functions and characterization of their operation. [Silver Medal requirements]

2. Characterized an existing BioBrick Part and entered this information back on the Registry. [Gold Medal requirement]

Our team has further characterized the BioBrick part BBa_k209400 by showing a previously unknown cellular function conferred by this part. Developed by the UCSF 2009 iGEM team, the HM4D synthetic GPCR part was originally found to successfully mediate neutrophil chemotaxis towards the synthetic ligand CNO. (See project Cell-Bots) As the process of chemotaxis involves activation of cellular kinases, we hypothesized that this synthetic GPCR might enhance the Killer cell killing signal, which is the focus of our project this year and also involves cellular kinases. When we incorporated this part into killers cells, we found that it significantly increased killer cell activation. See the results here.

3. Assisted other iGEM teams with their projects. [Gold Medal requirement]

In collaboration with Paris Liliane Bettencourt and Peking University, the UCSF team has contributed to developing a variety of visual protocols for techniques widely used in synthetic biology. (See Paris Liliane Bettencourt's collaboration page) These protocol images are being used in openProtocol by Paris Liliane Bettencourt to help write consensus protocols for common laboratory techniques.

PDF versions of some of the visual protocols:

PCR Purification


In addition to the visual protocols, the UCSF team has helped teams Metu Turkey, Penn State, and Warsaw with their surveys. These surveys covered the topics of Categorizing Registry Parts, Genetically Modified Organisms, and Synthetic Biology.