Revision as of 03:59, 26 October 2010 by Kimf (Talk | contribs)



Design and Document BioBrick Parts and DNA submission

We characterized and uploaded 31 new parts to the Registry of Parts. These were:

  • 11 Plasmids
  • 15 ORFs
  • 4 Linkers
All submitted parts have been verified as the correct size using test digests and gel electrophoresis. Sequencing files are posted on the Parts Registry as advanced sequence analyses.

Beyond our additions to the Registry of Parts we also have parts that will work with GENOMIKON that could not be uploaded to the registry because they are created from oligonucleotides.

BioByte 2.0 Method

The BioByte 2.0 system was engineered to allow for the fast and efficient assembly of BioBytes into large constructs. This was shown to work in multiple on-bead assemblies which included the construction of a 12kBp long octamer and construction of multiple plasmids that were successfully transformed into E. coli. The successful construction and transformation of E. coli with plasmids created using the BioByte 2.0 method was a major accomplishment of this years project. All of our parts have been tested in PCR's and shown to give a product of the correct size

Demonstration of New Parts

All of the 31 parts uploaded to the Registry of Parts are new and conform to the BioBrick standard. All of our RFP plasmids work as we designed them to and can be used to rapidly create BioByte 2.0 parts. These BioBytes can subsequently be used to assemble DNA constructs.

Characterization of New Parts

All of the 31 new parts that were uploaded to the Registry of Parts were tested extensively as this was required for their operation in the BioByte 2.0 system as documented. All the parts were checked using PCR and gel electrophoresis to ensure proper size. The untransformed constructs that were made, including the octamer, were shown using gel electrophoresis to be of expected length. All of the parts that worked in the transformation experiments have been shown to work in vivo. This also shows that they all work within the BioByte 2.0 assembly standard.

Helping Other iGEM Teams

Out team members completed many of the online questioners that were distributed by the other iGEM teams. In addition to this we sent in our funny pictures to the Cuckoo Clock competition.

We also had a two day conference called aGEM with the University of Calgary and the University of Lethbridge. At aGEM we critiqued each teams projects and gave helpful insights into the respective strengths of each team's projects. We also met with a variety of people who have a hand in synthetic biology and talked with them about their thoughts on synthetic biology and our project.

Development of The BioByte 2.0 Standard

The BioByte 2.0 standard was designed and developed by our team for this years competition. It allows the assembly of BioBytes into large constructs. BioByte 2.0 did not require the production of a new BBF standard as BioByte 2.0 parts are BioBrick compliant. For more information on the BioByte 2.0 standard see our BioByte 2.0 page.

GENOMIKON The Educational Tool-Kit

The major focus of our project was to create an inexpensive synthetic biology tool-kit that could be used in a high school setting. We have tested our BioByte 2.0 system with a group of high school students and they successfully constructed a 4-piece assembly and transformed it into E. coli. This represents a huge innovation beyond the current capacities of high school labs and may help garner a wave of excitement in synthetic biology in subsequent generations of school children.


Best Human Practices Advance

Our project cumulated in the idea of GENOMIKON, an educational tool-kit that allows high-school students to design their own plasmids using our online lab manual But GENOMIKON doesn't stop there, it then opens up a world of possibilities by allowing the students to create the plasmids they have designed and transform them into E. coli. This is truly an innovation in the way molecular and synthetic biology are taught to the upcoming generations of students. Aymen Saidane, one of the high school students who used the kit, described GENOMIKON as the "Application of what [he] learned in high school". Although this innovation is a huge step it will not change the future of education if it cannot get into the hands of students so our team also created a hypothetical business plan that outlines the entry of GENOMIKON into the markets. The business plan can be found distribution analysis and a detailed look at our human practices achievements can be seen on our human practices

Best New Standard

The BioByte 2.0 standard is an innovation in the way DNA pieces are assembled into multi-piece constructs. With the BioByte 2.0 system all the parts that are created still fit the BioBrick standard and as such offer a maximum utility to users of the Registry of Parts. The BioByte 2.0 method is:

  • Fast -The addition of a piece to a growing construct takes 7 minutes.
  • Efficient -The BioByte 2.0 construction system was modeled as 96% efficient and has produced plasmids that have been successfully transformed into E. coli.
  • Modular -The BioByte 2.0 system allows for the production of your own BioBytes by PCR which can be cloned into our RFP plasmids or used directly in the assembly of a DNA construct.
  • Sequential -The BioByte 2.0 system's sequential addition of parts and anchoring to an iron micro bead allows for complete control of the construction of your DNA assembly.
  • In Vitro - By making BioBytes 2.0 an in vitro system it allows the system to be specific and fast. The parts that can be made allow for the in vitro production of plasmids that can be cloned into an organism to interface our in vitro system to living systems.
The BioByte 2.0 assembly method is simple to understand and we have shown that it can be carried out by high school students. Beyond the educational value it can also be used in fundamental basic research as well as application based research because of the strengths of the system. The full details of the BioByte 2.0 method can be found at BioByte 2.0

Team Alberta in the Media