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Cambridge iGEM 2010 Success

last modified Dec 12, 2013 02:35 PM

Out of over 120 teams the Cambridge iGEM team made the final six. They won the best Wiki prize, iGEMers prize (most helpful team) and a gold medal for the high standard of project results, reporting, contribution of resources.

As a future projection, the team made a computational model that estimated that 0.02% of daylight absorbed by a tree could power bioluminescence through the night. The project attracted a lot of media attention and was reported in The New Scientist and the Daily Mail.

The Cambridge iGEM 2010 team's project was to develop better bioluminescence resources for the synthetic biology community Starting with firefly luciferase, they codon optimised the genes for expression in E. coli and co-expressed the luciferin regenerating enzyme. This produced a much brighter and sustained light output. They also made several luciferase colour variants from known point mutations in the luciferase gene. They also configured the light generating lux operon from Vibrio fischeri for expression in E. coli. The resulting bacteria produced enough light to read a book in the dark. To assist in cloning, the team made some online tools for a new method of DNA assembly that was developed at the J. Craig Venter Institute. The team's musical tribute to the method was mentioned in Craig Venter's Twitter page.