From 2 to 5 November 2012 a team of students from the Laboratory of Systems and Synthetic Biology and the Laboratory of Microbiology took part in the “World Championships” iGEM in Boston.
The team from Groningen has been named the best team worldwide, but the iGEM-team from Wageningen also did an excellent job. It was one of the best 16 teams, the so called “sweet sixteen”.
The International Genetically Engineered Machine competition (iGEM) is the premiere undergraduate Synthetic Biology competition. Student teams are given a kit of biological parts at the beginning of the summer from the Registry of Standard Biological Parts. Working at their own schools over the summer, they use these parts and new parts of their own design to build biological systems and operate them in living cells. This project design and competition format is an exceptionally motivating and effective teaching method.
Worldwide 190 student-teams competed against each other in the preliminary rounds. Three Dutch teams (Groningen, Delft and Wageningen) went on to the World Championships. The team from Wageningen build “Virus-Like Particles” that are meant to transport medication to the sick cells in the body. More information about the team can be found here.
Soon the preparation for iGEM 2013 will start. Students who are interested in participating can contact Mark van Passel at firstname.lastname@example.org.