GENEART Supports iGEM Contest for the Third Year in a Row
News Jun 24, 2009
GENEART AG supports the international iGEM (International Genetically Engineered Machine) contest for applications in Synthetic Biology for the third time in a row.
Student teams spend their summer holidays constructing, with the help of standardized exchangeable building blocks from DNA (DNA: deoxyribonucleic acid/genetic material), for instance bacteria with which cancer cells can be specifically destroyed or environmental toxins such as arsenic can be detected and degraded.
According to GENEART, this year 112 international teams, each under the direction of leading scientists in the area of Synthetic Biology, compete for the most innovative idea. The contest has seen a rapid development since its inauguration in 2004 and is now considered to be one of the largest international scientific competitions
All DNA building blocks developed within the scope of iGEM to date - by now more than 1,000 - are collected in a kind of library and are available to all iGEM teams for their projects as well. The goal of the contest is to combine already existing DNA building blocks with self developed constructions and thus create complex bio-systems with new functions.
As partner of the contest, GENEART will provide 280.000 base pairs to the participants to produce new DNA fragments. At the same time, GENEART provides financial support for the competition. The prizes are presented in October at the iGEM award ceremony at the campus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, MA (USA).
In treating inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), physicians can have a hard time telling which newly diagnosed patients have a high risk of severe inflammation or what therapies will be most effective. Now researchers report finding an epigenetic signature in patient cells that appears to predict inflammation risk in a serious type of IBD called Crohn’s disease.