Undergraduate iGEM team brings home gold
A group of undergraduates – mentored in part by MCB student Matt Smith – won first place in the Best Health and Medicine category in an international competition. Each year, a group of undergraduates at the University of Washington compete in the International Genetically Engineered Machine competition (iGEM). A team of students works together on a synthetic biology project for the better part of a year, then presents their work at an international conference before other teams and judges.
This year, the team focused on developing two “Twenty-first century antibiotics”. Half of the team were supported by the Mougous laboratory, and focused on subverting a naturally occuring inter-bacterial toxin-delivery system to target specific bacteria of interest. The other half of the team worked in the Baker laboratory on an antibacterial that targets anthrax. iGEM was started a few years ago by Ingrid Swanson, a Microbiology graduate student, and has grown dramatically each year.
If you are interested in participating as a graduate student mentor, check the local iGEM page for more information.