IGEM:Harvard/2007/Brainstorming/405

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Project Ideas from Second Meeting (04/05/07)

Additional notes added by Stephanie; please contact her with questions.

  • Selection mechanisms for key/lock riboregulators (see 2006 Berkeley Project)

- Though sequence complementary is necessary, which allows little variation in that region, the rest of the RNA might differ
- The RNA acts as a "key" to release the lock; only when both are present, allows for expression
- This can allow for creation of networks, if the expression "unlocked" is for another key
- Monitored by Red Fluorescent Protein, experimentally
- Advantage = fast response
- Can be used for either activation or inhibition
- Suggestion: look into the Duke group: human encryption

  • Biofuel & light sensitive proton pump (see background reading #3) (Pseudomonas Putida for exportation of short chain alkanes)
  • Powering medical devices

- Bacteria that can extract energy from sugars in blood and convert these to electricity
- Question posed: how often do the devices need energy? A: Depends on specific devices
- Related idea: implantable devices that release, or even synthesize, drugs

  • Artificial cells
  • Use of psuedomonas putida? (bacterial strain)

- High tolerance to many saturated alkanes (can we get it to form octane?)
- Issue: export vs. metabolism

  • Quorum sensing and biofilms
  • Mirror image proteins
  • Nonribosomal synthesis of proteins
  • Radon sensor (practical considerations of working with Radon)


Short discussion of project logistics: rather than attempting to tackle multiple projects at once (as we will tend to be overambitious!), perhaps we can propose a sequence of experiments that we would like to attempt over the summer. We should treat these as 'checkpoints' and finish one before proceeding to the next.

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