October 2, 2011

Off to Boston!

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:26 am by igemkuleuven

After a long, long morning of speeches and presentations we we’re finally relieved of our tensions. We received a Gold Medal. But wait… we also get to go to Boston!

Unfortunately we can’t win all though we did get 2nd place for best presentation AND 3rd place for New Biobrick!

Now it’s time for some celebration!! See you at the next jamboree!

October 1, 2011

Other teams…

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:55 am by igemkuleuven

As the second session of presentations started, we splitted up and attended different sessions.

We were really impressed by the team of Denmark since they rethought the whole registry of standard parts… and replaced it by their own system! We also admired the work of ETH Zurich.

Now we are enjoying lunch and discovering the projects of other teams by looking at their posters.

To be continued!

Sadly, when the instructors were taking photos with Tom’s camera, one of his lenses fell on the ground and it doesn’t focus anymore..

Imperial College & Valencia

Posted in Uncategorized at 8:35 am by igemkuleuven

We’re in the environemntal tack of the iGEM competition and immediately after our presentation we could see how our direct competitors did it this summer.

We were really impressed by the tremendous amount of work that Imperial College did: they created a bacteria that can produce auxin. Their list of achievements was amazing!

At the moment Valencia is presenting their project on colicins in water. We’re very eager to find out what’s underneath their construction on the stage: something is standing there covered by a lab coat… Were wondering what they have in store for us!

Update: Valencia surprised us by bringing a lab set-up to test their project!

iGEMwatch @ our presentation

Posted in Uncategorized at 8:18 am by igemkuleuven

During this Jamboree some guys from Denmark, called the iGEMwatch, are providing everybody with their view on the projects and talks. Here’s what they had to say about us:


KU Leuven – E.D. Frosti: Controlling Ice Formation

Filed in 2011 | Europe Regionals | iGEM Leave a comment

Liveblogging from the KU Leuven presentation:


Q & A:

Q: Why did you combine two mechanisms in one organism instead of two?

A: The team wanted to create one organism that could do both things since they felt it was mor ein the spirit of the competition instead of creating two different organisms.


Tom and Alice are presenting their project – E.D. Frosti.

This project has two applications, promoting and inhibiting ice formations. The bacterium either produces ice nucleating proteins or anti-freeze proteins, dependent on the stimulus used. INPs promotes ice formation and AFPs promote ice melting.

The project consists these biobricks:

1. An arabinose induced AFP biobrick, that at the same timre represses INP formation.

2. A lactose induced INP biobrick, which also represses the formation of AFPs.

Suddenly a question pops up? Has the team created something dangerous? Are we due for another ice age because of ED Frosti?

To prevent that a suicide emchanism has been added to the bacteria:

3. The kill switch is activated by lactose or arabinose, but a ribo lock will prevent the transcription of CeaB the suicide inducing gene. The ribo lock opens up when the bacteria are presented to cold, so only after the desired proteins are produced and the bacteria have been released will they undergo apoptosis. Smart, huh?

Now the focus swings over to the team’s human practices efforts:

The team taught kids about synthetic biology, tried different laboratory procedures with them and asked them how they would use the team’s ice inducing/inhibiting bacteria. This was a great success and the team has been hired to repeat these children workshops in the future.

They also hosted a debate around synthetic biology at their university. The initial step of this was finding a definition of what synthetic biology is, an interesting question. One of their definitions was:

– Design and construction of biological parts, devices and systems.

80% of the people attending the debate thought that some GMOs would be dangerous, which is a huge number. Luckily the next chart shows that the team could change the opinion of at least 67% of the participants about synthetic biology.

The team ran through their achievements so fast that I could not really catch what worked and what did not, sorry!


In a few seconds KU Leuven will open the environmental track (morning session).

E.D. Frosti is out there!

Posted in Uncategorized at 8:09 am by igemkuleuven

Just a moment ago the big presentation of E.D. Frosti to the people gathered in room O0A04 ended!

Tom and Alice did a great job at presenting the whole project! In a very relaxed way, with some jokes, they told people about our achievements.

We got some interesting questions from the judges about the safety mechanisms we’ll have to use if we want to release E.D. Frosti in the real world outside the lab. Luckily this question was raised by Prof. Robben at our debate! All the judges complemented us on the unique way we combined our project with new insights in the field of human practices.

Hopefully we won our judges over and we can take E.D. Frosti overseas!

And now, the big moment is near…

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:21 am by igemkuleuven

In less then an hour now, Alice and Tom will present E.D.Frosti at the regional Jamboree in Amsterdam. Right after the opening of this Jamboree by the big chief Randy Rettburg himself, E.D. Frosti is one of the first projects to be presented to the world!

So everybody fingers crossed at 9:30 am!