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UCL iGEM 2016 | BioSynthAge


Student team members

The UCL iGEM 2016 team would like to thank all the individuals who have assisted us throughout the project, and without whom the project would not have been possible. Especially our project supervisors and advisers who have provided us with immeasurable expertise and guidance! Given the novelty of our project, we have relied on the help of a huge range of individuals and we extend our gratitude to every single one of them. For a full list of acknowledgements, please see below.

All work on this wiki was carried out by the student members and all data collected by us unless stated otherwise. Work by our team members:

  • Abbie Rogan: Mainly worked on bringing our lycopene biobrick to life, planning the construct design, protocols, running the experiment as well as helping out with our human practices!
  • Amandeep Varia: Worked on designing the wiki pages, as well as uploading and organizing wiki content. She was also involved with organising the human practice events and bringing our SOD therapy idea to life.
  • Dale Stibbs: Mainly working in the labs, conducting nearly all of the experiments for all biobricks, continuously not giving up on our pH promoter.
  • Kamil Zmijewski: Designed most of our biobrick constructs and was responsible for bringing our dental ideas to life! He is also heavily involved in the lab, conducting the experiments for our silver medal and mastered the incredible art of PCR!
  • Hana Janebdar: Worked on our entrepreneurial ideas including Xylitol and Alphabrick. She is one of the founders of the Alphabrick software and is working on collaborations.
  • Michelle Ammann: Helped conduct many of our human practices events, as well as conducting some experiments in the lab such as data for our irre biobrick!
  • Neythen Treolar: Neythen is the maker of our app (game master) as well as one of the student members who is involved with our modelling.
  • Jakub Domaradski: Jakub is responsible for bringing our pH sensitive biobrick to life, he planned protocols.
  • Chinyere Ihuegbu: Our team motivator! Chichi has helped with organising many of our human practices events such as religion and synbio. She is also heavily involved in the lab, where she powers on even after multiple failures! She is mainly responsible for our lycopene experiments and helping Kamil in the labs!
  • Yuqiao Liu: Mainly involved with winning us our $5000 grant from Syngenta and had come up with our vitellogenin idea! He is also organising some human practices events.

Doctoral supervisor Team Members

  • Luba Prout: For every new protocol, lab experiment and every small query, we would like to express our humble gratitude to Luba for being there at every step of our project.
  • Kasia Kozdon: We are very grateful to Kasia who help us with modelling our Xylitol and L-arginine models and gave us a lot of advice for our human practices and wiki coding!
  • Michael Sibley: Thank you to Mike, for always being available help us with planning our experiments, looking over our protocols and giving general advice.
  • Victoria Wood: Thank you to Victoria, who always helped with providing us advice on our experiments and helping us keep organised.
  • Ivano Colao: Thank you to Ivano, who gave us a lot of advice on how to approach our oxidative stress experiments, giving us presentation coaching and lab advice.
  • Lara Fernandez: Thank you to Lara, for answering any small query we had and giving us advice and guidance on our project

Student Consultants

  • Jesus Miguens Blanco: We are very grateful to Jesus (no pun intended), he really helped us through answering any questions we had, to helping us with any protocols, experiments, motivating the team as well as entertaining us!
  • Enrique de Zamacona Meza: We are also very grateful to Enrique who always helped us with anything we were struggling with, from presentation organizing to helping us with our wiki. Enrique also worked closely with Hana on our entrepreneurial ideas, developing our constructs and designs.
  • Yash Mishra: Thank you to Yash, for giving us his advice and guidance as well as allowing us to use his data showing how oxidative stress affects proteins.


  • Dr. Darren Nesbeth: We are very thankful to Darren, our project supervisor who was providing the team with a lot of support and guidance! Thank you to Darren for motivating us and for all the meetings from discussing the project plan to biobricks.
  • Dr. Vitor Pinheiro: We want to extend our kind gratitude to Dr. Pinheiro for his continuous advice, support and guidance on or project. His advice and guidance has helped us scrutinize and improve every aspect of the project.
  • Prof. John Ward: for all his help and advice concerning our bacteriocin producing BioBrick. Thank you for giving us your S.Mutans strain!
  • Dr. Chris Barnes and Dr Alexandros Kiparissides: Thank you for helping us with the tricky modelling.


Host labs: Biochemical engineering labs UCL

We were hosted and carried out all our work in the lab facilities of the Biochemical Engineering department of UCL. There, we were kindly provided with all the materials and machinery needed to carry out all our molecular biology and mammalian cell culture experiments.

  • Patrick at Security Thank you for being so friendly every morning and night and helping us try to find our way around the building - we are going to miss seeing your face every day.
  • Kim Morgan Thank you for discussing the action plan of human practices right at the start and filtering through our ideas and plans. We are also grateful for you making time for us and taking photos at events when we were all participating so couldn't get camera happy ourselves!
  • Brian O'Sullivan Thank you for ensuring our safety and welcoming us into the department as well as your advice with regards to risk assessments.
  • Amanda Cain, Chris Taylorson and Suzanne Ruddy We really appreciated your enthusiasm and advice to us about our project, as well as enabling us to take part in the week long Sutton Trust summer school for Biosciences and trusting us to run an academic session within the week.
  • Mike Sulu Thank you for helping us and replying to emails immediately- especially when trying to find incubators with particular conditions
  • Tanel Ozdemir We are very grateful for your help with designing the protocol for stressing our lycopene expressing cells.

  • Difficult technique support

  • Sadfer Ali: Thank you to Sadfer, for providing a lot of advice and guidance on how to do experiments with lentivirus for our SOD therapy idea.
  • Dr. Daryl Williams and Sarah Hedberg from the Imperial College London: We are very grateful for their contributions to the data for our Oxidative Stress promoter.

  • Wiki support
    • Evgeny Saveliev: We are very thankful to Evgeny, who is not part of iGEM, but had willingly helped us code our wiki website!

    Human practices

  • Sir Keir Starmer, KCB, QC: For providing us with a very insightful view on our project from a public policy and law perspective and for giving us a chance to make a massive impact by submitting our parliamentary question to the houses of parliament.
  • Aubrey de Grey: We are specially grateful to our main inspiration and benchmark in our this whole ‘Biosynthage’ adventure. It was a wonderful experience talking to you as well as being very helpful for the further development of our project.
  • James Blackstock: who kindly answered all our questions about bioethics and public policy.
  • Dementia home in Hamburg: We really appreciate the elderly people in the Dementia home who answering tonnes of questions about age-related diseases, our project, sharing with us some of your personal experiences.