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Team:UPF-CRG Barcelona


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Team:UPF-CRG Barcelona

Polybiome

A PROJECT BY UPF-CRG BARCELONA iGEM TEAM


The past October 2015 the World Health Organization publicly announced that the consumption of processed meats could, in a long term, increase the probabilities of developing cancer. According to many underlying studies, the polyamines, a group of natural and essential molecules for growth and cell development, were found to be responsible for this carcinogenic activity when they are in high concentrations.

Our main idea is to develop a supplementary probiotic that, used in a regular and preventive way, can reduce the amount of polyamines that our body absorbs, so as to maintain their concentrations within a healthy level. This probiotic will consist on a mix of different modified bacteria that will simply process the exceeding part of polyamines from the digestion and eliminate them using a set of natural enzymes also found in our bodies. This probiotic will be consumed as an oral capsule, and the bacteria composing it will exclusively be extracted from the intestinal human microflora, which are also found in many products nowadays, such as cheese, yogurt, milk, etc.

Additionally, we have planned to develop a cancer risk detector by engineering a bacterial cell. The principle behind this idea is that an acetylated version of polyamines are exported to the blood and later to urine. This molecules have been targeted in previous studies with a high success in both sensibility and specificity of cancer risk detection. The problem of those studies is that the methodology is costly (it is expensive and takes weeks), and it is very far from being implemented in hospitals. For this reason, we are planning to develop a much easier system, that can test the risk of having a growing tumour in less than four hours. This system will consist in a set of modified bacteria, freezed dried in a strip, that will produce a reporter protein, a specific color, in the presence of the acetylated polyamines in urine...

T--UPF-CRG Barcelona--icono colon.png T--UPF-CRG Barcelona--icono polyas.png T--UPF-CRG Barcelona--icono tirita.png T--UPF-CRG Barcelona--icono app.png

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