One of the most important activities of professional
researchers is to collaborate with other teams.
Collaborations provide benefits for both teams
involved: they can test their designs, know opinions,
obtain feedback, read about other projects, have other
points of view…
In Valencia UPV team we believe that collaborations with colleagues participating in iGEM or with companies of the sector enrich our experience and allow us to broaden our minds, at the same time that we help other teams. That is the reason why we have been collaborating with other iGEM teams at any chance we had.
Better to give than to receive
State team needed a control for they
transformations. As we both work with Phytobricks and
plants, we sent them a device with 35s:GFP:Tnos, for
GFP expression in plants. We also advised them on the
use of Goldenbraid standard to work with
Paris Bettencourt team is working to remove stains with microbes. One of their objectives is to remove wine stains. As Spain is a country known by their wines, they asked us for samples of grapes, leaves and soil of vineyards, so they could search for microorganisms that could degrade wine stains. One of our team members lives in the region Utiel-Requena, a wine with Certification of Origin. The samples we sent them were from this region.
We made a program that can be used to convert from plain text to HTML. At the beginning, the program was made for our own use (including classes particular for our wiki). However, speaking with other teams, we realized that it could be useful for others and we adapted it so it could be used for any wiki working with Bootstrap classes. You can try the program in this link: TXT to HTML
Spain iGEM Meetup: our team organized a iGEM Meetup
weekend with both teams promoted communication and
exchange of project ideas. The presentation sessions
served as practice presenting our project to different
people. And more importantly, we made friends!
Afterwards the Meetup, we have kept contact with
Barcelona and Sevilla teams, helping each other in any
doubt related to iGEM, Jamboree and Wiki.
XMU-China: one year more, our team took part of the XMU-China newsletter In this newsletter teams get to know each other and can start a discussion of interesting topics on Synthetic Biology. It also allows teams to contact and start enriching collaborations.
Tianjin: they led a survey union with questions of each team (Team Pasteur, Team Pittsburgh, Team Virginia and Team NTU), so we could know opinions about our projects and synbio in general in different places in the world, having this way a more representative sector of population.
Aachen: in cooperation with iGEM teams in Mexico, Taiwan and Israel, led by Aachen, we performed a survey of general questions about genetic engineering. Like in the interlab study, the aim was to generate a higher amount of data from different countries and regions. This helped Aachen team in their human practices studies.
EPFL: this team created the site igem.today, were they published and wrote about interviews to other teams. Our team had a Skype interview with Laussane team, which was very well conducting and was enriching for both of us. We were proud to be featured on their page! Read here our interview.
Warwick: modeling collaborations are usually advantageous for both teams. Warwick is also working with CRISPR/Cas9 system. They sent us their Matlab program to simulate different proteins in the same environment. We tried it to check how it simulated the Cas9 and the gRNA in the same environment, and compare it to our own simulations. Our team gave them our scoring system for gRNAs, so they could use it to choose the optimal gRNA for their protein regulation.
Via Facebook, Twitter or email, many surveys have reached our team. These are the teams we helped by distributing and answering their questions:
- Evry: knowledge of plastic contamination and opinion about the use of PLA produced by bacteria as an alternative.
- Goettingen: what we know about vitamin B12 and what is the general understanding of biotechnology and the chances seen in it.
- Groningen: how sensitive information is saved, if people trust in those methods of information storing and how they would value the use of bacteria to store their information.
- Hannover: survey about how useful would be for researchers their project, TALebots, and why it would be useful or not compared to other techniques of gene editing.
- LMU-TUM_Munich: survey about enabling factors involved in crating biotech companies from iGEM teams, taking in account the results of the team during the last Jamboree and what they did after that.
- Paris Saclay: test "Responsible Research and Innovation" of our team. It aims to give a feed-back on the projects, in order to know how the RRI principles have been respected. We had a beautiful badge for answering!
- Purdue : knowledge about methods of wastewater treatment and acceptance of the usage of engineered bacteria for this purpose.
- TecCEM: antibiotic resistance and awareness about this problem.
- Tianjin: knowledge about contamination.
- TU Delft: research the influence of iGEM on among other things science, education and policy, using as starting point last year competition. Our team members that participated last year in iGEM filled this survey.
- UPO Sevilla: popular opinion about GMO and GMO acceptance.
- Vilnius-Lithuania: what makes successful an iGEM team, based on result of last Jamboree.
- Virginia: about awareness and use of biocontainment in iGEM projects. We also received a fantastic badge for answering.
- XMU-China: antibiotics, antibiotic resistance and bad usage of antibiotics.