Team:UIUC Illinois/Demonstrate

UIUC_Illinois iGEM 2016


As a proof of concept, our team planned to use our promoter library to optimize the production of lycopene, which is the red carotene protein that gives tomatoes and other vegetables their distinctive color. Lycopene can be synthesized from its precursor molecule, phytoene, in e. coli through the use of a few well-characterized enzymes [1]. It was our intention to put these enzymes under the control of various promoters in our library and compare lycopene yields for each scenario. It was expected that the highest yields would be gained when enzymes occurring in the first steps of the pathway were placed under the control of an early-stage promoter, while late-exponential or stationary phase promoters drove enzymes catalyzing the final reactions. Unfortunately, difficulties experienced while cloning and characterizing our parts meant that we did not have enough time to complete this proof-of-concept in practice.