What is Synthetic Biology?
Biology has historically been an observational science. However, the field of synthetic biology challenges this notion. Synthetic biology deals with designing biological parts and systems that are not naturally existing in order to solve problems that require more than just analysis and observation, but the creation of new models. It involves altering DNA sequences to design organisms that can perform novel functions, such as produce biofuels or synthesize drug precursors. Synthetic biology is the engineering of biology.
What is WSBR?
The Western Synthetic Biology Research Program is an organization of undergraduate students performing scientific research in major issues such as climate change, energy production, and personalized medicine. UWO iGEM is the team division of WSBR that participates in the International Genetically Engineered Machine competition. In addition to the core research program, WSBR also runs the bimonthly journal club SynBio Talks. Founded in 2016, WSBR has received tremendous support from faculty, industry, and students alike.
What is iGEM?
The International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) organization is a worldwide synthetic biology competition aimed mostly towards undergraduates. It began in 2003 as a course at MIT and has since expanded to 280 teams from leading research universities around the globe. Much of the engineering done by iGEM teams is based off the Registry of Standard Biological Parts . Using these, as well as parts of their own design, teams work over the summer to build biological systems that have far-reaching applications. Learn More →