Carnegie Mellon University

Monday, November 10, 2014

2014 iGEM Team

CMU iGEM Team 2014 Receives Multiple Awards at the iGEM World Jamboree

The Carnegie Mellon iGEM2014 Team traveled to Boston to compete in the iGEM Giant Jamboree. There were 245 Undergraduate and Overgraduate Teams from around the world participating and CMU returned with a Gold Medal Achievement Award, an Interlab Study Award and the Best Poster Award, the most awards received by any Undergraduate Team from the United States. The project, titled “STREAM, Sensors That Report Endocrine Activating Molecules”, tackled the problem of detecting estrogenic compounds in water. Team members Ali Celentano (Business/Bio '15), Dominique MacCalla (MatSci/BME '16), Nicole Matamala (CivE/BME '17), Danielle Peters (Bio '15), Courtney Pozzi (Industrial Design/BME '17), Niteesh Sundaram (ECE '15) and Lena Wang (Bio/BME '15) are thankful for the support provided by a SURG-CW, a ProSEED-CW, Thermo Scientific, college and departmental funds that made this opportunity possible.

Additionally, the team project will be one of the short microbiology lectures that will come to life on November 14, 2014 at 8:00 p.m. at the Botany Lecture Hall, Phipps Conservatory. This event, "Encountering the Unseen: Artist-actualized Lectures on Contemporary Topics in Microbiology", is hosted by School of Art MFA candidates Isla Hansen (MFA '15) and Tucker Marder (MFA '16). It will be an evening of short lectures under the broad topic of microbiology. A small group of professors connected to schools in the Pittsburgh area, and a few local experts, will to speak for about 10 minutes each. Isla, Tucker and their collaborators will provide visual performances to accompany each lecturer’s talk — physical manifestations of their ideas and of natural phenomena. The goal of this work is to replace the standard projected PowerPoint or slide presentation with live theater and kinetic sculpture activated by artists and puppeteers in order to bring microorganisms to life on a much larger scale.

CMU iGEM Team 2015 Information Sessions and Applications

We are now accepting applications for the Carnegie Mellon iGEM2015 Team. The iGEM Team is a team of undergraduates interested in synthetic biology (see for more information). The team will conceive and complete a project and participate in the International Genetically Engineered Machines Competition at the World Jamboree in Boston from September 24-28, 2015. 

There will be Info sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday January 27 and 28, 2015 at the UC Dowd Room, 4:30 p.m. refreshments and 5:00 p.m. presentation.  Applications consist of the student’s resume and a one page description of why they are interested in iGEM and how they would contribute to the team followed by a short interview. The written items are to be sent to Dr. Cheryl Telmer,, by February 2, 2014.

This is a competition where every project is an invention! The interdisciplinary team will identify a problem and a need, design and build a prototype from standard biological parts (this is Synthetic Biology), and then share their project with the community.  The core values of effort, accomplishment, respect, cooperation and especially scientific integrity and truth are promoted and achievements are celebrated at the World Jamboree.

The project of interest is designed, planned and managed by the team members with advisors providing guidance.  In the lab, the parts are cloned, combined, tested, documented and submitted to the Registry. Models of the system or device are developed and validated with lab results. Human Practices are designed to communicate the synthetic biology project. Skills are developed for communication of projects using wikis, posters and oral presentations. This is a great opportunity to work with an interdisciplinary team and participate in the World Jamboree!