Although we did not select ELM stents as this year's iGEM project, we participated in the 12th Creative Challenger Program(CCP) hosted by our university using this topic.
We worked on our concept of the 3D system and came up with a system which selectively activates cells to produce PLA from lactic acid which is the monomer of it. We want our activated cells to be distributed in a mesh-like pattern so that those cells may deposit lactic acid and create PLA in a mesh-like form. The mechanism involves two types of sender cells: one that releases 'waves' of ques which creates concentration distribution of multiple concentric shells and another that forms a cylindrical distribution. The region where the two ques overlap forms a distinctive meshlike pattern. Only the cells that recieve ques from both of the sender cells are activated and exrpesses lactic acid synthethase on its surface, thereby allowing the deposition of lactic acid in a mesh-like pattern.
This programs extends beyond this year so we are still working on the details. The final event of this program is to be held on January 29th 2021. We are planning to incorporate some of the well-documented parts registered in the iGEM registry in our design. We anticiapate finding a part that suits our purpose such as pattern generating parts or surface expression enabling parts. Though it was an offshoot project, it was meaningful experience to be inspired the possibilities of synthetic biology and to utilize the parts registry.