We wouldn’t have been able to complete our project without a great team and our mentors!

MIT iGEM 2020 would like to thank everyone who helped our team, whether it was big or small.

Team Responsibilities:

On our team, we shared the responsibilities of research, experimental design, human practices, and more throughout the summer! Though two of our teammates did not continue on the team in the fall, we would still like to thank past members Diani Jones and Dana Osei for their contributions during our design process this past summer.

Project Design and Support:

We would like to thank our mentors who supported us throughout the spring, summer, and fall. They provided integral guidance and resources we used to develop our project. In the spring, the mentors helped us conduct general research on synthetic biology and develop our project ideas. In the summer, the mentors helped us organize our project, understand mathematical modeling of gene expression, perfect our presentations, and keep the workflow exciting!

In the fall, our mentors provided feedback on our website, poster, and presentation.

Student Mentors:

We would like to thank our student mentors: Benjamin Alsup (1st year grad student at MIT), Malik George (3rd year undergrad student at MIT), Miles George (3rd year undergrad student at MIT), Kristina Stoyanova (2nd year undergrad student at CalTech), and Melody Wu (3rd year undergrad student at MIT). They provided us with guidance through the spring, summer, and fall with all aspects of our project.

Weiss Lab and MIT Synthetic Biology Center Mentors:

We would like to thank our mentors from the Weiss Lab:

Professor Ron Weiss, Ph.D.: This summer, Professor Weiss provided us with resources and feedback on the direction of the project.

Dr. Deepak Mishra, Sc.D.: Advised us through experimental design, project development, and generally helped us navigate being an iGEM team.

Other members in the Weiss Lab:

  • Sebastian Palacios - Advised us on mathematical modeling of protein expression
  • Dr. Noreen Wauford - Advised us on using the PERSIST system and genetic circuit design
  • Dr. Fabio Callendo - Advised us on engineering anti-inflammatory proteins and genetic circuit design

MIT Biological Engineering Communications Lab:

Throughout the summer and fall the MIT Biological Engineering Communications Lab helped us with presentation design, scientific writing, and MMM. We would like to thank Anna Le, Caleb Perez, Jelle van der Hilst, and Prerna Bhargava as well as our mentors for all their help!

Human Practices:

Dr. Kenneth Oye and Dr. Françoise Baylis:

When considering the ethical use of our proposed therapeutic, we spoke with Dr. Kenneth Oye and Dr. Françoise Baylis. We’d like to thank Dr. Oye and Dr. Baylis for their help in understanding the implications of our project on COVID-19 patients.

Prof. Birnbaum:

We spoke to Professor Birnbaum about the therapeutic potential of our project and about future directions if we were to be in the lab. He provided us recently-published literature about similar therapeutics (IL-1 and IL-1R blockers) in the clinic and helped guide our thoughts on what our therapeutic could look like. He also helped us think about maximizing the effect of our AND gate.

Design and Experimentation:

Rushina Shah:

In the beginning of our cytokine modeling, Dr. Shah advised us on representing cytokines mathematically and modeling such a complex network of interactions. We would like to thank Dr. Shah for her guidance!

Funding Help:

We would like to thank Deepak Mishra Ph.D., the Weiss Laboratory at MIT Department of Biological Engineering, the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, and the MIT Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Office for funding us.

Wiki Support:

Current iGEM team members: Erin Shin and Ethan Levy, have edited, designed, and coded the wiki. All of our team wrote the content for the pages of our wiki.

Sponsor logos

This page was written by Ethan Levy, Rachel Shen, and Erin Shin