Sharing a laboratory with Shanghai SFLS SPBS and SZ-SHD
We shared the same lab with Team Shanghai_SFLS_SPBS and SZ-SHD. Through exchanging lab experiences and learning from each other's work, we have found our collaboration to not only be a great source of project-wise innovations, but also it has helped us established an mini scientific community that is invaluable
As students genuinely intrigued in synthetic biology, we not only hosted serious scholarly seminars to discuss possible improvements to our project plans, but also helped each other in the lab by sharing plates, culture medium, sterilized shaking tubes and even the same closet for our lab coats!
We also cooperated to determine schedules and rules for the lab. These rules reinforced our awareness to always keep the lab tidy and clean. We have made great friends in these 3 months working on our projects.
Fig. 1.2.1 Logos of the teams we collaborated with. (Left: JACOXH; Right: Team Shanghai_SFLS_SPBS.).
In order to discover the reason behind the failure of Toehold Switch System, we collaborated with Team Modu for discussion and further experiments. Members from both teams joined together to locate the potential problems for the malfunction and come up with resolutions. We borrowed the lactase plasmid from Team Modu.
In the first phase of our experiment, after our theoretical design of DNAzyme proved the method to be efficient, we are in need of an actual lab trial to test out its accuracy in detecting heavy metal ions. Thus, we attempted to find water solutions that contain heavy metals as our testing sample. However, we found:
1.It is hard to acquire water samples that will definitely contain heavy metals as the water bodies in Shanghai are all pretty well processed
2.If we made our own heavy metal solution, it might be too subjective to our interest and will not produce the best result.
Thus, we asked Team SZ-SHD to help us make a heavy metal solution and asked them to not reveal the specific density of heavy metals contained in the solution to us. Then, we used our own DNAzyme system to detect the existence of heavy metal ions.
Webinar with Shanghai_SFLS_SPBS and JACOXH_China
Fig. 1.2.2 Team JACOXH_China's project presentation
We organized a webinar with Team Shanghai_SFLS_SPBS and JACOXH_China on Oct 5. After greetings and self-introductions, we presented our projects and held brief Q&A sessions. Team Shanghai_SFLS_SPBS's project is about generating less harmful hair dye. Through their presentation, we recognized a) the disadvantages of current hair dyes; and b) an existing market demand for a new hair dye that is harmless. We believe their project is well-supported by both theories and experiments they conducted. Team JACOXH_China's project is about modifying earthworms to alleviate the harmful Hg in soil. We were very happy to learn that both of our projects target the issue of existing heavy metals. Their solution of modifying living organisms provided us with a new perspective to think of this issue.
Participate the 7th CCiC
Other than more in-depth collaborations with teams aforementioned, we also participated in the 7th CCiC (Conference of China iGEMer Community) -- "from Lab to Fab." This two day meetup included activity workshops, presentations, poster sessions, and general conversations between teams.According to feedback from other teams and judges who listened to our presentation, the method of DNAzyme seem to be an area in synthetic biology that is not yet that well-explored. To tackle this problem, both our lab and HP team worked to further raise the public's awareness of this method.
We are again very honored to be a part of this warm scientific community and here sincerely thank our partners and collaborators.