Welcome to the Imperial 2008 iGEM project page. It's Wednesday, September 3 and a great day to read about an awesome iGEM project!
For the 2008 iGEM competition, the Imperial College Team aims to develop a genetically-engineered Biofabricator, using the Gram-positive bacterium Bacillus subtilis as our chassis. Our Biofabricator aims to produce self-assembling biomaterials in specified 3D shapes, using light as the trigger.
This is achieved in three stages. First by utilising an endogenous light-sensing mechanism, the bacteria is captured in the desired location using 3D holography. Next bacterial locomotion is suspended in the region of interest using a recently-discovered clutch mechanism. This involves disengaging the flagellum from the motor protein. Finally, when our bacteria are stationary in the correct location, the biomaterial production is triggered. These biomaterials can self-assemble to form a 3D bio-scaffold. Applications of our Biofabricator range from regenerative tissue engineering to Bio-Couture.