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The IGEM2013 women team among the finalists
18.10.13 - Our team of ten future engineers in Life Sciences or Bioengineering made it: they will represent the EPFL at the IGEM international competition, held at the prestigious MIT, in Boston
Thanks to their skills and motivation and to the coaching of Bart Deplanke, Sebastian Maerkl and Barbara Grisoni, the EPFL Team "Taxi.Coli Smart Drive Delivery" will be among the 23 European finalists, on 60.
The projet aims at creating a highly adaptable smart drug delivery system, which could be used for several applications and alternatives in disease treatment. The design makes it so flexible that it could even be possible to adapt it to the patient’s individual needs. By being highly adaptive, the proposed system would also reduce the cost of targeted drug delivery because, instead of creating a new system for each drug and each patient, one could simply use the basic part that we made, modify them slightly and assemble them.
Using the principles of synthetic biology, an E.coli Bacterium will be engineered that expresses streptavidin on its surface and contains a pH sensing promoter controlling the expression of gelatinases. Those bacteria would be able to bind biotinylated nanoparticles.
The nanoparticles are made out of gelatin. This kind of nanoparticles has been shown to be able to transport proteins, organic molecules or DNA. They were biotinylated using activated biotin. To assemble the nanoparticles with the bacteria, they only need to be in the same tube, because the interaction between biotin and streptavidin is very strong and spontaneous.
The crucial point of the project is that E.coli was genetically engineered to sense a specific trigger in the environment. Sensing such a trigger induces the production of enzymes that degrade the nanoparticles, GelE gelatinase from Enterococcus Fecalis and Matrix Metalloprotease MMP2 from H. Sapiens. So the drug will be released exactly where it is needed to treat the patient.Return to previous page
1996 - 1998 Phillippe Moris
1998 - 2005 MBA Universite de Harvard
2005 - 2009 ROTH Cl Partners
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