University of California Berkeley 2006


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Berk2006-junkpage Berkeley200BestPartPic.jpg


1st place for Best Part

3rd place for Best Measurement and Part Characterization

Special Thanks:

Microsoft Logo.jpg

The Berkeley iGEM team very gratefully acknowledges the generous support of Microsoft, which helped make our team members' participation possible.

Addressable Conjugation in Bacterial Networks

Networks of interacting cells provide the basis for neural learning. We have developed the process of addressable conjugation for communication within a network of E. coli bacteria. Here, bacteria send messages to one another via conjugation of plasmid DNAs, but the message is only meaningful to cells with a matching address sequence. In this way, the Watson Crick base-pairing of addressing sequences replaces the spatial connectivity present in neural systems. To construct this system, we have adapted natural conjugation systems as the communication device. Information contained in the transferred plasmids is only accessable by "unlocking" the message using RNA based 'keys'. The resulting addressable conjugation process is being adapted to construct a network of NAND logic gates in bacterial cultures. Ultimately, this will allow us to develop networks of bacteria capable of trained learning.

Our Team

High School

Matt Fleming
Kaitlin A. Davis


Bryan Hernandez
Jennifer Lu
Samantha Liang
Daniel Kluesing
Will Bosworth


John E. Dueber
J. Christopher Anderson

Faculty Advisors

Adam P. Arkin
Jay D. Keasling

The specific goals of our project were to:

Berkeley2006IgemRocks.jpgConstruct high-performance riboregulator pairs
Berkeley2006IgemRocks.jpgHarness the process of bacterial conjugation
Berkeley2006IgemRocks.jpgDemonstrate transmission of a coded message
Berkeley2006IgemStillRocks.jpgConstruct a bacterial learning network

To learn more about our system, follow the series of descriptions below:

High-performance Riboregulators

Harnessing Bacterial Conjugation

Controlling Message Sending and Receiving

New Biobrick-Compatible Plasmids

Logic Computation in Bacterial Networks

Trained Learning in a Bacterial Network

To view our notebooks and protocols, visit our working website at Berkeley 2006 iGEM
See our parts list at Registry 2006 Berkeley iGEM
Download our Powerpoint presentation

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