Team:British Columbia/Project2


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With an estimated 1031 phage particles on earth, bacteria is constantly under the threat of infection.

This can greatly affect the numerous industrial processes performed with bacteria, such as yogurt production. Problems arising from phage contamination can be very costly.

We sought to solve this problem by engineering bacterial resistance to phage infection. We reconfigured the bacterial immune system CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) to provide resistance to common phages.

Sticking with the yogurt theme, we engineered several biosynthetic pathways in bacteria to produce different ‘flavours’ or compounds of interest. These could potentially be used in yogurt production so that the bacteria involved could ‘flavour’ the yogurt as it is made.

Through our work with CRISPR, we came to believe that that it could be used to modulate the different the flux of the biosynthetic pathways and provide an avenue for population control within a complex mixed culture. The population dynamics involved in this process were mathematically modeled.

Click the buttons below to read more on each of the different aspects of our project or learn about the parts we standardized and submitted to the registry this year!