Team:KU Leuven/Project/Modelling/Colony Level



Secret garden

Congratulations! You've found our secret garden! Follow the instructions below and win a great prize at the World jamboree!

  • A video shows that two of our team members are having great fun at our favourite company. Do you know the name of the second member that appears in the video?
  • For one of our models we had to do very extensive computations. To prevent our own computers from overheating and to keep the temperature in our iGEM room at a normal level, we used a supercomputer. Which centre maintains this supercomputer? (Dutch abbreviation)
  • We organised a symposium with a debate, some seminars and 2 iGEM project presentations. An iGEM team came all the way from the Netherlands to present their project. What is the name of their city?

Now put all of these in this URL:, (loose the brackets and put everything in lowercase) and follow the very last instruction to get your special jamboree prize!

tree ladybugcartoon

To obtain an optimal effect of the released pheromones on aphids and the ladybugs, we designed an oscillating transcription factor network. This oscillator has two important features:

  1. The BanAphids use the oscillator to regulate their production of EBF and MeS.
  2. The oscillator is used to communicate between cells, enforcing the oscillating rhythm onto the whole colony.

All BanAphids in the same colony, equipped with this oscillator, produce the same pheromone at the exact same time. This optimises the effect of the pheromones, resulting in a more efficient aphid protection!


In this part we describe the design of an oscillator that could be useful in biological networks. We created a system that creates synchronized oscillations without depending heavily on the components used. We explain several necessities to obtain a synchronized oscillator, and how we managed to incorporate those within our network.


For those who are not afraid of having a more mathematical view on our oscillator, we invite you to read our modelling article. Depending on the perspective this text is seen as 'very extensive' or 'very short and preliminary', but please decide for yourself.