Uppsala SynBioDay

Perhaps the most important human practice addition to this years project was our arranging of Uppsala SynBioDay. We wanted to create a single event where all interest groups could be gathered including students, academia, private and public sector. The day comprised of lectures, iGEM project presentations, a bioethics debate and exhibitions. The main theme of the day was synthetic biology and genetically modified food. The reason for this was to create another opportunity to address issues related to our project of genetically modified probiotics and food production. The day was a great success and attracted over 200 participants and will be turned into an annual event.

A line is forming for the opening of Uppsala SynBioDay

Lectures and presentations

The schedule for the day included lectures about basic synthetic biology, more advanced research in synthetic biology and about probiotics. The day also included two iGEM project presentations including our own and iGEM Linköping

Ph.D. student Erik Gullberg holding an introductory talk about synthetic biology

Bioethics debate

The day was concluded with a bioethics debate centred on the controversial theme of genetically modified food. The format included four main speakers consisting of three professors and a writer and journalist as well as a moderator. There was first a discussion between the main speakers followed by a long question and answer session where the audience participated

From left to right: Stefan Roos, assoc prof. Microbiology. Anthony Forster, prof. synthetic biology. Waldemar Ingdahl, science journalist and author. Mats G. Hansson prof. bioethics


To get additional opportunities to engage the participants of the day, several exhibitions were held outside the lecture hall. This comprised a lot of educational and engaging information about synthetic biology. Both Uppsala and Linköping also took this opportunity to present their project posters. We arranged a Bioart exhibition and a bioethics corner where people could discuss and suggest bioethical questions for the bioethics debate.

Overview of parts of the exhibition area

One of our booths during the day where we explained about this year’s project. In the background you can see a draft of the iGEM Uppsala project poster. In the front we have our concept product, yoghurt+ and the team mascot Moo Moo.
MABTECH is a world leader in development of ELISpot products and technology and T-cell measurements. They participated and partly sponsored Uppsala SynBioDay. Here their booth at Uppsala SynBioDay can be seen.


iGEM Uppsala have made some essential contributions to the registry by providing a range of chromoproteins that produce strikingly colourful cell colonies. While a lot of work in synthetic biology is quite abstract these chromoproteins provides an opportunity to visually present the technology to the public. We used our chromoproteins to “paint” several pictures that we presented to the participants. To find all the parts you need to create your own Bioart, please visit our chromoprotein page and check out the iGEM Uppsala chromoprotein collection.

A picture of our bioart collection, showing the public what you can do with synthetic biology.