iGEM Team top team in Canada in 2011!

U of L iGEM team - top team in Canada in 2011, in top 8% at iGEM Competition in Boston

The U of L's International Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) team is the top team in Canada, and has made it to the top eight per cent of all teams competing at the International Genetically Engineered Machines competition in Boston, Massachusetts, which wrapped up Monday, Nov. 7.

The team presented their research about a petrochemical-eating bacteria their group has designed and how it could be used to help clean up water in tailings ponds – a byproduct of the bitumen refining process in which water that cannot be recycled is deposited into large ponds to settle.

Their research has attracted attention and funding from several organizations, including the Oil Sands Initiative.

The team was the only Canadian team to place in the top 16 teams among 66 final competitors from around the world.

Called the "Sweet 16" the Lethbridge team is in good company:

  • Bielefeld-Germany
  • Brown-Stanford
  • Harvard
  • Imperial College London
  • Johns Hopkins
  • Lethbridge
  • MIT
  • Paris Bettencourt
  • Peking R
  • SJTU-BioX-Shanghai
  • Tokyo Tech
  • UC Davis
  • Washington
  • Yale
  • ZJU-China

The group has already won an Alberta-wide competition (http://www.uleth.ca/research/news/u-l-igem-team-wins-agem-biotool-award) and were one of four top-level finalists at a recent "Americas" gathering in Indianapolis, IN, where they placed with Brown-Stanford, the University of Washington and Yale University in the final four.

The International Genetically Engineered Machine Competition (iGEM) is the premiere Synthetic Biology competition and currently the largest Synthetic Biology conference in the world.

Working at their own schools over the summer, participants use standard biological parts to design, build, and operate biological systems in living cells.

During the first weekend of November, they share their work at the iGEM Competition Jamboree at MIT and in competition for a variety of awards for excellence. They add their new parts to the Registry of Standard Biological Parts for the students in the next year's competition.

To check out the U of L's results, please follow this link: http://2011.igem.org/Jamborees

To learn more about the U of L iGEM team, please visit these websites:




2010 Results Information


U of L Communications and Public Relations Contact:
Bob Cooney, Communications and PR Officer (403) 382-7173