In November 1973, Stanley Cohen and Herb Boyer marked the start of biotechnology by describing a way to construct new functional bacterial plasmids in vitro, which we now call traditional cloning. In the forty years that followed, research efforts have led to a variation in available cloning methods. Currently available methods include methods independent of ligation, independent of restriction enzymes and even independent of the use of a chassis.
iGEM teams in particular have experimented and pioneered many of these cloning methods: Cambridge teams have pioneered Gibson Assembly, Freiburg introduced iGEM to the Golden Gate Standard and Lethbridge familiarized iGEM with Ligation Independent Cloning. Novel cloning methods have thus started to play a major role within the iGEM competition, and we think they will become even more important in the future. But as a new iGEM team, still unfamiliar with DNA Recombinant Technology, let alone newer cloning methods, we couldn’t see forest for the trees. To enable future iGEM teams to make a more informed choice on assembly standards and methods, we compiled this year's iGEM teams experiences in a cloning guide.
To be able to compile such a guide we relied heavily on collaborations with other teams. They are the ones who can guide you through the cloning methods, having hands-on experience with many of these methods. Therefore, we have reached out to many other iGEM teams. An overview of the teams who have participated in our cloning guide is presented at the bottom of this page.
Feel free to browse through the cloning guide.