iGEM MTY 2015


About the Team

We are a committed group of students who love to do science. We are comprised of students from different majors: biotechnology engineering, design, and computer technology. We also are from across the country, reunited in the same school. We interact and enrich each other’s ideas as we contrast our points of views.

We all started as a group of strangers that during the course of the project ended up as best friends, trusting and knowing each other. We first discovered in each other the interest in synthetic biology, and ended up as more than colleagues. The team was what it was thanks to our various abilities and different personalities. And that is what created this year’s project, the introduction of an insect cell platform to the competition.


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Dr. Manuel Zertuche: Without his support, nothing would’ve been possible. He always believed in the project’s potential and helped us overcome the obstacles.

Dr. Rito Palomares: His interest in the project and his help were of great importance for the development and completion of it.

Dra. Laura Palomares: National Researcher Level III and expert in complex protein production, she kindly gave us the insect cells that started everything.

Dr. Richard Willson: Mainly focused on the structural determinants of molecular recognition in complexes of proteins with recognition agents, he offered kindly advice and donated Cas9 Protein.

M.Sc. Ruth Pastor: Expert in the production of recombinant proteins in insect cells and in vaccine production using baculovirus-insect cell technology, she gave us helpful advice and helped us by sending the Sf9 cells and E. coli DH10bac.

M.Sc. Irasema Romo López: Gave us invaluable advice and material for our insect cells.

M.Sc. BongMin Bae: Provided material when needed and also gave us awesome advice.

Dra. Adriana Pacheco: Was kind enough to donate material that was of great use to us.

Enrique Paz: For his kind guidance in the use of Sf9 cells.

Felipe López Pacheco: Gave us much needed material.

Dr. Mary Rocha: Gave us great advice and donated much needed material.

B. S. Emilio Polanco: Took the time to teach us how to quantify protein and we’re very grateful for it.

B. S. Luis Mario Leal Garza: One of our past team leaders. Gave us advice and was an important support system.

M.Sc. Israel Ramírez Alanís: Donated material and offered support.

B.S. Edgar Acuña: Gave us positive control for our SDS-pages.

Eloisa María Fernández Rangel and Donato Cárdenas: For taking time from their busy schedule, provided legal advice for our customs research.

Juan De Dios Bonilla Boiso, Christian Alejandro Fregoso Duran and Jessica Rocha Velázquez: From Customs Regulation and Normativity, for listening to our problems with customs and working with us to find a solution.

Bootstrap: For their awesome responsive framework.

Carlos Alberto Silva Ruiz (Charlie): Always was nice enough to lend us material from the lab.

FEMSA Biotechnology Center Staff and Biotechnology Department: For giving us access to the lab, patience and advice in general.

Lic. Luis Omar Peña Ortega, Director of the Division of Biotechnology and Food Industries: We are grateful for his attention to our problems and for always providing quick solutions.

Dr. Gilberto Armienta, Director of the School of Biotechnology and Health Sciences: For giving us his support throughout our project.

i4 Chair:

For this project we were positioned under the scheme of this chair to administrate our funding and role in the school. The students’ chair (i4) is an opportunity offered by the Tecnológico de Monterrey in Monterrey, through its School of Biotechnology and Health Sciences, so students interested in biotechnology and food industries can develop projects in the area. The concept is based on four core values:

  1. Imagine.
  2. Investigate.
  3. Innovate.
  4. Incubate.

Student teams, like ours, that want to apply your project may reach hatching their own business, running an article in scientific research, process your patent application and compete internationally. We are especially grateful with them for their generous sponsorship that allowed us to get the genes and some material for the project.

School of Biotechnology and Health Sciences (ESCB: Escuela de Biotecnología y Ciencias de la Salud): The School of Biotechnology and Health Sciences integrates talent, infrastructure and curriculum designed to provide the best educational, research and knowledge transfers in Mexico and Latin America. Our school combines science and technology to create value and quality of life in society, and sustainable processes are performed with the highest degree of social responsibility. Thus, our motto "Integrating Science, Technology and Business" describes the vision of outcomes generated in every academic program.

FEMSA Biotechnology Center: The FEMSA Biotechnology Center in the Tecnológico de Monterrey integrates researchers from several academic departments to create interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary groups. Also, it's dedicated to the generation of research, knowledge transfer and business design models in food and biotechnology areas. It emerged 15 years ago as a response to the growing trend in scientific and technological innovation in the country and the whole world. Through time, the Biotechnology Center has developed lines of biotechnology research directed toward the innovation of processes, products, and services.

Tecnológico de Monterrey: Our institution, "Tecnológico de Monterrey", located in Monterrey, Nuevo León, was founded in 1943 by Eugenio Garza Sada and a group of businessmen who formed a civil-and-nonprofit partnership, named "Higher Education and Research, A.C."

Based in Monterrey, Mexico, the Institute has 31 campuses in 25 cities throughout the countryland, and is known as the first university ever connected to the Internet in Latin America, having one of the top graduate business schools in the region and being one of the leaders in patent applications among Mexican universities.

Today, the Tecnológico de Monterrey is a multicampus system with five common core values: innovation, global vision, team work, humanistic outlook and integrity.

Advisors and Instructors


Camilo Chávez: He is a graduate in Biotechnology Engineering. Three times iGEMer, Camilo’s experience was helpful to help us sort out problems in and out of the lab. He was always there willing to give us some advice about any kind of issues. Also, he helped us contact some of the other Mexican iGEM teams to generate a better human practice.
César Ortiz: César is MSc specialized in Biotechnology currently working at the Biotechnology Center at the Molecular Biology Division. He is a relaxed person who enjoys helping every possible time and way. He has a very critical and empathetic opinion to improve the work of the others while maintaining harmony. He kindly provided us with lots of helpful advice (and material).
Jesús Hernández (Chucho): Ex-iGEMer, and graduate from B.S. in Biotechnology Engineering. He is part of the Molecular Biology Laboratory in the FEMSA Biotechnology Center. From the very beginning, he was always there to help and give us some great advice.


Guy Cardineau: Dr. Cardineau began his career in the field of Agricultural Biotechnology in 1983 as a scientist at a small start-up company, Sungene Technologies, where he also served a short time as Manager of Market Development. He has 28 issued US patents and 19 published applications and over 140 patent applications worldwide. These works include: broad enabling patents describing the earliest production of vaccines in transgenic plants, the synthesis of genes to improve their expression in a foreign host and the only plant that makes vaccines approved by a regulatory authority for commercial release. We thank him for his kind support to get the project going, as well as all his advice, and all the material that he kindly gave us.
José Manuel Aguilar: José Manuel Aguilar majored in Biology with a specialty in Molecular Biology and holds a PhD in Biotechnology. He was responsible for the production of a more efficient procedure for the detection of influenza H1N1 during its pandemia, and the development of a vaccine using bacteria instead of chicken eggs. We thank him for his guidance and support during the project development.


Cátedra de alumnos Logo

• Cátedra i4 & Tecnológico de Monterrey - School of Biotechnology and Health Sciences

o We are especially grateful with them for their genesdrous sponsorship and the trust they had in us. With their support, we became able to get the genes / constructs and most of the materials that were crucial for the development of the project.

o On the other hand, we want to thank the student chair (i4) for lending us the equipment and facilities that we required to reach our objectives.

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CTR Scientific

o CTR Scientific is a company that supplies high quality laboratory instruments, material and reagents. We would like to thank them for the economic support that they have provided us during this year.

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New England Biolabs (NEB)

o This company is the leader in the development and discovery of enzymes for genomic research. We would like to thank them for their sponsorship in restriction enzymes, kits for DNA Assembly, and other products that were important for the laboratory activities.

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Agilent Technologies

o Thank you to the leader in life sciences and diagnostics who provided us our Cloning Kit (SureVector®), which was an important item for the development of our project.

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o We are very thankful with them because they provided us the demo of GloMax® from Promega, which was helpful for the measurement of our Nanoluc luciferase.

GenScript Logo


o We would like to thank this company for the special price that offered us to synthetize genes that we needed for the development of our project.

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o We are grateful with this company because they provided us the free synthesis of gBlocks and Oligos that helped us for the assembly of our biobricks.



o We thank this company for giving us licenses and additional complements for its software, which allowed us to better develop our mathematical model.

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o We are very grateful with SnapGene for giving us licenses to use its software, which helped us to better design our parts for the project.