One of the biggest controversial issues of our project is the public perception and what our project poses to the environment and surrounding community. The limitations we face regarding this public risk will be solved through Local and National Outreach.
iGEM’s First Summer Lab Camp
UofT iGEM held our first summer lab camp for secondary school students from July 27th-31st 2015.
The purpose of this 4-day summer camp was to educate students about previous and current iGEM projects. The camp was designed to allow students to explore laboratory research methods and perform standard molecular biology laboratory experiments such as: DNA fingerprinting, PCR, Gel Electrophoresis, DNA transformation, RFP/GFP coloured Bacteria transformation, 3D Printing, and much more to further develop understanding of the scientific method. We collaborated with DIYBio, a non-profit organization which believes strongly in student learning and self-discovery. While educating young students, we are not only investing in growing iGEM as a team but also allowing students to explore what the world of synthetic biology has to offer.
Sandra Dworatzek, Senior Manager at SiREM Labs, a bioremediation lab in Guelph, Ontario gave us greater insight in the bioremediation industry. Their KB-1® and KB-1 Plus® bioaugmentation cultures aid in the remediation of chlorinated solvents and other unwanted compounds. Efficiency of their anaerobic reactors depends on various factors, common with the success of our aerobic bioreactor: controlling the environment’s pH, oxygen concentration, substrate concentration etc. Currently, SiREM Labs does not have a flux-balance analysis tool to help predict the amount of bacterial culture needed to help remediate the site. If a computational tool, such as our “ConsortiaFlux" were to be put into place, this could help expedite their planning process being that they would be able to see the potential degradation of waste for an x amount of their KB-1® culture.
Alberta Oil Stories Blog
In order to engage a broader community on the worldwide web, we created a blog of our experiences in Alberta learning about the Oil Sands Industry. More information about the blog can be found on the Alberta Oil Stories page. The blog can be accessed at: https://albertaoilstories.wordpress.com/