Liberal Arts and Science Academy High School

Thousands of people are injured from unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning each year. CO causes anoxia when inhaled, a condition characterized by severe deprivation of oxygen to the brain and blood; further cognitive impairments may develop as well. As this toxic, odorless gas can be produced by fuel-emitting vehicles or kitchen appliances, CO detectors are essential in every domestic and industrial setting.

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a toxic colorless and odorless gas that results in thousands of fatalities a year, yet most detectors are based upon sight and sound that exclude the blind and the deaf. Furthermore, current sensors rely upon upon the presence of electricity and power, and are thus unable to act in scenarios of natural disasters when CO leaks are most likely.

This project introduces a CO-sensing mechanism into E.coli using a CooA transcription activator and corresponding pCooF promoter to regulate the expression of a methyl salicylate pathway (pchBA and BSMT genes). The pathway converts the endogenous molecule chorismate into salicylic acid and then methyl salicylate, producing a wintergreen smell in the presence of CO. This CO sensor has implications for not only the disabled, but also commercial use in cases of natural disaster due to its cost efficiency and transportability.

iGEM 2015 Results

Gold medalist

Nominated for Best Wiki, High School

Nominated for Best Poster, High School

Nominated for Best Presentation, High School

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