Andrea Jorawsky gets sucked into Professor Ledbelly's wastebasket during a showing of Studio Theatre's "Goodnight Desdemona (Good Morning Juliet)."
A student group from the faculties of medicine & dentistry, science and engineering were the only Canadian team and one of just three North American squads to take home an award from the International Genetically Engineered Machine competition at MIT in Boston on Nov. 2.
“They kicked butt,” said the team’s supervisor Mike Ellison, a professor of biochemistry in the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry.
iGEM, as it’s known, is the premiere undergraduate synthetic biology competition. Some of the top universities in the world, like Cambridge, Stanford and Harvard, send 112 teams to compete.
“The competition is very steep,” said Ellison. “It’s also gotten far more professional in terms of the scientific quality over past years. It’s a tough grind.”
The U of A squad developed a rapid automated method for gene assembly that is 100 times faster than state-of-the-art equipment used by scientists now. While Cambridge won the grand prize, the
U of A group won one of six track prizes, called Best Foundation Advance.
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