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Synthetic Biology in Cambridge

 
Survey results are in for the demand for open-source hardware in research + education

Survey results are in for the demand for open-source hardware in research + education

25 April 2019

A few months ago, André Maia Chagas (Mozilla Fellow, TReND in Africa collaborator, and co-founder of Prometheus Science) conducted a survey to better understand what tools and resources researchers, educators, DIYers and curious individuals were lacking in order to conduct scientific experiments. In the second stage of the project, André and his team hope to engage communities and collectively build the tools to address these needs through a call for participation in a building event.

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Biomaker Training in Ghana: Introducing biologists and non-biologists to building science hardware

Biomaker Training in Ghana: Introducing biologists and non-biologists to building science hardware

23 April 2019

The Biomaker Africa programme is the first of its kind in Africa, aimed at training biologists and non-biologists to learn, design, prototype and share science hardware critical to building tools for laboratory use and environmental sensing. Additionally, the programme is geared towards enabling teams to find solutions to problems in agriculture, health, research and education particular to Africa. Biomaker Africa includes 4 countries: Ghana (Kumasi Hive), South Africa (University of Pretoria), Egypt (Mansoura University) and Ethiopia (Bahir Dar University). Harry Akligoh of Kumasi Hive details the exciting two-month intensive Biomaker training program that was implemented this spring.

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The Art & Science Soirée aimed to provide the inspiration, tools and spaces to work on interdisciplinary, open science projects

The Art & Science Soirée aimed to provide the inspiration, tools and spaces to work on interdisciplinary, open science projects

21 March 2019

As part of this year's Cambridge Science Festival, The Art & Science Soirée brought together scientists, engineers, artists and designers for an exciting evening of speed meets, snap-talks, hands-on demos, and unexpected encounters. From the beginning, it was important to the organisers that the evening not only produce sparks of inspiration, but provide the tools and resources to be able to move forward and produce something tangible with them.

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New paper out from Jewett lab on cell-free biosynthesis of limonene using enzyme-enriched Escherichia coli lysates

New paper out from Jewett lab on cell-free biosynthesis of limonene using enzyme-enriched Escherichia coli lysates

6 March 2019

Isoprenoids are an attractive class of metabolites for enzymatic synthesis from renewable substrates. However, metabolic engineering of microorganisms for monoterpenoid production is limited by the need for time-consuming, and often non-intuitive, combinatorial tuning of biosynthetic pathway variations to meet design criteria. Towards alleviating this limitation, the goal of this work was to build a modular, cell-free platform for construction and testing of monoterpenoid pathways, using the fragrance and flavoring molecule limonene as a model.

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Our Biomaker Challenge: Designing for Code-Free LCD Menu Generation

Our Biomaker Challenge: Designing for Code-Free LCD Menu Generation

1 March 2019

I’m a hardware designer and embedded systems programmer based outside Boston, MA, and I was an early independent contributor to the XOD project. I come from a background and education more rooted in art and design, sound engineering, and analog circuit design for audio equipment, than software development/code hacking and seem to be more of a “visual thinker,” so the idea of being able to rapidly prototype microprocessor systems with a metaphor like wiring modules together really appealed to me. And I was glad to see that Cambridge chose to use this environment as an educational aid. I think it will be a unique tool for science and engineering students, even with limited programming ability, to build fairly complex microprocessor-based hardware vital to the success of projects in their own fields, and simultaneously teach how to design and think like an engineer.

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2019 OpenPlant Forum in Cambridge will focus on smart design for the future bioeconomy

2019 OpenPlant Forum in Cambridge will focus on smart design for the future bioeconomy

28 February 2019

The annual synthetic biology forum will be held at Murray Edwards College this summer during the last week of July. A preliminary programme has been announced and free registration is now open!

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Biomaker Initiative Awarded £80k for Capacity Building in Africa!

Biomaker Initiative Awarded £80k for Capacity Building in Africa!

26 February 2019

The Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) supports interdisciplinary activities that address problems of developing countries and aims to develop sustainable and innovative solutions. The SynBio SRI is excited to announce that, together with Dr Lara Allen and Dr Jenny Molloy, we have been successful in a bid to implement the Biomaker programme with key partners in African institutions to build local expertise and capacity through knowledge sharing and exchange of open-source materials.

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The SynBio SRI is teaming up with SciArt Cambridge, Biomakespace and event producer Sophie Weeks for an exciting event for Cambridge Science Festival 2019

The SynBio SRI is teaming up with SciArt Cambridge, Biomakespace and event producer Sophie Weeks for an exciting event for Cambridge Science Festival 2019

29 January 2019

We're shaking things up this year and co-hosting The Art & Science Soirée on the evening of Monday 18 March at The Engineer's House by the river. We invite creative thinkers and tinkerers to connect with scientists, engineers, artists and designers engaged in DIY science. But why science and art you ask?

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Two publications describe focus stacking setup developed through OpenPlant Fund and Biomaker Challenge

Two publications describe focus stacking setup developed through OpenPlant Fund and Biomaker Challenge

29 January 2019

Dr Jennifer Deegan has built a Focus Stacking system that enables her to take close up, high-definition photos of very small gametophyte ferns. The project was further developed through an OpenPlant Fund and the Biomaker Challenge, during which she collaborated with an interdisciplinary team to photograph new samples and build up teaching tools to enable others to replicate the system.

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Speed Breeding Made Accessible and Democratic

Speed Breeding Made Accessible and Democratic

15 January 2019

Scientists at the John Innes Centre, Earlham Institute, and Quadram Institute in Norwich and the University of Queensland have improved the technique, known as speed breeding, adapting it to work in vast glasshouses and in scaled-down desktop growth chambers.

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