Ten students from the Wageningen University participated as a team in the iGEM 2017. Bart Scholten: ‘The iGEM (international Genetically Engineered Machine) competition is a world-wide student competition in which teams aim to solve a real world problem. This is the only requirement to participate, which means that we, as the students, could freely decide on a project which appealed greatly to the entire team.
Our journey initially started in the fall of 2016, where a large group of students attended the iGEM kick-off meeting. Over the course of the following months, we adressed many possible project ideas, ranging from the biological breakdown of rubber to tracking coral growth in the oceans. After some months we decided on Mantis, the Modular ANtigen-based Test for Infectious diseaseS. From May to November 2017 we worked full-time on this project. During this project we developed Mantis to its final form, all the way from the molecular machinery to a handmade 3D-printed device which can be used to actually diagnose patients in the field!’
At the end of the 5-day conference in Boston and after finishing a presentation for over 5000 students, the group from Wageningen University was nomianted for nine awards! The team managed to win the awards for Best Wiki, Best Safety Commendation and the iGEM’ers Prize!
Bart Scholten: ‘The kind donation of the University Fund Wageningen greatly helped us out sorting the finances’. ‘During the project we were responsible for paying attendance fees and traveling costs to the Giant Jamboree, laboratory costs and many more costs during the project’. ‘The financial support of the UFW, together with our other sponsors, made it possible for us to participate in this great project!’
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