What is iGEM?
The International Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) is the flagship student competition of the global synthetic biology community. First held at MIT in 2004, the competition brings together biology students from around the world every year in a global battle for the best synthetic biology ideas in Boston, USA. Student teams register in March and work together to brainstorm and select a synthetic biology idea that they can work on over the summer. The best iGEM teams consist of members from diverse fields including Biotechnology, Bioinformatics, Computer Science, Mathematics, Engineering, Statistics etc., all of whom work together to build synthetic biology solutions around different local and global problems. They design and invent new BioBrick devices (standardized DNA that can be snapped together like Lego) to build biological systems (genetically engineered cells) that perform useful functions. The team then prepares posters and prototypes to present at the Giant Jamboree in Boston, USA in October/November.