Team:BGU Israel/Achivements


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Human Practice Achievements

We have established a campaign for students to volunteer in clinics and helped population at risk to acquire knowledge for healthy life style. Our main goal was to ensure continuity by put up a scholarship program.

Lab Achievements

four novel projects were proposed, offering treatments based on synthetic biology.

Human Practice Achievements

It was extremely important to us to lead high impact human practice (HP) activities in our area of research of metabolic syndrome. Our objectives were to identify and learn about the most relevant patients, and then to provide a comprehensive solution that might apply in the future.

  • Our Bedouin Campaign was a main part of our HP strategy, which was built on 3 steps:
  1. Learning about the Bedouin community; understanding why the Bedouin sector suffers more from diabetes compared to other sectors in Israel. In our research, we first focused on similar features of the Bedouins to other indigenous people around the world. Features like rapid urbanization process and shifting from traditional to modern life style. Secondly, we pointed out some features that are unique for the Bedouin culture and religion practices.
  2. Mapping Barriers - after understanding the complexity of the Bedouin society and culture, we looked deeper and mapped the factors which prevented the Bedouins from taking action, and sometimes even refuse to accept the insulin conventional treatment. We came out with one clear answer - lack of awareness, both for ways to prevent diabetes, and for its implications on their health.
  3. Taking action to save life- we organized 2 big events for the Bedouin community: The "Metabolic Ambassadors"- A Seminar on Diabetes for 40 medical Bedouin students and the "Healthy Cooking Workshop & Early Detection Glucose Tests for Bedouins Spouses" that hosted more than 25 Bedouin women. Both events set goal was to raise awareness and motivation for taking action and save life. We also believe that these events will set the ground for our Inner Doctor solution. When we presented our project, after providing knowledge about diabetes, people were much more open-minded to accept our approach.

All these activities were performed with the great help of Dr. Abu-Rabia, the first Bedouin MD doctor in the Negev, who helped us build and adjust our events within the community, according to their needs. We worked hard to involve additional partners in our process, like the Israeli Diabetes Association (IDA) and local clinics, to ensure the continuity of our accomplishments in the future.

  • Another major achievement was our success in establishing 8 scholarships for Bedouin students who will volunteer in diabetes regional clinics, and additional 1 scholarship for a Bedouin student who will participate in opening, for the first time, a branch of the Israeli Diabetes Association in the Bedouin sector. Dr. Abu-Rabia declared these news as "no less than a revolution".

  • We also organized an expert's panel for the general public, held during the Innovation 2014 Day of Ben-Gurion University and it's title: The Metabolic Syndrome - Could Synthetic Biology Provide a Breakthrough Solution? We were over-booked; the seminar attracted a diverse audience from the public and business sectors, and of course, doctors and students. All panel speakers came voluntarily and willingly in view of the importance of the subject.

  • We set numerous meetings, presenting the iGEM competition and our project; consulted and discussed our suggested treatment with a variety of stakeholders and opinion-makers: university leaders, public figures, doctors, CEOs and more. Among them were the Israeli Minister of Health; The Mayor of Be'er-Sheva; Ben-Gurion University President; Metabolic Syndrome experts; CEO of IDA and CEO of Trigger Foresight (Deloitte). Every meeting added a different piece to the puzzle - patient profiles, law and regulation, the business aspect and more– leading to a whole picture of Metabolic Syndrome and Treatment.

Lab Achievements

Realizing the complexity of the Metabolic Syndrome, we envisioned the need for multiple treatments. Thus, four novel projects were proposed, offering treatments based on synthetic biology.

Intelligent Medication:

  • The system’s parts were designed and synthesized.
  • All system parts were assembled into CT26 eGFP- transfactant mammalian cell line.
  • We developed a software that automatically designs scRNA constructs for specific mRNA dependent RNAi.
  • Our results indicate an early proof-of-concept for reduced eGFP expression in CT26 GFP expressing cells after treatment with scRNA.

Artificial Exercise:

  • The system’s parts were designed and synthesized
  • TMRM dye assay was established in order to perform a semi-quantitative analysis of mitochondria present in HepG2 cells (human hepatocytes cell line).

Aspiration Shift:

  • We produced a comprehensive mathematical model of the circuit, to predict treatment effects.


The following Biobricks were designed, characterized, and we are currently working to send them to the Registry:

  • Bba_K1458002 - UCP1 (Uncoupling protein 1)
  • Bba_K1458003 – Heat Shock Protein70 promoter (HSP70)
  • Bba_K1458004 - Human AdipoQ
  • Bba_K1458005 – Human DsbA-L (GSTK1)