I-GEM, International Genetically Engineered Machine,  building biological systems from standard, interchangeable parts and operating in living cells

Themes: High Tech, Social impact

Proof of principle

A TRL is a measure to indicate the matureness of a developing technology. When an innovative idea is discovered it is often not directly suitable for application. Usually such novel idea is subjected to further experimentation, testing and prototyping before it can be implemented. The image below shows how to read TRL’s to categorise the innovative ideas.

Click to enlarge


The goal of our project ELECTRACE, is to develop a microbial sensor, responding to a signal by emitting an electrical output. In contrast to conventional output, ELECTRACE supports accurate and low effort measurements. This will reach the gap between electronics and biology.


This microbial sensor is constructed by engineering the very basic and well known bacteria - Escherichia coli. For detection we will make use of native Escherichia coli promotors, which are activated in response to aforementioned explosive compounds.


Our device will be presented to a vast scientific community in Boston between 30 October - 3rd of November 2014.

Dr. Anne Meyer


Dr. Dennis Claessen

Ing. Esengul Yildrim

Team of 13 students