Self-repair (work in progress)
Laboratory. 2017-2018
n number of participants

Concept Contributions Contact


Hack and build a thermocycler
Workshop led by Alessandro Volpato and Mindaugas Gapsevicius

Any research lab should include a thermocycler, an apparatus for 
amplifying segments of DNA via the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The 
workshop includes an introduction to PCR mechanism, an understanding of 
the apparatus, hacking and upgrading a DIY version of it. The technical 
and theoretical part of the workshop will be supplemented by a list of 
projects using a PCR method.

Monitoring Urine
Workshop led by Alessandro Volpato

Undersanding our health status is easy, thanks to well designed 
equipment, extensive public documentation and collaboration with 
medical staff. This workshop is about checking biomarkers in own urine, 
which are measurable indicators of a biological state.

Mindaugas Gapševičius, Gabrielius Jakutis, Miglė Kalvaitytė, Lina
Rukevičiūtė, Emilija Vasiliūnaitė

The interactive installation invites audience to consider questions in 
relation to modified living organisms. Three contexts are proposed: Gene 
editing, GMO, and Synthetic biology. In each context audience is invited 
to evaluate the proposed contexts: "agree," "do not agree," and 
"neutral." The evaluation is done by sticking the provided stickers on 
the wall. Further comments might be added on the provided stickers.

SynORI - a framework for multi-plasmid systems
Mindaugas Gapševičius, Gabrielius Jakutis, Miglė Kalvaitytė, Lina
Rukevičiūtė, Emilija Vasiliūnaitė

The series of drawings introduce the Vilnius-Lithuania iGEM 2017 team's 
process of developing a SynORI - synthetic origin of replication. Under 
the same name the team has created a framework which, for the first time 
in science history, enables the alteration of plasmid copy number and 
standardized regulation of multi-plasmid systems. SynORI incorporates a 
subsystem for reducing the amount of antibiotics needed to maintain 
multiple plasmids in one cell, and will enable the creation of more 
complex metabolic pathways, smart assembly of protein complexes and a 
more precise information processing in synthetic biology.

The lab
Mindaugas Gapševičius, Gailė Griciūtė, Gabrielius Jakutis, Miglė
Kalvaitytė, Emilija Vasiliūnaitė

Visitors personally experience the process of scientific experiment and 
daily life in the laboratory by interacting with auditory exhibits. 
Laboratory surroundings are full of motion and… music. Indeed, what 
scientists hear daily is a composition of high pitched tones of the 
smallest equipment and low basses of large machines all of what merges 
into exceptional lab-tunes. These tunes will allow to create new 
associations with the scientist and his/her every day routine.

How I prepare myself to be cloned
Mindaugas Gapševičius

The toolkit dives into the very nature of the organism, which, 
throughout its life cycle, demonstrates the ability to self-replicate. 
Referring to mythological hybrids like Pegasus, centaurs, mermaids, or 
minotaurs, the presented within the toolkit workshops explain the basics 
of synthetic biology and transgenic organisms. The toolkit includes 
tools for the analysis of DNA with the provided DIY electrophoresis 
chamber and the multiplication of DNA with the provided polymerase chain 
reaction (PCR) machine.

Lichen biohacking: revealing the secrets of the forgotten part of the 
forgotten kingdom
Workshop led by Technarium team: Eglė Marija Ramanauskaitė and Simona 
Bekeraitė aka Opit

Lichens are great symbiotic organisms, able to survive the most hostile 
conditions and forming the basis of the ecosystems in which other 
organisms are unable to grow. Lichens grow very slowly; some of their 
species are known as one of the oldest organisms on Earth. 
Unfortunately, lichens are yet largely understudied by scientists and 
misunderstood by the public. Molecular features of lichens are of 
particular importance due to their specific growing conditions and the 
variety of species - what mechanisms and materials influence lichen 
"longevity"? Can we use such mechanisms for ourselves, for example, 
solving the crisis of antibiotics. During this lichen biohacking 
workshop different types of DNA will be analysed aiming to uncover this 
underestimated source of useful information.

How scientists employ bacteria to make them perform desired functions?
Workshop led by Vilnius-Lithuania iGEM: Gabrielius Jakutis, Miglė 
Kalvaitytė, Emilija Vasiliūnaitė

Transformation is one of the main methods in biotechnology, used to 
genetically modify microorganisms. During transformation, small circular 
DNA molecules, called plasmids, are incorporated into microorganisms, 
and genes, that programme new functions, are expressed to turn cells 
into micro-factories. Thus bacteria can produce products that humans 
need: from insulin to treat diabetes, to various enzymes, that 
supplement washing powder for stain removal.

Cut your (short) hair yourself!
Workshop led by Eglė

You have short hair, a clipper and at least 2 mirrors? This workshop is 
exactly for you! You will learn to cut hair using 3 different clipper 
numbers and to make a contouring line. Bring a clipper and a smaller, 
palm size mirror with you. The door is also open for those who prefer 
taking a passive part. No clipper? Drop a note and we will try to find one.