PCR-Cycler for young researchers at the University of Stuttgart

Sep 14, 2017

The Labexchange Foundation is supporting students with the development of a biological pipe cleaner. On behalf of the Labexchange Foundation, Dr Wolfgang Kuster handed over a donation of a Stratagene Robocycler 96 to the project team at the University of Stuttgart.

Georg Singer wrote in his e-mail to Labexchange, “it would be absolutely fantastic and make things a lot easier for our team if Labexchange were to fund this device for us!”  On behalf of a group of 10 students from the University of Stuttgart, Singer asked for support with participation in the largest international student competition in the field of biotechnology. The “international genetically engineered machine” competition (iGEM) seeks to bring together and promote the fields of synthetic biology, bioinformatics and systems biology. This interdisciplinary contest was initiated by MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) in 2004. The University of Stuttgart is taking part in the competition for the first time.

By “this device”, Singer was referring to a second-hand Stratagene Robocycler 96 worth € 1,250. The students needed a PCR cycler, provided by the Labexchange Foundation, for their “LIGHT UP THE PIPE” project. The research team presented its project on the occasion of the hand-over of the donation by the foundation’s founder Dr Wolfgang Kuster.

The students have set themselves the task of developing a biological pipe cleaner based on the use of enzymes. For this reason, the biological pipe cleaner has to be more environmentally friendly than chemical cleaners used to date. The emphasis lies on the degradation of waste matter containing keratin, such as hair, soap residue and fat particles. As part of their project, the students want to develop a biobrick containing keratinase, lipase and esterase and combine these in such a way that contamination and waste of this kind can be sustainably degraded using biotechnological means.

The dedication and ambition invested by the students in their non-profit research project means they are making a positive contribution to environmental protection. The sponsorship of such innovative ideas, which take into account ecology and sustainability, is a cause which is particularly close to the heart of the Labexchange Foundation.



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