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ZB MED – Informationszentrum Lebenswissenschaften
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50931 Köln


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ZB MED – Informationszentrum Lebenswissenschaften
Friedrich-Hirzebruch-Allee 4
53115 Bonn




Infrastruktur- und Forschungszentrum für lebenswissenschaftliche Daten und Informationen.

Open Enzyme

Enzymes are critical for all synthetic biology research and every molecular diagnostic test, making them vital tools for global health and climate change. However, enzymes are primarily manufactured in Europe, North America and parts of Asia and, most often, require a cold distribution chain for stability. This makes them expensive and unreliable to ship to other parts of the world. For example, this has been a longstanding problem for researchers building diagnostics and biosensor tools. Supply chains broke down further under the pressure of the COVID-19 pandemic, demonstrating the impact of reagent availability on health innovations and health security in many low- and middle-income countries.

As a response to the need to distribute the means of enzyme production and to enable more equitable access to synthetic biology, we developed a number of open source DNA toolkits containing >200 interchangeable modules of enzymes, reporters and useful building blocks, plus protocols and expression handbooks. 

In this workshop, we will look at the entire enzyme collection from the Open Bioeconomy Lab, present the development and impact of the collection using the OpenVent as a case study, using MoClo standards with a tailored syntax, and discuss frugal expression and purification techniques. These include parts tailored for low-resource and sustainable protocols, such as light- and heat-inducible promoters and affinity tags for immobilization on cellulose and silica. 

We will introduce the Reagent Collaboration Network (Reclone) community that has grown around the toolkit and the training, research and entrepreneurship that it has enabled across several continents. This workshop will demonstrates the potential for distributed manufacturing of enzymes and other reagents to catalyse synthetic biology for global health.

Info at a glance:

  • Format: Presentation and practice
  • Date: Wednesday July 5th, 09.30-12.30 a.m.
  • Room: Room Wangari Maathai (ZB MED reading room 2nd floor rear right)
  • Workshop language: English
  • Workshop level: At least a Bsc in Biology, biological sciences, biomedical and biological engineering and other related courses.
  • Workshop-Team: 
    Prince Edem SamohResearcher and Laboratory Technician at Ashesi University and Open Bioeconomy Lab, Berekuso/Ghana, ORCID: 0000-0003-1786-1416