Building Blocks: A revolution
The Johns Hopkins team presents the work of a Build-a-Genome course that fabricates synthetic yeast genome Sc2.0 and provides students tools to meld seamless arrays of DNA into redesigned synthetic chromosomes. Our team is part of a larger effort to develop new technologies and standards for synthetic genomic construction allowing for the production of longer more complicated DNA sequences without certain constraints of current Biobrick standards. By using overlap assembly PCR, followed by Uracil Specific Excision Reaction (USER), and finally, multiple rounds of homologous recombination we create pieces of chromosomes and finally full chromosomes, efficiently and cheaply. We will present improved methodology for building block synthesis, the software created to aid in our synthesis, and applications of the yeast genome redesign, focusing on the implications the Build-a-Genome course has on future genomic technologies that rely on and teach students.