Team:UCL London


Welcome to the Stress Busters Homepage

Welcome to the UCL_London team 2009!

Our project “Stress Light” will produce a series of synthetic biosensor devises, which can improve on the traditional sensors in bio-processing; by using green fluorescent protein (GFP), yellow fluorescent protein (YFP), cyan fluorescent protein (CFP) and red fluorescent protein (RFP) expression as indicators of different stresses for e.coli bacteria during cultivation. Our product and system is called "The Traffic Light Stress Sensor”. It is constructed to express fluorescent proteins of different colors in response to different stimuli which are inhibiting growth or harming production. Description We aim to build a sensor that can detect shear stress and low oxygen levels. We believe these two stresses are critical in a bioprocessing environment. We are applying e.coli’s native or modified promoters for DegP, Spy and NarK in order to induce transcription. Ideally the cells responses to stressed conditions should be sufficiently accurate, reliable and rapid for the stresses to be detected and mitigated in a timely manner.Objective Besides making bioprocesses easier to monitor, analyse and hence optimize, we believe that well functioning biobricks responding accurately to processing conditions (e.g. oxygen levels) can have a broad set of general applications; e.g. to make more efficient induction systems or be used to develop self inducible or increasingly self regulated bioprocesses.Vision

The Team

This is UCL's first time entering into this competition. We are the "Stress Busters" made up of three magnificent students, and 3 super supervisors!


The “Stress light” project was inspired by the quandary of having a deeper understanding on the internal environment and feelings of cells. Therefore, the Stress Busters came up with a novel biosensor that detects specific stresses at which the cells are under.

DegP and Spy for instance was the promoter used to detect any mis-folded protein produced by the cells. Nark and mNarK are other promoters used in response to oxygen stresses.

Overall these four to fives months our team has been working earnestly to try to identify particular stresses, ligate the parts and carry out various experiments to validate and verify our device as a working biosensor.

Back to top of Page

UCL London IGEM Wiki 2009

UCL main site