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The Illinois iGEM team has been working to engineer a decoder function within E. coli. Decoders are logic devices used frequently in low-level computer architecture. We are creating a 2 to 4 decoder, which takes two binary inputs to activate one of four outputs. Each output corresponds to a specific combination of the inputs. With the presence of lactose and arabinose, our Bacterial Decoder will express Green Fluorescent Protein. If only lactose is present, a different fluorescent protein will be expressed. This goes for the other two combinations as well (only arabinose, or neither sugars). To implement logic we use combinations of small non-coding RNAs and transcription factors. The system allows the next engineer to swap standard parts in and out to change the inputs and outputs. Our Bacterial Decoder can help sense for multiple environmental cues, having implications for medical diagnostics and environmental and water contaminant detection.

For a more detailed description of our project, please see our Project page.

Our team is also excited about the project that the Illinois Tools team has chosen. Please visit their Wiki page to view their project.



We are very grateful to our sponsors for allowing us to compete in the 2009 iGEM competition. Thank you for all your contributions to the Illinois iGEM 2009 Team!


If you would like to make a financial donation to the Illinois iGEM Team, you may do so online. Please click on the link below. Thank you!

Questions about our Wiki page? Please email us at