Team:VIT Vellore


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We, the VIT iGEM team, are comprised of thirteen undergraduate students from the fields of Biotechnology, Electronic Engineering and Mechanical Engineering. While the members of our team come from different parts of India, we have all encountered the same problems of polluted water and while infrastructure and methods to remediate the same are available, they are not economically feasible. Our project is thus inspired by Frugal Engineering, in which we endeavor to combine the advanced methods of genetic engineering with easily available materials to construct a microbial fuel cell that can generate power as well as eliminate the odor in waste water.

To accomplish this we have relied on the ability of certain bacteria that are capable of degrading the various pollutants found in sewage water. The bacteria we are using Rhodopseudomonas palutris, Bacillus subtilis and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. All three of these bacteria are found commonly in swine and domestic wastewater. These microbes break down the pollutants to simple compounds while producing energy.

Using synthetic biology, we plan to genetically modify Bacillus subtilis by incorporating a biobrick available in the iGEM kit that codes for the wintergreen smell. This addition serves to help reduce the offensive odours produced by sewage wastewater. The final phase of this project involves the generation of electricity from microbial activity via a fuel cell.

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