Team:NCKU Tainan/Criteria


  1. Registration and Giant Jamboree attendance.
    1. All members of the team have registered as an undergraduate team in iGEM 2021.
  2. Competition deliverables.
    1. According to the Deliverables page on iGEM’s website:
      1. We have created a wiki page, which includes an Attributions page.
      2. A Wiki page is also dedicated to the Safety part of our project.
      3. We have prepared for the team presentation during the Jamboree.
      4. We have submitted the Judging form and safety forms before the deadline.
  3. Attributions
    1. We have an Attributions page for whom that has helped us along our iGEM journey.
  4. Project Inspiration and Description
    1. Our project aimed to develop a synthetic biology method to address chronic stress-induced depression. To get further information about the background and inspiration, please look at our Description page.
  5. Contribution
    1. To detect depressive biomarkers, we devised a method to target it by using an existing iGEM part successfully. Furthermore, the bioengineered bacteria could release taurine after detection. Complete information about iGEM parts is available at our Parts page which we have completed before the deadline. As for our contribution, please refer to the Contribution page.


  1. Engineering Success
    1. This year, we utilized knockout (KO) technique to tackle two major problems in our project. To increase the sensitivity of IFN-γ sensing system and make OmpA/OprF chimeric protein well expressed, we removed the ompA gene. On the other hand, to prevent our engineered E. coli from degrading taurine, we knocked out tauD gene. Both knockouts are successfully done without affecting other physiological functions. For more details, please look at Engineering success page.
  2. Collaboration
    1. Despite the pandemic, there was nothing that could stop iGEM teams worldwide from working together. Instead, it pushes the limit of what collaboration can be in an iGEM competition. We collaborated with many teams so that we were able to create and achieve numerous meaningful results like Depressured Game and business model. For more details, please look at the Collaboration page.
  3. Human Practices
    1. This year, we engaged with potential users and stakeholders to understand their needs and incorporate them into our project. To make our project successful in the real world, we examined the impact and feasibility of developing, scaling, and commercializing our project. In addition, we also conducted a market survey for us to understand better the current market’s condition. For more details, please look at the Human practice page.
  4. Proposed Implementation
    1. Our ultimate goal was to bring our project into real life. Therefore, in the proposed implementation, we described how we would apply each aspect of our project in the real world. For more details, please look at the Implementation page.


  1. Integrated Human Practice
    1. The three main focuses of IHP were product positioning, food safety, and the business model of MenTAUR. First, we positioned our product as a nutritional food instead of a health supplement or treatment by reaching out to Taiwan’s Food and Drug Administration (TFDA) and National Applied Research Laboratories (NARLabs). Second, since our target was to develop Menbles into an actual product, we contacted the marketing manager of Sunshine Energy Technology, a company specializing in bubble production in Taiwan. Third, we learned of the food safety regulations of bubble manufacturing. Finally, to gain more entrepreneurial insights about starting a business, we visited Trade Win Biotech and developed our three-generation business model with the CEO, Dr. Lance Cheng. For more details, please look at the Human practice page.
  2. Improvement of an Existing Part
    1. For a more straightforward observation of the localization and dynamics of protein, we improve (BBa_K2610031) from the 2019 iGEM Leiden team by changing GFP (BBa_E0040) into sfGFP (BBa_I746916), which is more stably expressed and can be checked under UV light. On the other hand, we added activator protein SoxR (BBa_K223000) into our part to solve the leakage problem. For more information, please look at the Improvement page.
  3. Project Modeling
    1. Our project consists of two mathematical models that describe biological pathways of taurine production and taurine’s effect on oxidative stress. First, we calculated the maximum taurine production yield efficiency in the enzyme kinetic model. Second, we proved that taurine metabolites alleviate excessive ROS and depression by the gut-brain axis in the ROS scavenging enhancing system. For more details, please look at the Model page.
  4. Proof of Concept
    1. To verify that our Menbles are practical and potential in the treatment of CSID in the future, we used step-by-step experiments and modulations to prove our concepts. All steps have confirmed that the mechanisms of Menbles can perform well as we expected. For more details, please look at the Proof of Concept page.
  5. Partnership
    1. With iGEM SDU Denmark and CCU_Taiwan, we have established a firm partnership collaborating in dry lab and human practices. Our team kept up dynamic and frequent interactions throughout the season which resulted in meaningful results. For more details, please look at the Partnership page.
  6. Communication
    1. From the market survey conducted, we found out that most public was still wary of GMOs. Thus, we have come up with several ways to communicate and educate the public about synthetic biology regarding mental health issues. For more details, please look at the Communication page.
  7. Excellence in Another Area
    1. Since the beginning of teaming up, we have designed many products, such as the E. coli costume, souvenirs, comic, booklet, and education kit. What's more, the products were well-received by our supporters. For more details, please look at the Excellence in Another Area page.