Bacteria are one of the most ubiquitous organisms on earth, and live in interconnected communities called microbiomes.
They naturally transfer genetic material between themselves in a process called horizontal gene transfer, trading and sharing information with one another.
Therefore, trying to selectively engineer genes into a specific species within a microbiome proves difficult. Horizontal gene transfer can occur, spreading the engineered genes to other species in the microbiome.
This can cause biosafety issues with ecological and environmental ramifications.
Our software, Communique, aims to solve this problem by engineering genes into a language that can be understood only by handpicked members within the microbiome. This ensures that the desired species alone can utilize the gene, even when it’s passed around within the community.
By using this approach, we can ensure increased productivity in utilizing bacterial communities in various fields such as agrotech, food tech, human microbiome therapy, and more. We aim to provide higher biosafety standards and new possibilities for engineering microbiomes.
To learn about our project, you're welcome to start with our Promotional Video and some quick links below!
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