Best Education

Best Education

USAFA iGEM 2021- Defluorine Machine

About Us and Our Project: The 2021 USAFA iGEM is a 15 member team with four advisors that work in a classroom and extracurricular setting throughout the year at the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado. This year, our team continued to find a possible solution to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substance (PFAS) contamination through degradation. PFAS is a man-made chemical that is extremely environmentally stable and toxic to many organisms, including humans. Currently, there is not a solution that will effectively and efficiently break down this compound. Our project revolved around attempting to find a bioremediation technique utilizing synthetic biology. Working on this project opened international partnerships with other iGEM teams and created an amazing network for education at all levels of learning, from pre-K to teachers.

About Us

This USAFA iGEM team is a mix of biology, biochemistry, and civil engineering cadets at the United States Air Force Academy, originating from all over the country. We take pride in utilizing our multidisciplinary team throughout the entire iGEM process. This year we focused on collaboration and communication by forming partnerships with teams from across the globe and traveling to PFAS hotspots in the U.S. to meet with experts. These differing perspectives helped out team grow and have learned over the past year. We are incredibly excited to share our 2021 iGEM project: Defluorine Machine!

Our Project - Defluorine Machine

Defluorine Machine is the name of our USAFA iGEM project for 2021. Defluorine Machine is the name of our USAFA iGEM project for 2021. Our project involved transforming and creating proteins that could defluorinate possibly the most complex of PFAS compounds. Defluorine machine is more than just our project. Our vision is to have everyone's future safety influenced by a Defluorine Machine to limit toxic contamination in public water and ground sites.


We focused our efforts this year to achieve the following medal requirements


1. Education and Communication
2. Improvement of an Existing Part
3. Partnership
4. Modeling


1. Education
2. Integrated Human Practices