Assembling and functionalising synthetic yeast chromosome XI

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Dejana Jovicevic, Ben Blount, Tom Ellis

Imperial College, United States

Genome engineering is a fast-expanding branch of synthetic biology, at the cutting-edge of current research. The synthetic yeast project (Sc2.0) is one of the most significant and pioneering examples of genome engineering, with a global consortium aiming to completely synthesise a human-designed version of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast genome by 2017. Within the Sc2.0 consortium, Imperial College London is constructing the synthetic chromosome XI (0.67 Mbp). We have collaborated with Johns Hopkins University on the design and assembly strategy for SynChrXI and present our progress on the first 100 kbp. As well as building a synthetic chromosome, we are also investigating it’s suitability as a host for diverse genetic pathways and circuits and plan the construction of an artificial sub-telomere region to aid in the evolution of new phenotypes.