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General support

We wholeheartedly thank all of the following individuals and institutions for their interest and contributions to the development of this project. Their support is commendable and we thank them for expanding our synthetic biology toolbox.

We would like to thank our mentors Dr. Josh Leonard, Dr. Keith Tyo, and Dr. Tullman-Ercek for advising us throughout this process, attending our weekly meetings and making themselves available to answer any questions we had. We would also like to thank Dr. John Mordacq, Biological Sciences Professor at Northwestern, for letting us utilize his lab space for the duration of the summer and providing us with any necessary equipment and materials that we lacked.

Special thanks to the Northwestern 2016 team Tyler Lazar, Paul Perkovich, Michelle Cai, Tasfia Azim, Sam Davidson, Jordan Harrison and Shu Huang for guiding us through our iGEM journey, helping us become familiar with the lab space and giving us weekly bootcamps on cloning and proper lab technique. Thanks for providing the springboard for us to make more headway and coming to the rescue whenever we had yet another question.

Graduate student support

Thanks to our phenomenal graduate students for taking time off their busy schedule to help us troubleshoot cloning problems, brainstorm new experiments and teach us lab safety:

Bon Ikwuagwu: for reaching out and organizing a network of graduate students, meeting with us almost every day to talk to us about our project progress and coming to our meetings with words of encouragement.

Joseph Muldoon: for meeting with us to brainstorm mathematical modeling projects, troubleshooting our MATLAB code and giving us great advice on how to convey our model to an audience though graphics.

Lisa Burdette: for helping us decide on fractionation protocols, running Western blots with us, helping us troubleshoot cloning and expression problems and making herself available.

Chelsea Hu: for giving us detailed cloning instructions and troubleshooting advice, ideas on team structure and helping us frame a ODE based mathematical model.

Cameron Glasscock: for helping us run PCRs, minipreps, gels, and troubleshooting our project.

Taylor Dolberg: for helping us make Top10 and JC8031 competent cells at the Leonard lab.

Devin Stanford: for helping us characterize our vesicles using Nanosight and offering her expertise related to our nano-sized particles.

Taylor Dickman: for organizing a safety bootcamp and presentation.

Han Teng Wong: for giving us great cloning troubleshooting advice and assisting us in our attempt to image OMVs.

Bradley Biggs: for organizing a cloning bootcamp, showing us how to use Benchling to create constructs and assisting us in incorporating cjCas9 into our plasmids.

Sarah Stainbrook: for being one of our graduate student presenters in our Center of Talent Development (CTD) outreach event.

Jasmine Hershewe: for guiding us through the process of running Western blots.

Huan Weng: for training us on how to use the Lightboard.


With permission, Dr. Matthew DeLisa from Cornell University provided us with a hypervesicular strain of E. coli (JC8031). The hypervesicular strain is sourced from the lab of Dr. Roland Lloubes from the Institute of Microbiology of the Mediterranean.

Technical support

This work made use of the BioCryo facility of Northwestern University’s NUANCE Center, which has received support from the Soft and Hybrid Nanotechnology Experimental (SHyNE) Resource (NSF ECCS-1542205); the MRSEC program (NSF DMR-1121262) at the Materials Research Center; the International Institute for Nanotechnology (IIN); the Keck Foundation; and the State of Illinois, through the IIN.

Human practices support

Dr. London, Dr. Levy, Dr. Hayden and Dr. Mendelson donated their time to answer questions about the ethical administration of antibiotics for our human practices research.

Thank you to our sponsors!