Podcast: Synversations

Our Goal

On our inaugural season of Synversations we talk to grad students, religious figures, community leaders, and many more to understand how biotechnology would affect their communities and to clear up some misconceptions about it.

Ep 1: Introduction

In our first episode of Synversations host Tess, Wet Lab lead Victoria and Dry Lab lead Ali introduce us to the world of synthetic biology. They tell us the basics of the field and how iGEM Toronto is using CRISPR-Cas9 on their 2017 project. Where will synthetic biology take us? What are its limits? How will it impact our lives?


Ep 2: Ethics

Co-president Katariina Jaenes and Policy and Practices lead Estée discuss how ethics plays a role in the advancement of synthetic biology. With a special focus on CRISPR-Cas9 we tackle questions like how can we control this technology? Will it cure Malaria? Should we use it to eradicate Mosquitoes? This and more in the ethics episode of Synversations.


Ep 3: Bioengineering

To University of Toronto Professor Dr. David MacMillan synthetic biology is an engineering application on cells. With our host, Katariina Jaenes, the two consider the future of synthetic biology, difficulties of moving from research to reality, and address public perceptions on the discipline.


Ep 4: Arts

On this episode of Synversations, our host, Tess King, talks with Tracy Xiang, a graphic artist, and Ananda Gabo, a designer. The two artists explore the interesting ways in which they combine their interest and experience in synthetic biology with the arts and talk about the longstanding tradition between the two disciplines. We learn about the particulars of representing synthetic biology through illustrations and the importance of open source biology to further develop this unique and long standing intersection.


Ep 5: Business

Ontario Genomics strategic planning manager Jordan Thompson and iGEM Toronto co-president Katariina Jaenes examine the commercial applications of synthetic biology and the inherently interdisciplinary nature of funding and commercializing synthetic biology.


Ep 5.5: Interview with Dr. Latvhee

In this extended part of our business episode our co-president Katariina Jaenes goes to Estonia and had the opportunity to speaks with Dr. Petri Lahtvee of the University of Tartu about the intersection of business and synthetic biology.


Ep 6: Collaboration

In this bonus episode of Synversations iGEM Toronto speaks with other iGEM teams. They discuss their projects for 2017, troubles they’ve run into and fun times had over the year. A big thank you to iGEM, McMaster, Ottawa, Waterloo, Guelph, Dalhousie, Copenhagen, Paris, Uppsala and Estonia for participating in this episode.