Team:CCU Taiwan/Engagement

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Engagement and education

Our human practice involves in questions relating to public, public acceptance and biosafety. Since our product, Carindex, is a genetically engineered product, a general concern to the public, we put a lot of effort on discussing about it.

Public engagement

1. Product pamphlet:

In order to let the public understand our product in an easy way, we released pamphlets in order to do so. In the pamphlet, we briefly introduced how our product can be used, the technology that is applied, let them know that Carindex is a genetically engineered product. Then we tell them about the kill switch in our gene circuit design, let them know the concept of biosafety, at the same time, promoting the safety of our product.

2. Public Booth:

In order to enable our product to actually reach the public, we communicate closely with the public and asked them for feedbacks. From these feedbacks, we modified our product so that it can be more intimate to social needs. We also cooperated with a kumquat farm which is a famous tourist attraction from Taiwan Chiayi for holding a booth. In the crowd booth, we showed our prototype and the product pamphlet to the public, introduced our project including knowledge regrading dental health care, the function of our product and the follow-up benefits of it. Many parents and children showed a great interest in Carindex after the introduction. We had received a lot of feedbacks from the public, and grasp a better understanding to the cavity problem that they had. These precious feedbacks helped us to improve the Carindex and made it in line with the user needs!

3. Taiwan Health Insurance System:

Taiwan's health insurance has always been a discussed issue of social policy.
When we conducted the PMR market survey, we found that the general public did not have a complete understanding of Taiwan health insurance.
What’s worse is that this leads to the abuse of social welfare system, resulting in the waste of social resources and the burden of state finances.
Carindex is expected to be able to collaborate with the country's health insurance system, and hoping that users will be able to know and improve their oral condition.
Due to the nature of dental caries, they are easily ignored by patients since it won't make them feel hurt at the beginning.
Nonetheless, it would be too late to go to the dentist after it hurts. The worst result might be doing tooth implantation, a painful and costly procedure to the patient, and to the government pocket as well.
In order to save the follow-up medical resources, Carindex can help users on early caries detection so that potential patient would go to the dentist early and cure dental caries before it became serious.
We want to let the public know about the fact of the health insurance system and also having a correct concept about it, so we made a series of detailed introduction in order to do so.
We explained the meaning of health insurance and it's condition in Taiwan over the past few years.
Expectedly, this could bring the public a correct concept to maintain a sustainable development of national resources.

Education engagement

1. Biology Experiment:

To let students learn about what we are doing, we designed a series of fun and easy DNA purification experiments for them. After the activities, we still remembered that many of them were so excited at the DNA that they purified. They said that they enjoyed it a lot and think that such activities are very awesome, hoping to have more opportunities to participate the same thing in the future.

2. Synthetic Biology Camp:

We set up plans to promote synthetic biology right after the summer started. We went to universities and senior high schools, introduced iGEM and synthetic biology and our project to the students so that they can understand the biotechnology as well as the various aspects of the impact from it. Many students had concerns about genetic engineered products and the related issues. After knowing what we were doing, they asked us what if the genetic engineered bacteria we made broke out the device, how are we going to deal with it. We told them about the kill switch we designed, ease their concern; at the same time, bring the security concept of biotechnology to them. According to after-class feedback, before the class, most of the students had have the same concern about genetic engineered product. However, after class, most of them grasped a correct and better understanding of synthetic biology, genetic modification, and it security. This eased their concern and make them want to do the same thing in future.

Professional engagement

1. Visiting the Profession:

We visited Professor Mrs. Xiu-mei Chen of Taiwan University of Science and Technology in June this year, and asked her about the technology of detecting the concentration of bacteria on the chip. Then we learned that the chip developed by Professor Chen Xiumei could detect the concentration of many bacteria as well as the one we wanted to detect Streptococcus mutans, S. mutans. Therefore, we asked Professor Chen Xiu Mei about the technology and gained lots of meaningful advices to improve Caridex.

2. Inviting Professions:

In order to make our product more fitting to the market, we invited the CEO of the Renew Biocare Corporation Mr. Ully to discuss the current development of the device. During the discussion, we got a chance to know the similar products on the market. We absorbed the relevant advantages of those products and managed to apply them onto our product to improve the whole project.
Furthermore, this company is one of the leading dental materials companies in the world, so we also asked them to help us check whether our product is safe and forward-looking.
Additionally, we invited to the National Yunlin University of Science and Technology teacher Mr. Zhong-guang Chen to teach us how to establish a product business model design, to help us in the subsequent commercialization of the product.

3. Dentist Collaboration:

We visited a number of Taiwan Chiayi local dental clinic: 百利、沃爾、邱. From there, we understood the actual needs of the patient from the perspective of dentists and the patient actual oral cavity situation. We also had a better understanding of common habits of patients. The information helped us move one more step closer the public. Afterward, we collaborated with them, asking them to help the team define our product internal data. We used the standard dental caries level of ICDAS (International Caries Detection and Assessment System) organization, which is recommend by dentists.

4. Primary school collaboration:

After contacting with the public, we found out that there are chances that parents might be willing to buy this product for their children. So we visited primary school in Chiayi, and asked that whether they want to cooperate with us by using this device at school but we found out that the school would ask the dentist examine the Taiwanese young children every three months. If one's oral condition was not healthy, the dentist would ask one to see the dentist again after school. However, the process where the dentist checked the children oral condition was often too long, causing many inconvenience. Therefore, the school said that if the device improved it accuracy, they would like do the cooperation.