Christoph Neumayer

Bachelor Molecular Biotechnology (TUM)
Age: 20
Origin: Abensberg, Germany

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Favorite thing about iGEM: I like that I learn so many new methods and problem-solving strategies, which can really help me prepare for a future career in research.
Scientific Interests: Experimental Genetics and Synthetic Biology.
Fun Fact: I missed 5 minutes of “The Martian” when he did surgery on himself because I can´t see blood.
What makes you happy: when my freaking cloning works and when someone gives me food.
Role Model: Donald E. Ingber and Feng Zhang.

Benedikt Dürr

Bachelor Biology (LMU)
Age: 20
Origin: Munich, Germany

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Favorite thing about iGEM: So many cool ideas.
Scientific Interests: I want to copy the mechanisms of nature to use them under a new purpose.
Fun Fact: I like to philosophize about everything.
What makes you happy: Climbing, nature, traveling, and new impressions.
Who is your role-model: Alexander von Humboldt

Sven Klumpe

Master Biochemistry (TUM)
Age: 23
Origin: Germany

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Favorite thing about iGEM: The possibility of experiencing the development of a project from the idea to the implementation, and being able to influence it a lot along the way.
Fun fact about me: An old friend of mine used some music we produced in one of his movies. So by accident, I am now credited in the Music section on Cannes Festival's webpage.
What makes you happy? Experiments, simulations and/or electronics that work out the way I expected. My music being on when I enter the lab/room. Jam Sessions!
Who is your role-model? Linus Pauling and B.B. King

Patrick Wilke

Master Biochemistry (TUM)
Age: 23
Origin: Germany

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Favorite thing about iGEM: Working in a team of motivated students and helping each other out.
Fun fact about me:When I was little, I spent the whole day playing table football at the school. Once, I lost sense of time and my worried mother called the police on me. .
What makes you happy? Wandering in the forest and seeing nature. Although I sometimes get lost.
Who is your role-model? Harry Houdini

Erika Chacin De Leonardis

Master Biology (LMU)
Age: 26
Origin: Caracas, Venezuela

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Favorite thing about iGEM: the possibility to create something novel with freedom and sharing science with people outside the field.
Scientific Interests: Epigenetics, Synthetic Biology, and Drug Development.
Fun Fact: I have a very low tolerance to heat after it goes up to 24 °C so I always bring a fan with me everywhere during the summer.
What makes you happy: Cloning working, binge watching movies, rock concerts, and air conditioning.
Role Model: Marie Curie and Craig Venter.

Ludwig Bauer

Master Biochemistry (TUM)
Age: 22
Origin: Erding, Germany

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Favorite thing about iGEM: Learning about new things that are not directly related to my biochemistry studies and working in a multidisciplinary team.
Scientific Interests: Biological and natural products chemistry
Fun Fact: He keep smiling even in stressful situations.
What makes you happy: A large peak when purifying proteins.
Role Model: M. T. Cicero

Maximilian Honemann

Master Biochemistry (TUM)
Age: 22
Origin: Stuttgart, Germany

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Favorite thing about iGEM: The chance to work on a project that we chose ourselves.
Scientific Interests: DNA Nanotechnology and Electron Microscopy.
Fun Fact: I would rather be late for an exam than skip breakfast.
What makes you happy: Positive clones and time spent with friends.
Role Model: One should not limit himself to the achievments of others. - Albert Einstein, my role model.

Rob Strasser

Master Biology (LMU)
Age: 25
Origin: Kirmbach, Germany

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Favorite thing about iGEM: Creative and positive people everywhere.
Scientific Interests: Infectious and Immune Diseases.
Fun Fact: Sometimes dresses like Disney´s Aladdin.
What makes you happy: The smell of freshly mowed grass.
Role Model: Christopher Hitchens.

Dawafuti Sherpa

Master Biology (LMU)
Age: 27
Origin: Kathmandu, Nepal

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Favorite thing about iGEM: meeting people with amazing ideas and trying out new stuffs.
Scientific Interests: almost everything related to Molecular and Cell Biology and of course Synthetic Biology.
Fun Fact: need at least 8 hours sleep to function properly.
What makes you happy: spending time with my family, yummy food, nature, sunsets, travelling to strange cities/places, overcoming hurdles in life, and good results from lab experiments.
Role Model: My dad and mom.

Milica Zivanic

Bachelor Molecular Biotechnology (TUM)
Age: 21
Origin: Belgrade, Serbia

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Favorite thing about iGEM: acquiring knowledge and skills in different fields.
Scientific Interests: Genetics, Immunology, and Pharmacology.
Fun Fact: I learned Spanish as a kid just by watching telenovelas
What makes you happy: seeing and making other people happy
Role Model: Novak Djokovic

Jorge Andres Quintero Serna

Bachelor Computer Science (LMU)
Age: 23
Origin: Cali, Colombia

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Favorite thing about iGEM: Students can develop their own projects and learn about original projects from teams around the world.
Scientific Interests: in vitro DNA synthesis.
Fun Fact: I'm extremely cold resistant and can survive winter equipped with a light jacket.
What makes you happy: Arguing, about anything and everything. The more pointless the discussion the better.
Role Model: My dad.

Florian Katzmeier

Master Biophysics (TUM)
Age: 23
Origin: Landsberg am Lech, Germany

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Favorite thing about iGEM: Working late into the night.
Scientific Interests: Theoretical Physics and doing handicraft.
Fun Fact: I do things for reasons.
What makes you happy: Coffee, cigarettes, and things that finally work as expected.
Role Model: Isaac Newton.

Julian Reinhard

Bachelor Bioinformatics, Molecular Biotech. (LMU + TUM)
Age: 25
Origin: Bruchsal, Germany

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Favorite thing about iGEM: Trying and mixing new experimental protocols.
Scientific Interests: Structural Bioinformatics and Systems Biology.
Fun Fact: Developed RNase anxiety disorder during iGEM.
What makes you happy: Getting things to (finally!) work.
Role Model: Craig Venter.

Florian Rothfischer

Master Biochemistry (TUM)
Age: 22
Origin: Munich, Germany

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Favorite thing about iGEM: CRISPR and night shifts.
Scientific Interests: Microbiology, DNA-Nanorobotics, and Bio-Organic Chemistry.
Fun Fact: The Professor for whom I work knows Florence Welch mother personally.
What makes you happy: Florence and the Machine's concerts.
Role Model: Florence Leontine Mary Welch and Francis Crick.

Igor Styazhkin

Bachelor Biochemistry (TUM)
Age: 28
Origin: St. Petersburg, Russia

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Favorite thing about iGEM: Freedom and internationality.
Scientific Interests: Origin of Life and Evolution.
Fun Fact: I tell the best jokes.
What makes you happy: Summer.
Role Model: Plate reader.

Matthias Lenz

Bachelor Biology (TUM)
Age: 22
Origin: Velden, Germany

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Favorite thing about iGEM: Having people from diverse backgrounds come together and seeing their different approaches to problems.
Scientific Interests: Genomics and Biomedicine.
Fun Fact: A Professor of Genetics once told me I had a "really distinct phenotype" and walked away without any further explanation.
What makes you happy: Observing nature, reading, bouldering.
Role Model: Top tier scientists that also communicate science to the public like Richard Feynman or Richard Dawkins.

Teeradon Phlairaharn

Bachelor Molecular Biotechnology (TUM)
Age: 23
Origin: Bangkok, Thailand

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Favorite thing about iGEM: Meet new people.
Scientific Interests: Plant System Biology
Fun Fact: I laugh when people talk about serious topic.
What makes you happy: Food.
Role Model: Dr. Pakpoom Subsoontorn.


Aurore Dupin

PhD student on synthetic circuits

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She comes from France, studied at the ENS Cachan and got her Master in Chemistry from the UPMC in Paris. Currently, she is a PhD student in the field of synthetic biology and is working on spatially organized synthetic circuits. At the beginning of our lab work, she trained us in key experiments like cloning and RNA isolation. We can confirm that she is a very patient supervisor, always with a nice answer even after asking her several times the same questions.

Lukas Aufinger

PhD student on cell-free gene expression

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He studied Physics and Biophysics at TUM. Before serious science got in the middle of his life, he used to do long jump. Now in his free time, he goes hiking and climbing. He has no clue about cloning, but is always willing to help us with any problem we have. He gives us advice on hardware and is always pushing us to learn new things outside the biologists’ comfort zone.

Benjamin Aleritsch

PhD student on cellular computers

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He studied Aircraft-Engineering and got his Master in Physics at the LMU. Now, as a PhD student, he is attempting to build a Turing-capable computer in a living cell, which expanded his skills to microbiology and genetics. He is an IT- and Tech-Guru that can build anything. For that reason, he gives us advice in different fields like hardware, software, and web design. He's a heavy metal hearted nature-boy that has finished the Ironman twice in the two years past. His next goal: to cycle up to Mauna Kea's summit.

Michael Heymann

Post-doc at the Max Plank Institute for Biochemistry

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He studied Biology and Biophysics in Berlin and Boston and now spends his days watching liquids flow down microfluidic channels to study dynamic biological systems. He is a fan of 3D printing big and small things and when he is not riding a bicycle, he likes to spend his vacations to spray nanocrystals in big free-electron lasers. Whenever he is around he is helping us understand and solve plumbing problems for our project.

Dong-Jiunn Jeffery Truong

PhD student developing Molecular Tools for Non-Invasive Imaging and Actuation

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Jeff studied Molecular Biotechnology at TUM and is doing his PhD at the Helmholtz Zentrum München, where he is engineering molecular systems to control and observe cellular processes with different stimuli like light, magnetic fields, and sound. As an iGEM veteran, his experiences in the competition and the work dynamic have been very valuable, just like his knowledge in synthetic biology and biological engineering provided us with great ideas for our project.


Professor Friedrich Simmel

Chair of Physics of Synthetic Biology at TUM

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Prof. Simmel is an elected member of acatech, Germany's National Academy of Science and Engineering,and Chair of Physics of Synthetic Biological Systems at TUM. His research is focused on the design of biochemical circuits and DNA-based nanostructures and systems, where he has contributed with important advances on the field. As co-coordinator of the Nanosystems Initiative Munich (NIM), Prof. Simmel helps bringing together the expertise of different research groups in their respective fields to design and develop nanosystems with a broad range of applications.

Professor Gil Westmeyer

Professor for Molecular Imaging

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Since 2011, Prof. Westmeyer has been in the Faculty of Medicine at TUM. Currently, he is the Head of the Molecular Magnetic Resonance Imaging at the Chair of Biological Imaging group and works on the development of novel molecular visualization systems and control mechanisms for brain function imaging. Furthermore, his group uses this technology to gain new insights in neuropsychiatric diseases. At the Helmholtz Zentrum München, Prof. Westmeyer leads a Young Investigator Group focused on Molecular Imaging.