iGEM York 2017

DIHM Assisted Co-culture Optimisation

QWACC: a Quicker Way to Analyse Co-Cultures

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Genetically engineering C. reinhardtii and E. coli in order to form a co-culture with industrial potentials.


Using optical diffraction to create and probe 3D images through holography in order to monitor co-cultures.


Cell counting and analysis using holograms formed from images taken with our hardware.

The Project

Upon being asked to find the number of microorganisms in a given sample, the response from members of our iGEM team has invariably been a long sigh and a plea to the realms of the supernatural.

That most human quality - laziness - alongside flaws in traditional techniques, which we will revisit below, has led to us designing a potential solution in the form of a Digital Inline Holographic Microscope (DIHM).

In particular, we discovered that, when studying co-cultures, there are precious few methods of counting cells that are accurate, fast, cheap and non-destructive.

We decided, therefore, to try to bring together two promising areas of science in this project:
Digital Holographic Microscopy and Co-Culturing.

Our Work

To easily find our achievements with respect to the iGEM 2017 competition, please see our Achievements page for a list of direct links.