Life Science and Technology News
Team Tokyo Tech has won the Bronze Project Award at the 2023 Biomolecular Design Competition (BIOMOD). This year, the BIOMOD Jamboree, an annual conference at which all BIOMOD teams convene to present their team projects, was held from November 4 to 5 on Ookayama Campus.
BIOMOD, often referred to as the Robocon of biomolecules, is an international inter-university competition for undergraduates in molecular robotics and molecular computing. Each team designs and builds its own molecular devices and robots using biomolecules such as DNA, RNA, lipids, and proteins. The teams compete by presenting the results of their research via webpages, YouTube videos, and live conference-style presentations at the Jamboree.
The competition, first hosted by Harvard University in 2011 and held at the University of California, San Francisco since then, resumed its international format this year. Tokyo Tech was chosen as the first institution to host the contest outside the United States. The selection of Tokyo Tech, the birthplace of the Robocon International Design Contest, as the first non-US host of BIOMOD marks a significant milestone for the Institute.
Of the sixteen teams from eight countries and regions that registered for this year's competition, fourteen teams completed all the requirements and gave their presentations at the Jamboree held at Tokyo Tech. Team Tokyo Tech presented a "Micro Invader Game" consisting of artificial cells and DNA motors, which earned the team the Bronze Project Award. Unfazed by the fact that they were all 1st-year students, Team Tokyo Tech confidently gave their presentation and answered questions in front of participants from around the world. Their achievement speaks to the collaborative spirit of the team and the dedication of each individual member. Team Tokyo Tech is already planning its BIOMOD activities for next year, and with the support of the Institute behind it, further exciting results can be expected.
I joined BIOMOD 2023 as the leader of Team Tokyo Tech. Although I did not have any expertise in molecular robotics, or knowledge of wikis or YouTube, I was able to complete this project with the help of my teammates and the guidance of our faculty mentors, while building on my studies at Tokyo Tech.
The BIOMOD was my first international conference, and although I was nervous at first, this valuable experience opened up new opportunities to broaden my own horizons.
We hope to participate again next year and achieve even better results.
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