iGBA - Teams of BNU-China, SZU-China & UM-Macau


Key Questions

  1. What are the projects of the other iGEM teams?
  2. How can we contribute to the overall synbio community in the GBA?
  3. How can we co-host a regional networking event successfully?

Key Findings

  1. Exchange in epxeriences of mathematical modelling with the SUSTech-China Team. We learn the different techniques and applications that is common between iGEM teams.
  2. Holding the iGBA provides iGEM teams no matter they are highschool or university teams, a chance to interact with each other and relevant industry partners which is conducive to the overall growth of the synbio community, research and development of the iGEM projects.
  3. Our 3 co-hosts from BNUZH-China, SZU-China and UM-Macau are so kind to pay a visit to us to discuss the iGBA arrangements in Zhuhai. Together, we designed the logo, the logistics of invitation, transportation, accommodations and the activities during the forum.

Key Actions

  1. Be a responsible co-host and offer our help to ensure the smooth running of iGBA.
  2. Invite Hong Kong teams to join the meaningful event of iGBA.

About the Event


      Our team is very fortunate to contribute to the 1st iGEM Greater Bay Area Synthetic Biology Industry-Academia-Research Forum (1st iGBA) as the Hong Kong-based co-host.

      1s iGBA was held at Beijing Normal University, Zhuhai Campus on 19-20 August 2023 to promote the development of synthetic biology in the Greater Bay Area.

      1st iGBA is a regional networking event for iGEM teams initiated by 4 co-hosts, including iGEM teams from Beijing Normal University (Zhuhai Campus), University of Macau, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and Shenzhen University. As one of the most densely organized high-technology industrial district in the world, 1st iGBA provides a platform for iGEM teams and biologists from all over the world to cooperate and develop the bio-industry cluster in the Bay Area.

      The event spanned two days. The 19th event was divided into three parts: opening ceremony, industry-academia-research team booth interactions, and team-enterprise exchange, which was held at the Zhuhai Campus of Beijing Normal University; and the 20th event was divided into three parts: By-Health Factory Visit, visiting research institutes, and closing ceremony.


      Distinguished guests from the four hosting universities, from Zhuhai and Macau Governmental Offices, Conference of China iGEMer Community, 5 representatives from biotechnology companies and 10 iGEM teams from the GBA participated in this forum.

      Dr Tang from our team introduced the judging requirements of the iGEM competition, gave valuable advice to the participating teams, and expressed her encouragement and blessings to the teams in the Opening Ceremony.

      In the afternoon, the iGEM teams and enterprises carried out project promotions and exchanges at the booths set up on the site, aiming at promoting in-depth cooperation between industry, academia and research and preparing for putting the research projects of the iGEM Competition into practical industrial applications. We are very happy to see the High School iGEM team - HKSSC Team we invited participate online, and gained insights of their project through interacting with the university iGEM teams and the biotechnology firm representatives.

      The atmosphere was warm and the communication between the teams and enterprises was easy and pleasant. We also engaged in exchange in epxeriences of mathematical modelling with SUSTech-China Team which inspires the Dry Lab module to enhance our existing models.

Figure 1 Our team members attending iGBA
Figure 2 Group photo at iGBA

      On the following morning, the participants took a bus to BY-HEALTH's transparent factory to visit and study the intelligent production workshop and unmanned warehouse, and learn about the company's philosophy and culture, and related nutritional knowledge. The visit allowed the participants to understand the production mode and specific production, learning and research situation of cutting-edge biopharmaceutical companies, which will provide reference for promoting future cooperation between industry, academia and research.

      Zhuhai UM Science and Technology Research Institute is an industry-academia-research demonstration base built by the University of Macao in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. After lunch, the participants went to the Zhuhai AUC Institute of Science and Technology together. Through the introduction of the responsible staff of the Institute, they visited the laboratories, understood the development history and construction concept of the Institute, and also learnt a lot of new research ideas and saw new research projects and achievements. Through this visit, the participants were able to experience the development of industry-university-research co-operation in the Greater Bay Area and the positive impacts it brings to the society.

      At 4:00pm on the 20th, the activities of the first iGEM Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area Synthetic Biology Industry-Academia-Research Forum came to a successful conclusion. At the closing ceremony, Professor Chen Guokai, Acting Director of AUSTEC Zhuhai, and four representatives of the iGBA Organising Committee delivered closing speeches, expressing their support for this forum, their expectations for future iGBA forums, and their hopes for future cooperation between industry, academia and research in the Greater Bay Area.

      The road of cooperation between industry, academia and research in the Greater Bay Area of Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao is a long and arduous one, and we look forward to the exchanges in this forum to promote the progress of academic research and win-win situation in the industry in the Bay Area, so as to make a greater contribution to the economic development of the Greater Bay Area.

      As we discussed with different teams about various challenges of iGEM, such as modelling and AI programming, these discussions give rise to new directions and inspiration. It was better to share our team's project in the form of booths rather than one group presentation after another, as there was more interaction and freedom, as well as the opportunity to practice telling the audience the key points of the project and the most appealing aspects of the project in a short period of time. Of course, friendships and collaborations were also gained through this unforgettable trip to Zhuhai in Summer.

Figure 3 Visiting laboratories of Zhuhai UM Science and Technology Research Institute

HK-Macau Symposium

      We meet-up at CUHK to take turns to share our projects with other participating teams. In the Symposium we met high school iGEM teams, exchanged contacts with them and invited them to participate in our events. We also met UM-Macau, Poly-U and HKU teams again in the Symposium, deepening our understanding of their projects.

Figure 4 HK-Macau Symposium

UM-Macau Team

      UM-Macau visited us and talked about the upcoming iGBA event and enjoyed travelling in Hong Kong.

      After UM-Macau visited us, we also went to the University of Macau to revisit them! The team was so kind to take us on a tour of their lab, We exchanged interesting stories of working on the iGEM project.

Figure 5 Visiting UM-Macau Team

WHU-China Team

      WHU-China Team came to visit us at UST after our initial Zoom meeting. We had lunch together, share our photos beautiful school views and our project direction, giving each other IHP professor reach-out suggestions. Noel, our IHP module leader proposed that we can lauch a podcast series with WHU-China team, they agreed as well. Then, we started off on our exciting podcast recording adventure.

Figure 6 WHU-China Team visiting us