We are a group of dedicated high school students from Washington High School, hoping to use this opportunity to gain new hands-on experience to further our knowledge in synthetic biology. This our first year attending this competition for the majority of the team, so we took upon the challenge and utilized our passion to face the barriers of inexperience.
Recent advances have enabled the use of ultrasound to image the function of specific biomolecules and cells across cellular and tissue barriers. An underused application of ultrasound in synthetic biology is genetically encodable acoustic biomolecules, which could serve as the ultrasound equivalents of fluorescent proteins for noninvasive molecular and cellular imaging. Our project aims to devise protein nanospheres allowing the use of various ultrasound imaging modalities to visualize cellular signaling sonogenetically. Our interest in the applications of sonochemistry to synthetic biology arose from a really bad doctor who reference that just kind of stuck. Although on a more serious note, our interest in gas vesicles arose from interest in visualizing moelcular processes within the cell, out of a desire to take biology out of the classroom and into the lab.