Team:BVCAPS Kansas


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Team BVCAPS_Kansas

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Team Member Biographies

Corinne Andresen

I'm seventeen and go to Blue Valley Northwest. I came to CAPS to prepare for biomedical or biological engineering; I hope to go into genetic reseach; I'm not sure on what. I run track and cross country, write, and play the cello in the school orchestra and in Kansas City Youth Symphony.

Daniel Assyia

I am currently a senior a Blue Valley High School and a student at CAPS in the molecular medicine class. At Blue Valley High I am taking AP biology, which has taught me a lot about various topics of biology. Next year I will be attending Ku to study microbiology, to pursue my passion for biology. I currently work at the Overland Park Arboretum, and have a small fertilizing business.My interests outside of school include; soccer, hiking, snowboarding, and spending time with friends.

Kyle Bannerman

I am an 18 year old senior currently enrolled in the Blue Valley CAPS Bioscience class. Last semester I took the CAPS Aerospace engineering and decided to explore a biology related CAPS course to explore other fields of interest. I excel in school at math and science which is the general area of what I am interested in studying when I go to college. I was born October 22nd 1993 in Warrensburg Missouri. I have lots of siblings which include a sister, two step-sisters, and a step-brother.

Jonathan Samuel Hermanson

Hailing from Overland Park, Kansas a Senior at Blue Valley North High School who is currently enrolled at BVCAPS in the Bioscience Molecular Medicine and Bioengineering class. He is currently deciding between studying Bioscience at University of Kansas, Tulane, or Indiana University. He wishes to persue a degree that will drive his ever growing interest in Molecular Biology. Jonathan is always pondering the world around him and wishes to work with his peers to discover or modify something that will in the end greatly benifit mankind.

Ryan McLean

I am currently a senior at Blue Valley Northwest High School in Overland Park, Kansas. There are four other Blue Valley schools that filter a few students into a new facility called Blue Valley CAPS. Last semester I participated in the Aerospace Engineering strand, working with mentors from Garmin and other businesses to start making a flight simulator. Now, I spend the last 3 school hours of every weekday at this building in the Molecular Biology and Bioengineering class. I'm hoping to use the knowledge I gain from this class, and the connections I make to continue my education next year at the University of Kansas in the pharmacy program. I greatly enjoy my math and science classes, and tend to do succeed in school. I am taking several classes with dual college credit through the College Now program, and have made it on the Johnson County Community COllege part-time honor role. In my free time I enjoy participating in community service also, and I am a board member of the Kansas Association for Youth (KAY). I also like to play tennis and other sports with friends whenever the chance arises, and read when I am by myself.

Ryan Pohl

I am currently a 18-year-old senior at Blue Valley Northwest. I attend the Center for Advanced Professional Studies in the class named The Machinery of Life. I plan on going to the University of Kansas, and I plan to pursue a degree relating to science. I am most interested in physics and chemistry.

Taina Rodriguez I’m 16 years old and I go to Blue Valley West High School as a junior. This is my first semester going into CAPS: Machinery of Life this year and I plan on coming back next year. I have two older brothers, one graduated from KU last year and the other didn’t attend college. I volunteer at Wayside Waifs every Sunday. I plan on going to JCCC for 2 years and then transfering to K-State for 4 years.


Currently, the Bioscience class is still debating what our project should be about. We have done research on other iGem projects from the past to help us get an idea of what other iGem projects are about and what other teams have done. In class we have been working on increasing our knowlege of biology especially dealing with DNA and the processes invloved with DNA.


Radon, a very deadly carciniogin, the second most common cause of lung cancer. It is tasteless, odorless, and colorless and is commonly found in deposits in the ground. According to the EPA, every 1 in 15 homes is estimated to have elevated levels of radon. Our team is contemplating using a bacteria and the registry of parts to test for radon and have a reporter gene will indicate the presence of radon. [[[1]]]

The lable "Probiotic," is frequenly used to sell products that promise better digestive health. In reality, these probiotics are common but important gut bacteria. We have noticed the commercial value of probiotics and hope to make them even more marketable by engineering the probiotic bacteria to produce vitamins. We would use the most common probiotic species, lactobacillius acidophilius. iGem teams at John Hopkins and Wash U in Saint Louis have already created similar vitamin-producing parts in yeast. We hope to adapt these part for prokayotes and to put them into now-vitamin-rich yogurt. Links to the wikis involving the yeast parts WashU John Hopkins

Beneficial bacteria is a very important bacteria to a strong digestive system. They digest foreign microbes, yeasts and candida every night. Some even release sodium butyrate, which is proven to cause cancer cells to suicide and specifically target cancer causing cells. The idea came up that we could engineer E. coli to produce these defense mechanisms since the problem is Beneficial Bacteria that produce sodium butyrate are limited and are killed when antibiotics are taken. Knowing E. coli produces by the billions, this could drastically help beat cancer causing cells.



Introduction to Synthetic Biology by Todd Eckdahl

Missouri Western University on February 18

MO Western Group Photo.jpg

View a pdf slideshow of our Introduction to Synthetic Biology


What did you achieve over the course of your semester?


What safety precautions did your team take? Did you take a safety training course? Were you supervised at all times in the lab?

CAPS Safety Manual Image.jpg Media:CAPS_Bioscience_Lab_Safety_Manual.pdf

MSDS Exchange Website

The Chemical Database Website at the University of Akron


Who worked on what?

Human Practices

What impact does/will your project have on the public?


What was your favorite team snack?? Have a picture of your team mascot?