EUGLOH Supporting Young Scientists

Identifying New Ways to Diagnosis Endometriosis, Prevent Neurological Disease and Maintain an Ethical Approach to Their Work

Between the UPSaclay iGEM team’s EndoSeek and the LU iGEM team’s Cure-Li, young EUGLOH scientists have demonstrated an exceptional capacity to transform their education and research solutions to some of the world’s greatest medical challenges. And through a joint initiative to reflect on the ethical implications of their research, these young scientists have also demonstrated their capacity to think in terms of Global Health.

Paris_Lund Figure 1a: iGEM GO Paris-Saclay 2021 Team, Figure 1b: iGEM GO Paris-Saclay & Lund Teams in Paris during the Jamboree

Endometriosis is a gynaecological disease that causes pain and infertility and affects 10% of women worldwide. Several members of the iGEM GO Paris-Saclay 2021 student team were able to present “EndoSeek” – their project for diagnosing endometriosis using synthetic biology approaches – at the 2022 EUGLOH Summit held at Université Paris-Saclay.


Figure 2: Team GO Paris-Saclay presented their project in EUGLOH Summit 2022

The iGEM, International Genetically Engineered Machine, is an international synthetic biology competition created in 2003 by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Synthetic biology consists of assembling biobricks (genes, RNA, viruses, etc.) in a chassis (a living organism) to solve a given problem. Each year, iGEM teams develop a wealth of ingenuity to overcome environmental, health and research problems.

Winner of the 2021 competition’s Gold Medal and Best Inclusivity Award, EndoSeek is a project to detect endometriosis through a simple blood test. It is led by the iGEM GO Paris-Saclay 2021 team, which is made up of a dozen students from various fields of study, from Bachelor 1 to Master 2, from the Orsay Faculty of Sciences, the ESPCI and the École du Louvre.

During the Annual Summit, the EndoSeek team from UPSaclay was also able to proudly present its partnership with the iGEM team from Lund University, which aimed at considering the ethical implications of developing a health research project from scratch. The Swedish student team is developing a project on probiotics, “Cure-Li”, to prevent neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. The two teams asked themselves questions about how to bring such diagnostic projects to patients, patient associations or health professionals (doctors, surgeons, gynaecologists...), how it impacts them and if the proposed solution would suit them. All these reflections led them to rethink and modify their scientific projects order to find an optimal balance between meeting the scientific needs of the laboratory and the human needs of the field.


Figure 3: Students from UPSaclay and LU that collaborated this year about ethics and iGEM (here in Amsterdam to film the video)

Since the beginning, EUGLOH has supported this Franco-Swedish partnership and the thoughtful reflection of its scientists-in-the-making A big thank you to the EUGLOH community!

Please take a look at the websites, articles and videos that have been created by these two teams to present their projects.

Stelina Loiodice, Eve Do Espirito Santo, Amiel Abettan & Mathieu Nairabezefor iGEM GO Paris-Saclay 2021 team, Project EndoSeek

For more information regarding the partnership of the iGEM teams from UPSaclay and LU, please watch this video: