We would like to express our gratitude to everyone who has followed our team along the way on its iGEM adventure. We appreciate everyone's time, effort, and expertise in helping our group.

Team Members

Melissa Hendrén is one of the team co-leads to the Aalto-Helsinki team. She is head of the wet-lab team and involved in fundraising, collaborations with other teams, writing, synbio and travelling organisation.

Veera Kurki is one of the team co-leads to the Aalto-Helsinki team. She is head of the human practices, the social media team and chair of synbio. She is part of the wet-lab and involved in fundraising, collaborations, writing, social media and travelling organisation.

Diogo Dias is head of the dry-lab. He is involved in the data analysis of the project, blogpost writing and review as well as participating in the development of the promotion video.

Amna Gul is an active member of the wet-lab team. She contributes to the project in several ways, including through fundraising, collaborations, human practices, writing, and the production of a promotional video.

Lilith Heiland is head of the writing team and part of the wet-lab team. She is involved in fundraising, collaborations, human practices, promotion video, and travel organisation.

Zsófia Hesketh is head of the collaboration team and part of the wet-lab team. She is involved in writing, human practices, and travel planning.

Mari Keskiivari is head of the graphic design team and part of the wet-lab team. She is involved in writing, human practices, promotion video, social media, synbio, and travel organisation.

Anniina Könönen is head of the fundraising team and part of the dry-lab team. She is involved in collaborations, writing, synbio and travel planning.

Joose Lankia is head of the promotion video team and part of the dry-lab team. He is involved in collaborations, programming, writing, human practices, graphic design, and the social media team.

Hanna Nebelung is head of the programming team and part of the dry-lab team. She is involved in collaborations, and human practices teams.

Project Supervisors

Heli Viskari

Heli is one of the principal investigators of the Aalto-Helsinki 2022 iGEM team. Her help has been crucial throughout our iGEM journey, by being present throughout the ideation phase and giving us feedback of how to progress. Additionally, the laboratory space at Aalto University was provided by Heli, and Heli has helped us actively with orders throughout the summer - even contributing some of her own teaching budget to the iGEM team. Furthermore, she gave us instructions on some simple lab tasks to ensure biosafety measures are in place in our group's work. Thank you very much Heli for all the dedicated work that you have provided to our iGEM team!

Markus Linder

Markus is one of the principal investigators of the Aalto-Helsinki 2022 iGEM team. He guided us through the brainstorming process and gave feedback to our initial ideas encouraging us to consider the combination of our potential earlier ideas. Furthermore, he approved together with Heli the additional financial support from the teaching budget to our iGEM team. We are very grateful for the help and guidance we received from you, Markus..

Project Advisors

Sesilja Aranko

Sesilja is one of the advisors of the Aalto-Helsinki iGEM 2022 team. She has helped the team in the initial ideation phase giving us advice, but was also essential during the realisation of the project in the lab. Sesilja provided help during the construction of the bioreporter and also in the initial stage of the DARPin library and was essential for providing us with information of the presence both location wise and stock wise of lab equipment and chemicals. Additionally, the team thanks you, Sesilja, for helping us develop a schedule for our lab work.

Ville Paavilainen

Ville is one of the advisors of the Aalto-Helsinki 2022 iGEM team. His guidance was crucial throughout our ideation and brainstorming phase. We received valuable input from him throughout the ideation phase and also in setting up our lab protocols. Ville connected us to key contacts including Anja Paatero and Kah Ying Ng for checking our protocols for ribosome display. Additionally, he provided us lab space to work in to test our initial protocols. Ville, we thank you for your independable help in setting up the ribosome display.

Labratory Support

Mikael Hytti and Ulla Åhman

Mikael and Ulla are the lab technicians in the Department of Chemical Engineering of Aalto University. We thank both of them very much for showing us around and introducing us to the lab, explaining the safety regulations to us, as well as supplying us with needed equipment and chemicals throughout the summer.

Norman Adlung

Norman is a PostDoc at Aalto University and has provided us with the pET28a-sfGFP plasmid, which we used as the backbone for our bioreporter. We thank you very much, Norman, for providing us this essential plasmid.

Karoliina Laine

Karoliina is a research assistant at the Biomolecular Materials research group at Aalto University. She provided us with E. coli BL21, which was essential for the GFP targeting DARPin expression.

Kah Ying Ng

Kah Ying is a PhD student in the Battersby lab. She helped us setting up both the in vitro transcription and translation. Furthermore, she supervised our first try of the reaction to ensure that the protocol would run smoothly.

Tejas Somvanshi

Tejas is a doctoral candidate in the Biochemistry group under Silvan Scheller at Aalto University. He provided us E. coli BL21 cells to use for protein production and guided us through the challenges of GFP DARPin overexpression.

Consults and Project Support

Scientifc Consults

Christopher Jonkergouw

Christopher is a doctoral researcher in the Biomolecular materials research group at Aalto University. We were advised by him to rather target the AIP itself than the AgrC due to mutations the bacteria may accumulate, when in direct contact with the inhibitor.

Alexander Frey

Alexander was essential during the ideation of our topic. While we were presenting our potential topics to him searching for advice, he originally proposed DARPins during his feedback. Additionally, he has been helpful for general advice in laboratory methodology, when we were unsure on how to improve the dissolving of our AIP peptides.

Lars Paulin

Lars is a laboratory engineer in the Institute of Biotechnology at the University of Helsinki. He has explained to us which sequencing techniques would be best to use in order to separate our DARPins after ribosome display and sequenced them for us accordingly with BioPac. We acknowledge DNA Sequencing and Genomics Laboratory, Institute of Biotechnology, University of Helsinki for sequencing.

Anja Paatero

Anja is a research coordinator at the Institute of Biotechnology and helped us in the set-up of our ribosome display protocol. She recommended skipping the steps involving the plasmid, which both simplified the protocol and saved time.

Human practices support

Dr. Esko Kankuri, Heli Lagus and Milla Kallio

Esko is a lecturer in the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Helsinki. He provided us valuable information on current wound care management techniques and the wound care market. Furthermore, he facilitated our contact with clinicians in HUS that have experience and exposure to wound care to give us further information on this topic. Heli is a plastic surgeon at the Helsinki University Central Hospital, where Milla is also a vascular surgeon. Both gave us valuable insight into the treatment of chronic wounds. We thank all three of you for shedding light on the day-to-day practice of treating these wounds, how they impact our public health systems and where a solution like ours could fit into the market.

Entrepreneurial and organisational support

Jouni Lounasmaa

Jouni is the previous CEO of the Startup Foundation and he helped us considering the business side of our idea and recommended us to consider group dynamics and basic group structure in a startup.

Presentation coaching

The Science Basement

The science basement is a group of scientists that enjoy science communication on different levels. We were able to present our project to the public with the science basement and also post a blogpost on their blog “blogging science”. For both the presentation we received valuable feedback from Noemí Gutiérrez Valdésand Rita Turpin and for our blog post from Kenia Fita and Suvi Sundqvist.


Sami Jalil

Sami is one of the Phd mentors of the Aalto-Helsinki iGEM team. His help has been essential for the set up of our bioreporter. He reviewed with us the bioreporter and the integration of it into our plasmid. Furthermore, he provided us with the essential plasmid pET42b-HF-BE3 required for the expression of our GFP-DARPin, so that we could pass it to the Dresden iGEM team. We thank you, Sami, for the constant support that you showed our team.

Juuso Taskinen

Juuso is one of the PhD mentors of the Aalto-Helsinki iGEM team. He was essential in guiding us throughout our project by providing questions that made us think deeper and in more detail about our approaches. Additionally, Juuso was present to help with wet-lab questions that were too complicated for us to solve. We thank you very much for the impact you had on our project.

Ilse Kaaja

Ilse is one of the PhD mentors of the Aalto-Helsinki iGEM team. She has been very helpful during the beginning of the project, as she also has been a part of the Aalto-Helsinki iGEM team in 2019. We have got help with iGEM registry questions, and common questions we have had during our meetings with the mentors. We are very grateful for the support Ilse has given us during the project.

Rishi Banerjee

Rishi is one of the Phd mentors of the Aalto-Helsinki team. He was helpful in the beginning of the project for primer design. He provided online resources for primer design and annealing temperature calculations.

Aalto-Helsinki 2021

Thanks to the previous team for selecting the current team and giving us advice for how to proceed with iGEM. Each of our team members is very grateful to their personal mentors they could reach out to in moments of confusion and stress to receive guidance and help. Additionally, we really want to thank you for the guidance you gave us in bigger tasks like how to proceed with the fundraising, simple wet-lab tasks and storage questions as well as parts for the wet-lab, programming advice for the wiki and our webpage and contacts you passed on to our team like sponsors from the previous year. We are very grateful to the previous year's team for their wonderful help and establishing our team. We would have not met without you and we would have not gotten to where we are right now without you! Thank you Sally Chestnut, Emma Ryhänen, Anni Lindfors, Anniina Savolainen, Enrique de Dios Mateos, Iiris Pitko, Joanna Jagdeo, Rupesh Balaji Jayachandran and Vilma Jäämuru.

Sitsit, an academic table dinner with the Aalto-Helsinki team from 2021


We thank our sponsors for supporting our project: Aalto University (School of Chemical Engineering, School of Electrical Engineering, School of Engineering, School of Science), University of Helsinki (Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry, Faculty of Biological and Environmental Sciences and Faculty of Science), HiLIFE, Codex DNA, Geneious, Kemian teollisuus, TEK, Terkko Health Hub, ThermoFisher Scientific, VTT.