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Hamsters Versus Bacteria

Bacteria on the top of the photo and a hamster on the bottom


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Transcript-Hamster Versus Bacteria
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Who would win in a competition, a hamster or bacteria? Place your bets! This episode tells the story of an epic science showdown. The stakes are high. Danielle Tullman-Ercek is a synthetic biologist trying to find a better way to make life-saving medicine. To do it, she’s engineering a bacteria cell to compete with a medicine-making hamster cell. Listen to find out what if Danielle and her bacteria have what it takes to win. What’s a hamster cell doing making medicine, anyway?!

More About Synthetic Biology!

Synthetic biology is a relatively new field of biology. Scientists believe it's opening new possibilities in how we produce materials and medicine.

But what is it? This video explains how synthetic biology works, with a company that's using the technology to engineer scents.

We have another episode about synthetic biology, and how it can be used to make biofuel.

Synthetic biology has also provided a new tool for artists! Lindsay helped produce this Studio 360 episode about how science and art are combining to "design" life.

Synthetic Biology News

Here's a few recent headlines about how scientists are using synthetic biology.

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The Mammoth Cometh

New York Times article explaining the story behind de-extinction

Midwestern farmers put new fertilizer alternative to the test

A new company is engineering a better fertilizer with microbes

Commandeering microbes pave way for synthetic biology in military environments

Microbes for national defense?

How Synthetic Biology Could Treat Celiac Disease

Eat bread again, thanks to engineered biology!

Synthetic biology presents an ethical tightrope

Design Your Own Bacteria

If you were to engineer a bacteria cell, what would it do? Dream it, design it, draw it! Send it to us at We'd love to share it with our listeners!

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