Nov 22, 2010

Autodesk Helps Students Win Annual iGEM Synthetic Biology Competition

Winning Team Uses Autodesk Maya Software to Help Visualize Cellular Designs.

Autodesk is extending its design capabilities into synthetic biology, an exciting new field in engineering and design, by helping current and future synthetic biologists visualize their new creations.

Earlier this month, Autodesk sponsored the International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) competition, challenging undergraduate and high school students to design, create and test biological structures. The competition encourages students to create new synthetic biological structures that can potentially lead to scientific advancements, such as more effective, precisely targeted drugs; more precise diagnostic tools for diseases; and even “designer organisms” to perform specialized activities, such as eating pollution.

The grand prize–winning team from Slovenia -- together with four other winning teams, including the University of Cambridge -- used Autodesk Maya software to visualize their projects. This year Autodesk provided iGEM students with free licenses of Maya, the same software used by cell biology visualization studios, as well as film, television and game developers.