Team:UC Davis/Team


Our Sponsors

Start a Family

Got a favorite BioBrick? Check our our process for expanding basic parts into part families.


View our judging criteria for iGEM 2011 here.

The Team

The undergraduate portion of the IGEM 2011 team at UC Davis is currently comprised of four UC Davis students, two of whom are carried over from the team that brought home a Gold at the iGEM Jamboree last year. Candidates for this years iGEM team were selected based on their academic achievement, previous work and laboratory experience, interviews with faculty and responses to a questionnaire about iGEM and synthetic biology.

Keegan Owsley

Major: Biomedical Engineering.
Year: Senior.
iGEM Experience: 2 years.
Specialty: Team leader. Code-guy.
Musical Expertise: None.

Autobiography: Hello! This is my second year being on an iGEM team, and it feels good to be back. We hit the ground running fast this year, and we've gotten a lot done - but the science never stops! Working on iGEM has been an excellent opportunity as an undergrad to participate in self-driven research. As other igemmers probably understand, I spend most of my "free" time in lab - but on the off chance I'm not there, you can often find me online, playing Minecraft, surfing reddit, and hanging out with friends!

Tim Fenton

Major: Cell Biology.
Year: Senior.
iGEM Experience: 3 years.
Specialty: Photo-guy. Wiki Designer.
Musical Expertise: 17 years of piano, plays about a dozen other instruments.

Autobiography: Hey there I'm Tim. I really enjoy doing iGEM because it is one of the best undergrad research opportunities and I love working in the field of synthetic biology. If I'm not working in lab (almost never) I enjoy cycling on the country roads around Davis and playing tennis.

Aaron Heuckroth

Major: Microbiology, Classics.
Year: Senior.
iGEM Experience: 1 year.
Speciality: Bacteria Geek, Fundraiser/PR Guy.
Musical Expertise: 7 years of electric guitar. Metal, prog-rock, whatever!

Autobiography: I started this summer feeling like the odd man out -- before iGEM, I had no experience with any kind of engineering, and I was the only member of the team not to have taken advanced math courses. My focus on microbiology ended up coming in handy more than once, and I've picked up a lot from my team members, Marc, and the other members of the Facciotti lab, and I plan to explore the field of synthetic biology further in graduate school. If I had free time left over from both majors, I would spend it playing guitar, cooking delicious food and toying around with the occasional video game.

Nick Csicsery

Major: Biological Systems Engineering.
Year: Junior.
iGEM Experience: 1 year.
Speciality: Wetlab Powerhouse, "The New Guy."
Musical Expertise: Several years of electric guitar. Classic Rock.

Autobiography: Hi I'm Nick. iGEM this year has been my first lab experience and I have really enjoyed learning how to work in a research lab. I've learned quite a bit about how a project can be taken from an initial idea to a finished product. I've been most amazed by seeing how much a small group of people can get done when they all diligently work together. In my spare time I like long distance running and hiking.

The Advisors

Two UC Davis professors and one graduate student provide valuable insight, laboratory space, and academic clout to the undergraduate portion of the team.

Mike Starr

Position: Graduate Student Advisor
Department: Biomedical Engineering
Major: Systems Biology
Year: Graduate, 1st Year
Degree: B.S. in Biology
iGEM Experience: 1 year.
Musical Expertise: "Clapping."

Linh Huynh

Position: Graduate Student Advisor
Department: Biomedical Engineering
Major: Systems Biology
Year: Graduate, 2nd Year
Degree: B.S. in Computer Science
Musical Expertise: Unknown.

Dr. Marc Facciotti

Position: Primary Investigator. The Boss.
Department: Biomedical Engineering
Degree: Ph.D. in Biophysics.
iGEM Experience: 3 years.
Musical Expertise: Plays drums in the local jazz band "We 'Bones."

Facciotti Lab Wesbite

Dr. Ilias Tagkopoulos

Position: Co-Primary Investigator
Department: Biomedical Engineering, Computer Science
Degree: Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering
iGEM Experience: 2 years.
Musical Expertise: Clarinet.

Tagkopoulos Lab Website

Contact Us



(530) 334-8159