Fiat Lux : light4track
Lighting up the future of agriculture: FIAT LUX, a biosynthetic tool to track bacteria
Abstract: Food security is an immense challenge nowadays, particularly as crops are further endangered each year by new bacterial phytopathogens. The current tools to study pathogens are not efficient. Our project, FIAT LUX, based on an improved version of the luxCDABE operon ilux, aims at simplifying the use of luminescence as a reporter gene, notably for in vivo infection studies. It enables the tracking of luminescent bacterial spread in tissues, without having to sample or kill the host. Our team has focused the proof of concept on the soft rot disease in potatoes, caused by Dickeya. FIAT LUX is a promising tool to better understand this infection helping to combat it and would contribute towards building more sustainable agricultural practices. After iGEM, we will extend the use of FIAT LUX to as many host-pathogen relationships as possible, and it may also be useful in the future to study beneficial symbiotic interactions.