multidisciplinary team at The Department of Biomedical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University, have designed a synthetic eukaryotic genome. The project, known as Sc2.0, resulted in a highly modified Saccharomyces cerevisiae genome which was ~8% smaller, with 1.1 megabases inserted, deleted or altered.


An open-source framework, called BioStudio, was used to design the genome. It is hoped that this development will enable further investigation into chromosome structure, function, and evolution.

“The starting point for the Sc2.0 genome sequence is the highly curated Saccharomyces cerevisiae sequence. The principles guiding Sc2.0 genome design balance a desire to maintain a “wild-type” phenotype while introducing inducible genetic flexibility and minimizing sources of genomic instability resulting from the repetitive nature of native yeast DNA.” One of the design features of Sc2.0 chromosomes are short recoded sequences within open reading frames, know as PCRTags. These are present to facilitate a PCR assay which can distinguish wild-type and synthetic DNA.

Read the full article, published in Science, here: