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What is the Registry
Get & Give (& Share). The philosophy behind the Registry and what makes it a great resource for synthetic biology.
The Registry is a continuously growing community collection of biological parts that can be mixed and matched to build synthetic biology devices and systems. Founded in 2003 at MIT, the Registry is part of the synthetic biology community's efforts to make biology easier to engineer. It provides a resource of available biological parts that have been user-tested and characterized for users developing synthetic biology projects.
The Registry provides these resources for the continued growth of synthetic biology in education, academic research, and new industry. The Registry is part of the iGEM Foundation.
The Registry is an open community that runs and grows on the "Get & Give (& Share)" philosophy. Users get parts, samples, data, and tools from the Registry to work on their synthetic biology projects. They'll give back to the Registry the new parts they've made, as well as data and experience on new and existing parts. Finally, users will share experience and collaborate in the Registry's open community through their wikis, the forums, and other social tools.
Why use the Registry
The Catalog of Parts and Devices
You can browse the Registry's Catalog of Parts & Devices where parts and devices are organized by various criteria, including function, chassis, and standards. You can also use the Registry search tools to find parts by descriptors, or specific part names. Parts range from foundational such as promoters, terminators to unique and interesting like gas vesicle parts, pigment parts, wintergreen smelling parts, etc.
Documentation & Characterization
There is already a wealth of information about each part and device, telling you how they work and how to use them. Many of the Registry parts and devices have been user-tested and characterized, so that you can focus on building your system instead of researching each necessary component.
The Registry Repository
Floating bacteria, Bacto-Blood, Cambridge pigment parts: iGEM teams and labs continue to add interesting and novel parts, devices and systems to the Registry. Physical samples are also sent to the Registry, added to the Registry Repository and tested for their quality (sequence, gel results, etc). If you've found an interesting part, and a sample of it is available, you can request it from the Registry. You don't have to make it from scratch!
The BioBrick Standard
The standard in "standard parts" ensures compatibility between parts, allowing them to be assembled together creating new longer and more complex parts, while still maintaining the structural elements of the standard. This idempotent characteristic means that any newly composed part will adhere to its standard without need for manipulation, and can be used in future assemblies without issue. Most of the parts on the Registry adhere to the BioBrick Standard, so their samples can easily be assembled, this allows the engineer to focus on design instead of assembly.
The Registry is an open community where information and experience is shared. Since the Registry uses the wiki format, users can easily make or add changes, including more information on a part's characteristics, writing about their experience with a device, etc. The Registry also has a forum and comments system, which is used as a place for discussion.