About BioBuilder

We are a public benefit organization that puts ongoing research questions into the hands of teachers and students to increase interest, engagement and understanding of science and engineering. Read more about us





If you'd like to carry out these experiments with your middle school students, request reagents here

Eau that Smell

Through hands-on laboratory work and interactive classroom sessions, you can put our most amazing technology (biology!) to work. After learning some of the tools and techniques for engineering cells, you will build and then measure a synthetic living system. In particular, you will modify a foul-smelling but harmless bacteria to make them look and smell like banana smoothies. You can’t drink these creations but you can use them to start imagining all that’s possible if we apply the living world to solve its problems.


  • how engineers and scientists differ in their approach to living things
  • to work with DNA to prepare it for experimentation
  • to genetically engineer cells to smell like bananas
  • to use microbiological techniques to culture bacterial cells
  • to measure the smell output of their engineered system
  • to explore the applications of this approach to other, real world challenges

Workflow for this experiment

Adobe Acrobat document [215.0 KB]
Print Print | Sitemap
© BioBuilder Educational Foundat