Standards for plant synthetic biology: A common syntax for exchange of DNA parts

Nicola J. Patron*, Diego Orzaez, Sylvestre Marillonnet, Heribert Warzecha, Colette Matthewman, Mark Youles, Oleg Raitskin, Aymeric Leveau, Gemma Farré, Christian Rogers, Alison Smith, Julian Hibberd, Alex A R Webb, James Locke, Sebastian Schornack, Jim Ajioka, David C. Baulcombe, Cyril Zipfel, Sophien Kamoun, Jonathan D G JonesHannah Kuhn, Silke Robatzek, H. Peter Van Esse, Dale Sanders, Giles Oldroyd, Cathie Martin, Rob Field, Sarah O'Connor, Samantha Fox, Brande Wulff, Ben Miller, Andy Breakspear, Guru Radhakrishnan, Pierre Marc Delaux, Dominique Loqué, Antonio Granell, Alain Tissier, Patrick Shih, Thomas P. Brutnell, W. Paul Quick, Heiko Rischer, Paul D. Fraser, Asaph Aharoni, Christine Raines, Paul F. South, Jean Michel Ané, Björn R. Hamberger, Jane Langdale, Jens Stougaard, Harro Bouwmeester, Michael Udvardi, James A H Murray, Vardis Ntoukakis, Patrick Schäfer, Katherine Denby, Keith J. Edwards, Anne Osbourn, Jim Haseloff

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Inventors in the field of mechanical and electronic engineering can access multitudes of components and, thanks to standardization, parts from different manufacturers can be used in combination with each other. The introduction of BioBrick standards for the assembly of characterized DNA sequences was a landmark in microbial engineering, shaping the field of synthetic biology. Here, we describe a standard for Type IIS restriction endonuclease-mediated assembly, defining a common syntax of 12 fusion sites to enable the facile assembly of eukaryotic transcriptional units. This standard has been developed and agreed by representatives and leaders of the international plant science and synthetic biology communities, including inventors, developers and adopters of Type IIS cloning methods. Our vision is of an extensive catalogue of standardized, characterized DNA parts that will accelerate plant bioengineering.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-19
Number of pages7
JournalThe New phytologist
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2015


  • Cloning
  • DNA assembly
  • Genetic syntax
  • GoldenGate
  • Synthetic biology
  • Type IIS restriction endonucleases

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