Archive for 'Synthetic biology' Category:

Synthetic biology
By David Fang: Tuesday 25th April, 2017

The synthetic biology revolution

Just as the industrial revolutions of the previous centuries were enabled by novel technologies such as the spinning jenny, steam engine, and transistor, the tools and techniques for engineering biological machinery, known popularly as synthetic biology, may shepherd in the next great wave of innovations ranging from clean water and energy production to novel therapies […]

Small Molecules
By Guest Author: Fabio Digiacomo: Monday 28th November, 2016

Indentification of small molecule drugs that could benefit from a synbio-based manufacturing process

Synthetic biology has been recognized as one of the most promising technologies that may impact our future and I, for one, believe that its potential applications are remarkable and incredibly diverse. In this series of articles I report the results of the work that I carried out as part of my internship at Cambridge Consultants.  […]

By Guest author: Ciara McCarthy: Wednesday 16th November, 2016

The story behind the gold medal winning project

Whilst the majority of students had long since escaped the labs and libraries of Cambridge for the summer, 10 intrepid students remained in the Plant Sciences department. We were a mixture of engineers and natural scientists taking part in iGEM – an international synthetic biology competition. Teams from universities across the world participate, building genetically […]

Small Molecules
By Guest Author: Fabio Digiacomo: Thursday 27th October, 2016

How to identify opportunity areas for synthetic biology in drug manufacture: a rational approach

In my previous article on synthetic biology, I briefly touched upon the general findings on the application of synthetic biology to small molecule drug manufacturing, obtained from my Cambridge University Master’s industrial placement project at Cambridge Consultants. In my research, one of the goals was to rationally identify opportunity areas for SynBio in drug manufacturing, […]

DNA strand
By Dr Sara Dodd: Wednesday 12th October, 2016

Top 10 things we learned at SynBioBeta SF 2016

Synthetic biology is a rapidly growing field and nowhere more so than in the San Francisco area. It is therefore not surprising that this is the arena for the main annual event in synthetic biology: SynBioBeta SF. This year the event attracted a record number of participants and exhibitors. James Hallinan and I packed our […]

Small Molecules
By Guest Author: Fabio Digiacomo: Wednesday 12th October, 2016

Synthetic Biology: innovative tool for an improved manufacture of small molecule drugs?

In the last few years, the life science sector has been taken by storm by what I like to call the “synthetic biology revolution”. Some believe synthetic biology is just a cooler and catchier way of referring to molecular biology/genetic engineering, others support the idea of it being a new and exciting discipline with a […]

By Guest author: Geoff Ma: Thursday 1st September, 2016

Standardising DNA – why bother?

Standardisation is everywhere. Standardisation has enabled rapid industrial development. Examples could include nuts and bolts in engineering, or even USB protocols in computing. These universally accepted standards provide the necessary platform to encapsulate tasks which are now seen as trivial. Almost inevitably, there has been a desire within the scientific community to standardise elements of […]

By Guest Author: Claire Restarick: Monday 15th August, 2016

Using low-cost, well-documented, open-source hardware for synthetic biology

Since our initial blog post, we’ve spent many hours finalising designs for our genetic assemblies, which are now in the process of being synthesised. Once these are complete, we will begin the challenging task of completing four rounds of experiments before our deadline in September. While our biologists are making significant headway in the lab, […]

By Guest Author: Michael Friedman: Thursday 28th July, 2016

Engineering a future for synthetic biology

Chloroplast engineering has the potential to revolutionise the field of synthetic biology. As the factory floor of the plant cell, the chloroplast can produce a variety of interesting compounds, with around 50X the efficiency of the rest of the cell. Its potential for biofuel and vaccine antigen production are especially relevant, with the current global […]

By James Hallinan: Friday 1st July, 2016

BioHackathon- engaging the next generation of synthetic biologists

Hackathons have become a popular activity across a variety of disciplines as a way to engage the community to solve problems and challenges in a short space of time.  They are perhaps most often seen in IT, with teams of coders competing to develop products across all sorts of applications and sectors.  We spent four […]


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