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Archive for the ‘bioengineering’ category

Oct 20, 2019

Tennessee researchers join call for responsible development of synthetic biology

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, food, genetics, policy

Engineering biology is already transforming technology and science, and a consortium of researchers across many disciplines in the international Genome Project-write is calling for more discussion among scientists, policy makers and the general public to shepherd future development. In a policy forum article published in the October 18 issue of Science, the authors outline the technological advances needed to secure the transformative future of synthetic biology and express their concerns that the implementation of the relatively new discipline remains safe and responsible.

Two researchers with the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture are co-authors on the piece titled “Technological challenges and milestones for writing genomes: requires improved technologies.” Neal Stewart and Scott Lenaghan with the UTIA departments of Plant Sciences and Food Science, respectively, join Nili Ostrov, a Ph.D. research fellow in genetics at Harvard Medical School, and 18 other leading scientists from a number of institutions and disciplines, in outlining a potential timeline for the development of what they call transformative advances to and society.

Stewart and Lenaghan are the co-directors of the UT Center for Agricultural Synthetic Biology (CASB). Formed in 2018, Stewart says CASB is the first synthetic center in the world aimed specifically at improved agriculture. A professor of plant sciences in the UT Herbert College of Agriculture, Stewart also holds the endowed Racheff Chair of Excellence in Plant Molecular Genetics. Lenaghan is an assistant professor in the Department of Food Science who also holds an adjunct position in the UT Mechanical, Aerospace, and Biomedical Engineering (MABE) Department.

Oct 19, 2019

The ‘unbelievable journey’ of CRISPR, now on Netflix

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, ethics, genetics

Mankind’s ability to edit the fabric of human life has led to scientific upheaval, global debate, and at least one international incident. Now, it’s coming to Netflix.

Unnatural Selection,” a four-part docuseries debuting Friday, dissects the stories, science, and ethics behind genome editing, following academics, biohackers, and patients as they move through a brave new world made possible by technologies like CRISPR.

We recently spoke with co-directors Joe Egender and Leeor Kaufman about how the series came to be and how it frames the sprawling story of human genetic engineering. This transcript has been lightly edited for clarity.

Oct 16, 2019

In-Silico Clinical Trials — Virtual Bodies For Real Drugs — Dr. William Pruett — University of Mississippi Medical Center — ideaXme — Ira Pastor

Posted by in categories: aging, bioengineering, biotech/medical, DNA, futurism, genetics, health, life extension, neuroscience, science

Oct 10, 2019

Biology Really May Be Our Future

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, computing, singularity

Many of us are fascinated by our various computing devices — our smartphones, our smart watches, and an ever-growing array of smart devices. What we sometimes forget is that we are biological creatures (at least, until The Singularity), and that even though biology as a discipline has been around much longer than computing, biology may yet supersede it.

If the 20th century was the era of computers, the 21st century may be the era of biology. And the two may even merge. Hello, synthetic biology and biological computing!

Last week SynBioBeta hosted The Global Synthetic Biology Summit, “where tech meets bio and bio meets tech.” People were urged to attend “to see how synthetic biology is disrupting consumer products, food, agriculture, medicine, chemicals, materials, and more.”

Oct 9, 2019

How Close Are We to Harnessing Synthetic Life?

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, genetics, health

Scientists are exploring how to edit genomes and even create brand new ones that never existed before, but how close are we to harnessing synthetic life?
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Scientists have made major strides when it comes to understanding the base code that underlies all living things—but what if we could program living cells like software?

Continue reading “How Close Are We to Harnessing Synthetic Life?” »

Oct 9, 2019

Bio-Mimetic Real-Time Cortex Project — Whole Brain Emulation — Dr. Alice Parker — University of Southern California — ideaXme — Ira Pastor

Posted by in categories: big data, bioengineering, complex systems, driverless cars, drones, electronics, engineering, information science, neuroscience, robotics/AI

Oct 9, 2019

Cervical cancer ‘cure’ closer with gene-editing breakthrough, scientists say

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, genetics

Queensland researchers say they can cure cervical cancer in mice using gene editing technology and are now working towards human trials.

Oct 7, 2019

‘Next industrial revolution’: How synthetic biology will transform manufacturing and improve sustainability

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biological, sustainability

To create sustainable cities, we need to use synthetic biology.

Oct 6, 2019

China Grows Cotton Plant on the Far Side of the Moon in Biological First

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biological, space

China has broken new lunar ground, successfully growing cotton on the moon for the first time. The experiment was part of the Chang’e 4 project, in which China is exploring the far side of the moon with a lander. This is the same lander that recently discovered a mysterious gel-like substance on the moon’s surface.

The cotton plant was one of several organisms encased in a mini biosphere weighing just 2.6 kilograms (5.7 lbs) with a pressure of 1 atmosphere which was aboard the lander. The organisms experienced an environment largely similar to that on Earth, however, they did have to contend with both space radiation and microgravity.

In an interview with engineering magazine IEEE Spectrum, project leader for the experiment Xie Gengxin explained more about the challenges of growing plants in the restricted environment. “The weight of the Chang’e-4 probe demanded that the weight [of the experiment] can’t exceed three kilograms,” he said. That’s why it was important to select the biological samples in the experiment carefully.

Oct 5, 2019

Dr. Kelly Drew — Institute of Arctic Biology — University of Alaska — Human Hibernation Biotech — ideaXme — Ira Pastor

Posted by in categories: aging, bioengineering, biotech/medical, cryonics, genetics, health, life extension, neuroscience, science, space travel
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