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Archive for the ‘bioengineering’ category: Page 120

Jul 25, 2016

How MIT’s new biological ‘computer’ works, and what it could do in the future

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

As I and others have shared for a while, Bio/ DNA Computing will be a major key piece of the Singularity picture.


MIT has taken a big step toward the ability to use engineered life-forms as a means of sensing, tracking, and even doing basic computing of information.

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Jul 24, 2016

Engineered bacteria deliver an anti cancer tumor toxin in mice before self-destructing

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

I never get tired of hearing more information on this research.


A synthetic genetic circuit programmed into an attenuated Salmonella enterica subspecies can be used to systemically deliver an anti-tumor toxin into mice with cancer. The circuit allows the bacterial cells inside a tumor to synchronously self-destruct by lysis, releasing the toxin directly in the tumor.

Researchers at the University of California San Diego and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have come up with a strategy for using synthetic biology in therapeutics. The approach enables continual production and release of drugs at disease sites in mice while simultaneously limiting the size, over time, of the populations of bacteria engineered to produce the drugs.

Continue reading “Engineered bacteria deliver an anti cancer tumor toxin in mice before self-destructing” »

Jul 22, 2016

Chinese team to pioneer first human CRISPR trial

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

(Medical Xpress)—A team of researchers at Sichuan University’s West China Hospital has announced plans to begin a clinical trial where cells modified using the CRISPR gene editing technique will be used on human beings for the very first time. They plan to edit genes in such a way as to turn off a gene that encodes for a protein that has been shown by prior research to slow an immune response and by so doing treat patients with lung cancer.

The CRISPR has been in the news a lot of late as scientists creep ever closer to using it as a means to treat diseases or to change the very nature of biological beings. China has been a leader in promoting such research on human beings—they were the first to use the technique to on human embryos.

This new effort is seen as far less controversial—a team in the U.S. is planning a similar study as soon as they can get regulators to greenlight their project. The Chinese team plans to retrieve T cells from patients that have incurable and then edit the genes in those cells. More specifically, they will be looking to disable a gene that encodes for a protein called PD-1—prior research has shown that it acts as a brake on an to help prevent attacks on healthy cells. Once the cells have been edited and inspected very carefully to make sure there were no editing errors they will be allowed to multiply and then all of the cells will be injected back into the same patient’s bloodstream. It is hoped that the edited cells will cause the immune system to mount a more aggressive attack on , killing them and curing the patient.

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Jul 20, 2016

Proteins that move DNA around in a bacterium are surprisingly similar to those in our own cells

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

Perfecting Synthetic biology — this definitely is advancement forward in the larger Singularity story.


In both higher organisms and bacteria, DNA must be segregated when cells divide, ensuring that the requisite share of duplicated DNA goes into each new cell. While previous studies indicated that bacteria and higher organisms use quite different systems to perform this task, A*STAR researchers have now found a bacterium that uses filaments with key similarities to those in multicellular organisms, including humans.

Robert Robinson from the A*STAR Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology has a long-standing interest in what he calls the “biological machines” that move DNA around when cells divide. He and his co-workers had gleaned from gene sequencing analysis that there was something distinctive about the DNA-moving machinery in the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis.

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Jul 20, 2016

Synthetic biology used to limit bacterial growth and coordinate drug release

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

Beautiful.


Researchers at the University of California San Diego and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have come up with a strategy for using synthetic biology in therapeutics. The approach enables continual production and release of drugs at disease sites in mice while simultaneously limiting the size, over time, of the populations of bacteria engineered to produce the drugs. The findings are published in the July 20 online issue of Nature.

Continue reading “Synthetic biology used to limit bacterial growth and coordinate drug release” »

Jul 20, 2016

Musings on Synthetic Biology and Crop Disease Resistance

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, food, robotics/AI

Why Plants? Part III – Rise of The Plant Machines by Orlando de Lange.

Everyone talks about the rise of the robots. What about the rise of the “Vegetation/ Plant Machines?”


In part 3 of our series on plant synthetic biology, Orlando de Lange (@SeaGreenODL) of The New Leaf blog introduces how synbio approaches are being used to develop novel disease resistant crops, overcoming some of the challenges faced by monoculture farming.

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Jul 19, 2016

‘Living hip’ grown in lab genetically engineered to stop arthritis

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

Arthritis sufferers have been offered new hope after scientists grew a ‘living hip’ in the lab which not only replaces worn cartilage but stops painful joints returning.

Researchers in the US have used stem cells to grow cartilage in the exact shape of a hip joint while also genetically engineering the tissue to release anti-inflammatory molecules to fend off the return of arthritis.

The idea is to implant the perfectly shaped cartilage around the joint to extend its life before arthritis has caused too much damage to the bone.

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Jul 18, 2016

‘Green’ electronic materials produced with synthetic biology

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, computing, nanotechnology, solar power, sustainability

Biowire.


Researchers led by microbiologist Derek Lovely say the wires, which rival the thinnest wires known to man, are produced from renewable, inexpensive feedstocks and avoid the harsh chemical processes typically used to produce nanoelectronic materials.

Lovley says, “New sources of electronic materials are needed to meet the increasing demand for making smaller, more powerful electronic devices in a sustainable way.” The ability to mass-produce such thin conductive wires with this sustainable technology has many potential applications in electronic devices, functioning not only as wires, but also transistors and capacitors. Proposed applications include biocompatible sensors, computing devices, and as components of solar panels.

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Jul 18, 2016

Gas sensors ‘see’ through soil to analyze microbial interactions

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

Can serve many uses such as geneology, etc. However, the bigger advancement will be with criminal/ legal investigations.


Rice University researchers have developed gas biosensors to “see” into soil and allow them to follow the behavior of the microbial communities within.

In a study in the American Chemical Society’s journal Environmental Science and Technology, the Rice team described using genetically engineered bacteria that release methyl halide gases to monitor microbial gene expression in samples in the lab.

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Jul 16, 2016

Silicon Valley Entrepreneurs Aim To ‘Hack’ the Brain

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, chemistry, cybercrime/malcode, neuroscience

Woo and other entrepreneurs are using fasts and other tricks to “hack” their brain chemistry like they would a computer, hoping to give themselves an edge as they strive to dream up the next billion-dollar idea. Known by insiders as “biohacking,” the push for cognitive self-improvement is gaining momentum in the Silicon Valley tech world, where workers face constant pressure to innovate and produce at the highest levels.

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