Others are chemical firms that have invested in fermentation techniques to mass-produce various materials. The result is that Japan is quietly becoming a global leader in the use of industrial biotechnology in business sectors as disparate as commodity plastics and health care. “Japan could be a game changer in the global biotechnology industry,” says Tomohiro Fujita, CEO of the biotech firm Chitose Group and a member of a five-person committee advising the Japanese government on biotechnology.
by Katsumori Matsuoka, special to C&EN | September 28, 2019
They need new techniques, inputs, and equipment that can safely grow massive numbers of cells from cows, chickens, and fish. And to compete with traditional meat, as well as plant-based alternatives, they need to make products that are easy on the wallet and the palate. Decide what to call it Start-ups and activists promoting the nascent industry haven’t even settled on the most basic of points: how to talk about the new meat.
by Melody M. Bomgardner | October 21, 2018
Now, a team of researchers from Costa Rica, Denmark, and the U.K. reports an antivenom cocktail made of human recombinant antibodies capable of neutralizing black mamba venom in mice (Nat. Comm. 2018, DOI: 10.1038/s41467-018-06086-4). The antibodies were discovered using phage display, the technology awarded with half of the 2018 Nobel Prize in Chemistry announced earlier today.
by Tien Nguyen | October 03, 2018
., aimed at setting the parameters for ethical use of the groundbreaking genomic technique. Her template for the proceedings was a meeting of scientists that took place in 1975 down the coast at the Asilomar Conference Center near Monterey. There, the pioneers of biotech agreed to stop laboratory work with recombinant DNA until they could reach a consensus on how and where experiments could be pursued safely.
by Rick Mullin | August 27, 2018
Homology’s gene-editing technique relies on recently discovered variants of adeno-associated viruses rather than on CRISPR. AAVs induce homologous recombination in a cell’s genome to swap out an old piece of DNA for a new one. The goal is to treat genetic blood and eye diseases. The financial terms are not disclosed, but Novartis previously invested in Homology as part of the firm’s $83.5 million series B funding.
by Ryan Cross | November 20, 2017
He has been responsible for a few of synthetic biology’s milestones, including the development of one of the most commonly used genome-assembly techniques. The Gibson method uses chemical means to join DNA fragments, yielding pieces thousands of bases long. For two fragments to connect, one must end with a 20- to 40-base sequence that’s identical to the start of the next fragment.
by Katherine Bourzac | July 10, 2017
The biotech firm Azitra, a 2014 spin-off from Yale University, has developed a skin-soothing recombinant microbe based on Staphylococcus epidermidis, a normal part of the skin microbiome. Azitra’s bacteria express filaggrin, a structural protein often missing or underexpressed in people who have skin problems such as eczema, explains Travis Whitfill, a Yale School of Medicine research scientist and Azitra’s chief science officer.
by Marc S. Reisch | May 08, 2017
“About 20 years ago, one of our experts developed a method for making recombinant peptide because natural collagen is of inconsistent quality,” Ban recalls. Fujifilm never produced recombinant collagen peptide for use on film because it’s too expensive. But the research helped the company enter regenerative medicine, with Fujifilm initially focusing on tissue engineering scaffolds.
by Jean-François Tremblay | April 17, 2017