Questions and Answers about Synthetic Biology

"Everyone is a writer" program aims to promote the sharing of knowledge and learning together. There are some answers about the synthetic biology from this campaign.

Q1: What is synthetic biology?

A: Yunjun ZhaoSynthetic biology is a research area that integrates multiple methodologies from various disciplines to create new biological parts or to redesign existing biological systems, then finally to create new life forms. Learn More

Kevin ArcosAccording to NIH National Human Genome Research Institute, synthetic biology is a field of science that involves redesigning organisms for useful purposes by engineering them to have new abilities. Synthetic biologists can create microorganisms harnessed for bioremediation to clean pollutants from our water, soil and air;  create modified rice to produce beta-carotene, a nutrient usually associated with carrots, that prevents vitamin A deficiency; engineered Yeast to produce rose oil as an eco-friendly and sustainable substitute for real roses that perfumers use to make luxury scents. Learn More

Pratistha SatpathySynthetic Biology aims to harness the emergent properties of the central dogma for biotechnological and human use.This description of the field is comprehensive.Synthetic biology research is at the the forefront of engineering the three tiers of biological systems. Learn More

Elizabeth Gabriela Macedo FloresSynthetic biology is a field of science that involves redesigning organisms for useful purposes by engineering them to have new abilities. Synthetic biology researchers and companies around the world are harnessing the power of nature to solve problems in medicine, manufacturing and agriculture. Learn More

Raghuvandhanan K SSYNTHETIC BIOLOGY - An interdisciplinary area which combines biological science and engineering. In broad terms, it aims to create, redesign or fabricate biological components and systems that are not (Generally) present in Nature. Learn More

Edna DiosdadoSynthetic biology is a multidisciplinary area of research that seeks to create novel biological parts, devices, and systems, or to redesign systems that are already found in nature. It draws ideas from engineering, biology, bioinformatics, mathematics, chemistry, and biotechnology. Learn More

Q2: Who are the pioneers of synthetic biology, and what contribution did they make?

A: Pratistha SatpathyThe roots of synthetic biology can be traced to a landmark publication by Francois Jacob and Jacques Monod in 1961.Insights from their study of the lac operon(biological :"on-off" switch) in E.coli led them to postulate the existence of regulatory circuits or molecular networks for cellular regulation. Learn More

Dickens HallFrancois Jacob and Jacques Monod are two of the pioneers of synthetic biology. They found the existence of regulatory circuits that underpin the response of a cell to its environment in 1961 and promoted the first synthetic biology publication that enabled scientists to assemble new regulatory systems from molecular components. Learn More

Elizabeth Gabriela Macedo FloresGeorge Church, born in 1954, is a geneticist, molecular engineer and chemist, and a renowned professor of genetics at Harvard University (USA). He is considered a pioneer in synthetic biology, a discipline that aims to create synthetic organisms and DNA in the laboratory. Learn More

Raghuvandhanan K SHere are some Pioneers of Synthetic Biology and their Contributions: Learn More

Q3: What are the major applications and advances in Synthetic biology?

A: Raghuvandhanan K SSynthetic Biology offers a wide range of Applications and Advances. Here are some: Health - Gene editing, Personalized medicine, Tissue engineering and biologics replacing chemically-synthesized drugs. Example: Engineered Bacteria for treatment of Colon cancer. Learn More

Elizabeth Gabriela Macedo FloresToday, the human being seeks to solve specific problems, improve the quality of life and satisfy needs in a sustainable way, that is, without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Learn More

Pratistha SatpathyThe potential applications of the synthetic biological systems are in bioprocess technology to achieve the production of high-value compounds with vital biological activities.It also has its applications in the development of industrial bioprocesses. Learn More

Lily HonsmanSynthetic Biology provides innovative approaches for engineering new biological systems or re-designing existing ones for multiple purpose. For instance, biologists can now produce small molecules in a short time using synthetic biology approaches, which can address shortages of key compounds quickly. Learn More

Q4: What is synthetic biology’s role in combating COVID-19?

A: Kevin ArcosTo halt the global pandemic, solutions are needed to rapidly construct the SARS-CoV-2 genome, genome variants, genome parts for use in the generation of a vaccine and customized oligonucleotide probes and primers for better detection of the virus. Learn More

Pratistha SatpathyI am stating here four roles /applications of synthetic biology ,which can help in combating COVID-19: The recently identified novel human coronavirus, referred as severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (CoV-2) is the causative agent of the ongoing pandemic of COVID-19. Learn More

Elizabeth Gabriela Macedo FloresBeyond vaccines and antibodies, synthetic biology will play an important role in the long-term fight against COVID-19 and other potential pandemic pathogens. A mutation in COVID-19 could render a vaccine ineffective and cause a new outbreak. Learn More

Q5: How COVID-19 will affect the development of synthetic biology? 

A: Pratistha Satpathy: 1. The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed life-threatening gaps in our ability to conduct the widespread community testing needed to mount an effective public health response. Learn More

Elizabeth Gabriela Macedo FloresThe Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the National Institutes of Health have invested in synthetic biology in the hope of designing vaccines for COVID-19. A vaccine developed through synthetic biology would be highly scalable to millions and would work without the need for refrigeration, which is ideal for global applications. Learn More

Q6: Why is Synthetic Biology Important?

A: Neha MittalSynthetic Biology is a strategy or part of science through which researchers can redesign or recreate living organism or molecules for a superior life purposes. It is exceptionally significant procedure in light of the fact that by redesigning and engineering we are combining the advantageous properties of different organisms and making them useful for combating deadly diseases like COVID-19, Cancer or HIV. Learn More

Raghuvandhanan K SIn recent years, Synthetic biology has gained a lot of attention because of it potential and what the field can deliver.

Synthetic biology help scientists understand how genetic parts work together, and then to combine them to produce useful applications. There is a lot of Importance, I have broadly classified based on different fields in Biology. Learn More

Q7: What are the moral and ethical concerns of synthetic biology?

A: University of Rochester iGEM 2020 Team UteRusSynthetic Biology is a multidisciplinary research that aims to produce novel biological systems, organisms, and biological parts, or to improve a system that already exists in nature. Although synthetic biology has made great contributions to science and our daily life, it also raises many ethical and moral concerns. Two of them are discussed here. Learn More

Raghuvandhanan K SThe 21st Century is often said as the Era of Biotechnology, Given the current pandemic situation, the above statement seems to imply. One of the prominent and emerging fields in Biotechnology is “Synthetic Biology”, which aims to apply engineering principles to the creation of biological systems.  Learn More

Q8: What are the leading companies in synthetic biology?

A: Lily Honsman: I think GenScript is one of the leading companies in synthetic biology. This company came into my radar a few years ago when it launched a plasmid sharing website, MolecularCloud, a platform that I have been perennially interested in and currently participate. The reason for considering it one of the leading synthetic biology companies lies on three aspects. Learn More

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