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Archive for the ‘biological’ category: Page 165

Sep 19, 2016

Researchers address the importance of measurement in synthetic biology

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biological, government, sustainability

Dr Michael Adeogun and Dr Max Ryadnov from the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) have written an expert view for Bio-Based World News on the importance of measurement science in synthetic biology, highlighting the vital work that NPL has already undertaken in this field.

Synthetic biology is a growing field which seeks to develop solutions to major global challenges, such as the generation of sustainable and affordable materials and chemicals, and the use of bio-engineered organisms as products. The UK aims to achieve a £10bn market in synthetic biology by 2030.

Since the publication of the government-commissioned Synthetic Biology Roadmap in 2012, the UK has become the second largest investor in synthetic biology, having developed a national network of research centres, doctoral training programmes and knowledge facilities to drive growth in the commercial sector.

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Sep 12, 2016

Tiangong-2: Second space lab

Posted by in categories: biological, physics, satellites

China’s 2nd spacelab launches next week. Now, I wonder how QSS will be leveraged given the note on new communication capabilities as well as other types of experiments that can be conducted.


Chinese space agency is all set to launch its second spacelab Tiangong-2 next week. Long March 2F rocket will lift up the spacelab and both the entities have been transported to the launch pad located at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, yesterday. Tiangong-2 will test life support systems and refueling technology for its 60 ton modular space station.

Tiangong-2 will be placed in an orbit of 393 kilometers above the Earth and it will help in studying fundamental physics, biology, fluid mechanics in microgravity, space science and will monitor Earth from space. In addition, it has the capability to measure the topography of the oceans with very high precision which will enable scientists to study Earth’s gravity field.

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Sep 12, 2016

China’s plan to step up to Silicon Valley

Posted by in categories: biological, economics, mobile phones, quantum physics

No surprise at all. My 13 year old nephew wants to be the next Steve Jobs. Along with learning Quantum & Biology, I will need to suggest that he should focus on China as a possible future.


China’s provincial city of Hangzhou is buzzing with tech activity, with officials aiming to open thousands of tech enterprises by the end of the decade. As Tara Joseph reports, the city is brimming with tech office parks and tech products, though truly innovative concepts are still missing.

They’re calling it Asia’s Silicon Valley In the city of Hangzhou about 100 miles south of Shanghai… you can order your dinner on your phone without a waitress… Or pay for a haircut with a quick swipe. …everyday signs of the start-ups that officials hope can one day drive the economy. (SOUNDBITE) (English) TARA JOSEPH, REUTERS CORRESPONDENT, SAYING: “Here its easy to run into people talking about building a new app — or planning a new tech venture — and every where you go in this city there are new office parks sprouting called tech zones and massive office blocks going up. The scale is absolutely mind boggling.” Hangzhou’s officials have a plan to open a thousand high tech enterprises… employing three HUNDRED thousand people by the end of the decade. It started here with tech giant Alibaba — now a multi-billion dollar company listed in New York led by rock star CEO Jack Ma. In its wake, a new wave of entrepreneurs have emerged — like Li Hongwei.

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Sep 10, 2016

IBM Patents Technology That Can Add Night Vision To Your Glasses

Posted by in categories: biological, genetics

IBM wants to give people night vision capabilities, and they are doing it using Google Glass. This patent “tricks” the eyes with red light in order to increase visibility when in a low light environment.

Upon entering a dark room, human eyes obviously take time to adjust in order to see clearly. That’s because there are two types of photoreceptors in our eyes — the rods and the cones. Rods are responsible for letting humans see in the dark; however, it takes around 30 minutes for our rods to fully adjust to the darkness.

Night vision is a very complicated biological process, but it seems that we may be able to tweak and enhance it, and we can do so without using genetic manipulation or any other equally invasive and transformative method. In fact, all we may need is glasses.

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Sep 10, 2016

Is Evolution Over? Synthetic Biology Anticipates Nature’s Next Steps

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biological, evolution, genetics, sustainability

Synthetic biology is essentially an application of engineering principles to the fundamental molecular components of biology. Key to the process is the ability to design genetic circuits that reprogram organisms to do things like produce biofuels or excrete the precursors for pharmaceuticals, though whether this is commercially viable is another question.

MIT’s Jim Collins, one of the founders of synthetic biology, recently explained it to me as putting the engineering into genetic engineering.

“Genetic engineering is introducing a gene from species A to species B,” he said. “That’s the equivalent of replacing a red light bulb with a green light bulb. Synthetic biology is focused on designing the underlying circuitry expressing that red or green light bulb.”

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Sep 8, 2016

Genetic “extinction” technology rejected

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biological, existential risks, genetics, government

OAHU, HAWAI’I — As thousands of government representatives and conservationists convene in Oahu this week for the 2016 World Conservation Congress, international conservation and environmental leaders are raising awareness about the potentially dangerous use of gene drives — a controversial new synthetic biology technology intended to deliberately cause targeted species to become extinct.

Members of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), including NGOs, government representatives, and scientific and academic institutions, overwhelmingly voted to adopt a de facto moratorium on supporting or endorsing research into gene drives for conservation or other purposes until the IUCN has fully assessed their impacts. News of the August 26 digital vote comes as an important open letter to the group is being delivered.

Scientists and environmental experts and organizations from around the globe have advocated for a halt to proposals for the use of gene drive technologies in conservation. Announced today, a long list of environmental leaders, including Dr. Jane Goodall, DBE, genetics professor and broadcaster Dr. David Suzuki, Dr. Fritjof Capra, entomologist Dr. Angelika Hilbeck, Indian environmental activist Dr. Vandana Shiva and organic pioneer and biologist Nell Newman, have lent their support to the open letter: “A Call for Conservation with a Conscience: No Place for Gene Drives in Conservation.” The letter states, in part: “Gene drives, which have not been tested for unintended consequences, nor fully evaluated for ethical and social impacts, should not be promoted as conservation tools.”

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Sep 7, 2016

Surprisingly, Plant Microbes May Be An Answer To Our Growing Food Needs

Posted by in categories: biological, food, sustainability, transportation

By Sveta McShane: Organizations as diverse as the United Nations and Monsanto are in agreement that we need to double our food production globally by 2050 to feed the world’s population…

Awaken

But our current agricultural process is one of the biggest contributors to global warming. It emits more greenhouses gases than all the world’s cars combined and is a major consumer and polluter of our precious water resources.

Continue reading “Surprisingly, Plant Microbes May Be An Answer To Our Growing Food Needs” »

Sep 7, 2016

Tapping the unused potential of photosynthesis

Posted by in categories: biological, food, sustainability

Scientists from the University of Southampton have reengineered the fundamental process of photosynthesis to power useful chemical reactions that could be used to produce biofuels, pharmaceuticals and fine chemicals.

Photosynthesis is the pivotal biological reaction on the planet, providing the food we eat, the oxygen we breathe and removing CO2 from the atmosphere.

Photosynthesis in plants and algae consists of two reactions, the light-reactions absorb light energy from the sun and use this to split water (H2O) into electrons, protons and oxygen and the dark-reactions which use the electrons and protons from the light reactions to ‘fix’ CO2 from the atmosphere into simple sugars that are the basis of the food chain. Importantly, the light reactions have a much higher capacity than the dark reactions resulting in much of the absorbed being wasted as heat rather than being used to ‘fix’ CO2.

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Sep 1, 2016

Genetic ‘Extinction’ Technology Rejected

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biological, existential risks, genetics

OAHU, HAWAI’I —(ENEWSPF)–September 1, 2016. As thousands of government representatives and conservationists convene in Oahu this week for the 2016 World Conservation Congress, international conservation and environmental leaders are raising awareness about the potentially dangerous use of gene drives — a controversial new synthetic biology technology intended to deliberately cause targeted species to become extinct.

Members of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), including NGOs, government representatives, and scientific and academic institutions, overwhelmingly voted to adopt a de facto moratorium on supporting or endorsing research into gene drives for conservation or other purposes until the IUCN has fully assessed their impacts. News of the August 26 digital vote comes as an important open letter to the group is being delivered.

Scientists and environmental experts and organizations from around the globe have advocated for a halt to proposals for the use of gene drive technologies in conservation. Announced today, a long list of environmental leaders, including Dr. Jane Goodall, DBE, genetics professor and broadcaster Dr. David Suzuki, Dr. Fritjof Capra, entomologist Dr. Angelika Hilbeck, Indian environmental activist Dr. Vandana Shiva and organic pioneer and biologist Nell Newman, have lent their support to the open letter: “A Call for Conservation with a Conscience: No Place for Gene Drives in Conservation.” The letter states, in part: “Gene drives, which have not been tested for unintended consequences, nor fully evaluated for ethical and social impacts, should not be promoted as conservation tools.”

Read more

Aug 31, 2016

A New Way to Create Synthetic Proteins Could Lead to More Flexible Designs

Posted by in categories: biological, nanotechnology, singularity

Nice advancement for the nanomaterials space particularly as we look at ways to improve machines, devices, BMI, living buildings or other living structures, etc. Definitely advances efforts around Singularity.


Proteins perform a myriad of functions essential for life. They also make up important and useful biological materials, for example spider silk, which is exceptionally strong but still flexible.

The ability to design completely new proteins would help scientists create nanomaterials that, like spider silk, have a specific microstructure that confers useful properties.

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