August 4, 2009

Synthetic Biology… Are you Ready ???

Filed under: Bioinformatics,Computational Biology — Biointelligence: Education,Training & Consultancy Services @ 8:39 am
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I came accross a “partially” new term today. Had heard about it, but didn’t know what does it exactly do. Yes, The new term is SYNTHETIC BIOLOGY. Thought to share it with you people. Here is a small article on Synthetic Biology and its prospects.

Synthetic biology, the synthesis of biological components and devices and the redesign or creation of new life forms, has enormous potential. Today, many scientists are not content merely to analyze and understand life. They want to create it. Today, synthetic biology is still in its infancy. The job market and the availability of training opportunities reflect the field’s immaturity. But the field is growing and opportunities are emerging for talented scientists with an interdisciplinary focus who are willing to look at things in new ways.

Synthetic biology enables researchers to tackle a huge and diverse range of applied problems: building a cell with the smallest possible genome; synthesizing proteins with extra amino acids–more than the 20 found in nature; using bacteria to produce medicines previously too complex to synthesize; even decomposing living organisms into standard, off-the-shelf ‘biobricks’ that can be assembled on demand. According to scientists

“You truly have to be a jack of all trades, when working with Synthetic Biology”.

It involves concepts of Systems biology, biochemistry, synthetic chemistry, microbiology, and enzymology, along with evolutionary, bioinformatics and what not. Above all, synthetic biology “requires a new way of thinking about biology: the idea that cells are machines and they can be rebuilt the way that electrical engineers now design circuits and instruments.

Synthetic Biology : As a Career

Scientists interested in training in the field should join a lab with expertise in synthetic biology. If you can’t find such a lab, join a lab that has expertise complementary to yours and can provide you with the skills you need. Search for scholarships and research labs and tell people that you are interested in applying either your biological knowledge to the mathematical techniques or the computational mathematical techniques to their biology projects and that you want to give a synthetic biology flavor.

Entering such a multidisciplinar field along invokes many challenges, some many concern etical issues also. Despite these challenges, most experts see synthetic biology as a safe career bet for a talented scientist.

So, people are you ready to explore ????