Synthetic Biology News

MIT Engineers Create Synthetic Cells to Isolate Genetic Circuits

November 17, 2016

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Engineers Create Synthetic Cells to Isolate Genetic Circuits

Engineers from MIT have developed a way to isolate genetic circuits within individual synthetic “cells,” preventing the circuits from disrupting each other. Synthetic biology allows scientists to design genetic circuits that can be placed in cells, giving them new functions such as producing drugs or other useful molecules. However, as these circuits become more complex, […]

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Yale Researchers Create a 21st Amino Acid

December 16, 2013

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Researchers Discover a Way to Make Proteins Not Found in Nature

Using bacteria, Yale researchers rewrite most of the genetic instructions that encode all 20 amino acids, creating a specific 21st amino acid. Yale researchers have discovered a targeted way to make proteins not generally found in nature by expanding the information encrypted in the genetic code. Working with bacteria, the Yale team rewrote most of […]

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Synthetic Biology Circuits Perform Logic Functions and Remember the Results

February 11, 2013

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Synthetic Biology Circuits

Researchers at MIT have developed new synthetic biology circuits that combine memory and logic. MIT engineers have created genetic circuits in bacterial cells that not only perform logic functions, but also remember the results, which are encoded in the cell’s DNA and passed on for dozens of generations. The circuits, described in the Feb. 10 […]

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Complex Synthetic Biology Circuit Can Detect Four Different Molecules

October 9, 2012

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biological-complex-circuit

Synthetic biologists design circuits using genes as interchangeable parts, allowing them to perform new functions, such as sensing environmental conditions. However, the overall complexity that can be achieved in such circuits has recently been limited by the difficulty in assembling genetic components that don’t interfere with each other. Researchers have been trying to use proteins […]

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Newly Designed Transcription Factors Can Bind to DNA and Turn on Specific Genes

August 3, 2012

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new transcription factors that can bind to DNA and turn on specific genes

A new study from MIT and Boston University scientists describes a new method of using zinc fingers to design transcription factors for nonbacterial cells and provides new genetic components for synthetic biology. For about a dozen years, synthetic biologists have been working on ways to design genetic circuits to perform novel functions such as manufacturing […]

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Medusoid, A Tissue-Engineered Jellyfish with the Ability to Swim

July 23, 2012

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researchers reverse engineers a jellyfish with the ability to swim

After thoroughly studying jellyfish propulsion, including the arrangement of their muscles, how their bodies contract and recoil, and how fluid-dynamic effects help or hinder their movements, a team of scientists tissue-engineered a jellyfish with biomimetic propulsion from chemically dissociated rat tissue and silicone polymer. Pasadena, California — When one observes a colorful jellyfish pulsating through […]

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Using DNA and Bacteriophages as Rewritable Memory Storage

May 22, 2012

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dna-rewritable-memory

Synthetic biologists have been able to encode a kind of rewritable memory directly into DNA, after seeking ways to use biological data-storage systems effectively. This would be the fundamental function of any kind of digital circuitry that synthetic biologists hope to integrate into living cells. The researchers, led by Drew Endy of Stanford University in […]

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