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Engineering    2016, Vol. 2 Issue (2) : 225-229
Research |
Sachsenmeier Peter1,2,()
1. Hertford College, University of Oxford, Oxford OX1 3BW, UK
2. International Innovation Center, Hankou University, Wuhan 430212, China
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仿生学(模仿生物特殊本领的学科) 以及合成生物学,将和过去50 年的硅芯片一样与工程开发、工业发展产生紧密联系。化学工业已经将白色生物技术应用于新工艺、新材料和资源的可持续利用中。合成生物学也已经应用到第二代生物燃料的发展中,并利用特制的微生物或生物制催化剂获取太阳能。而仿生学在制药、处理工程以及DNA 存储领域的市场潜力是巨大的。“登月计划”(ProjectMoonshot) 已经明确把医疗和新材料作为关注点,一场始于美国的创造大量新分子的竞争已经开始。本文首先概述了当前的一些项目,接下来探讨了代码工程(code engineering) 及其影响,包括脱氧核糖核酸(DNA) 人工合成、信号分子以及生物回路。除此之外,还探讨了涉及人造食物链和食物的仿生学前沿——合成代谢,以及原材料生物工程。这些研究将给生物学带来新思考。生物工程将和今天的数字化技术一样驱动创新。本文讨论了生物工程,特别是碳基生物燃料的应用和细胞饰变的技术与风险。大数据、分析学和海量存储将是未来的发展方向。虽然合成生物学在未来50 年将和当今的数字化一样普遍且具有革新能力,但是目前它的应用和影响力还处在初级阶段。本文采用了将生物工程发展分为五个阶段(DNA 分析、生物回路、最小基因组、原始细胞、异源生物学)的普遍分类方法,阐述了其对安全与保障、工业发展以及生物工程和生物技术作为跨学科领域发展的影响,同时讨论了伦理问题及公众对仿生学和合成生物学结果的公众讨论的重要性。


Bionics (the imitation or abstraction of the “inventions of nature) and, to an even greater extent, synthetic biology, will be as relevant to engineering development and industry as the silicon chip was over the last 50 years. Chemical industries already use so-called “white biotechnology” for new processes, new raw materials, and more sustainable use of resources. Synthetic biology is also used for the development of second-generation biofuels and for harvesting the sun's energy with the help of tailor-made microorganisms or biometrically designed catalysts. The market potential for bionics in medicine, engineering processes, and DNA storage is huge. “Moonshot” projects are already aggressively focusing on diseases and new materials, and a US-led competition is currently underway with the aim of creating a thousand new molecules. This article describes a timeline that starts with current projects and then moves on to code engineering projects and their implications, artificial DNA, signaling molecules, and biological circuitry. Beyond these projects, one of the next frontiers in bionics is the design of synthetic metabolisms that include artificial food chains and foods, and the bioengineering of raw materials; all of which will lead to new insights into biological principles. Bioengineering will be an innovation motor just as digitalization is today. This article discusses pertinent examples of bioengineering, particularly the use of alternative carbon-based biofuels and the techniques and perils of cell modification. Big data, analytics, and massive storage are important factors in this next frontier. Although synthetic biology will be as pervasive and transformative in the next 50 years as digitization and the Internet are today, its applications and impacts are still in nascent stages. This article provides a general taxonomy in which the development of bioengineering is classified in five stages (DNA analysis, bio-circuits, minimal genomes, protocells, xenobiology) from the familiar to the unknown, with implications for safety and security, industrial development, and the development of bioengineering and biotechnology as an interdisciplinary field. Ethical issues and the importance of a public debate about the consequences of bionics and synthetic biology are discussed.

Keywords Bionics      Synthetic biology      Bio-engineering      Biological sensors      Biofuels      Bio weapons      Virtual evolution      Protocells      Xeno cells      Economic significance      Industry 5.0      Germany      China     
通讯作者: Sachsenmeier Peter     E-mail:
最新录用日期:    发布日期: 2016-07-01
Peter Sachsenmeier
Peter Sachsenmeier. Industry 5.0—The Relevance and Implications of Bionics and Synthetic Biology[J]. Engineering, 2016, 2(2): 225-229.
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