Biological Engineering

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Society for Biological Engineering (SBE)

SBE is a global technological community that promotes the integration of engineering with biology and realize its benefits through bioprocessing, biomedical, and biomolecular applications. SBE provides opportunities for interaction of engineers and scientists, develops products and services bring value to the broad biological engineering community, and infuses awareness of biological engineering among all functions and activities of AIChE.

Forest Bioproducts Division (FBP)

The Forest Bioproducts Division promotes knowledge sharing and networking on topics dealing with products obtained from forest resources and other lignocellulosic materials.

Electric Fields Interrupt Cancer Cell Division

March 8, 2012
Surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation are the best known methods for treating cancer, but in this TEDTalk (see video at right), Bill Doyle discusses a new methodology: tumor...

Best Innovations of 2010

January 6, 2011
Towards the end of the year, I typically read quite a few top 10, 20, or 50 lists of music, books, or movies. One list that I read, however, was more unique – Time Magazine’s “50...

World's Lightest Material Unveiled

July 18, 2012
German researchers unveiled to the public the world's lightest material, which they call Aerographite. The material weights just 0.2 mg per cubic centimeter, making it 75 times...

DNA Goes Digital

February 19, 2013
If our next leap in data storage is to a DNA-based system, chemical engineers and bioengineers will find themselves at the heart of computer science and tasked with preserving the...

LEGOs + DNA = FUN TIMES

October 6, 2010
Having just read an article in the New York Times on Dr. J. Craig Venter, I can’t stop thinking how cool synthetic biology is. Whether you are an engineer or a scientist, these...

New Device Harvests Movement to Generate Energy

September 4, 2014
A new small device that relies on nanotechnology successfully generates electric current from simple vibrations. Its creators look to relieve the load on batteries or eliminate...

New Nanotechnology Helps Heal Heart Tissue

May 24, 2011
Researchers at Brown University have used carbon nanotubes to create a patch that can regenerate heart tissue in the lab, according to a report in Technology Review. The patch is...

Creating an Internet for Genomic Information

December 24, 2014
A group called the Global Alliance for Genomics and Health (known as the Global Alliance ) wants to maximize the use of genetic data by creating a responsible way to share it with...

Replacing Body Parts—NOVA Science Now

February 16, 2011
In this fantastic piece entitled Replacing Body Parts on PBS’s NOVA series, Neil deGrasse Tyson explores new research in the field of human organ transplantation. He notes that a...

Tattoos as Diagnostic Devices

August 15, 2011
There's not much sexy—let alone unobtrusive—about many of today's medical monitoring devices, given the many wires and electrodes that are often needed to collect data from a...

Stem-Cell Therapy Eye Treatment Proves Safe

January 26, 2012
Good news for stem-cell therapy: a paper reports that two subjects in a clinical trial have each safely received injections of embryonic stem cells into an eye.

New Kidney Transplant Method Uses Stem Cells

March 13, 2012
Applications for stem cells seem endless. These versatile cells can be used to study development and disease, and they also have the ability to replace damaged cells and treat...

Termites: Homeowner Scourge or Biofuel Savior?

July 18, 2011
An unwanted house pest and suburban scourge, suddenly the termite has been accidentally and disasterously rehabilitated by science. Hyperbole? Termite control professionals don't...

Printing A Human Kidney

December 27, 2011
Atala, whose team developed the first lab-grown organ, explains how his lab's 3-D printing technology is used to create human organs. In addition to the bladder that was...

How Viruses Hijack RNA to Hide in the Body

February 12, 2015
Ever wonder how some viruses, such as the common herpes virus, manage to hide in the body for years at a time, often going undetected? Viruses can lurk deep inside cells for years...

CEP: News Update

May
2015
News Update
Metabolic Engineering Delivers Low-Cost Hydrogen; Metal-Free Catalyst Recharges Zinc-Air Batteries; Aluminum Could Take Charge of the Battery Market; New Desalination Membrane Resists Chlorine; and more

Singapore: An Emerging Leader in Biomedical Sciences

October
2007
SBE Special Section
Niki S. C. Wong, Miranda G. S. Yap
With a heavy investment in biomedical research— particularly the $330 million to build Biopolis in 2003— Singapore is seeing the fruits of its labor blossom.

CEP: News Update

April
2015
News Update
Chameleon-Like Material Changes Color On Demand; New Genes for an Old Microbe Make Statins Cheaper; A Sweet Approach to Breaking Down Cellulose; New Catalyst Pushes Lignin Up on the Value Chain; and more.

CEP: AIChE Journal Highlight - Layer-by-Layer Approach Enables Customizable Medication Therapy

April
2015
Journal Highlight
In the April AIChE Journal Perspective article, “Layer-by-Layer Approaches to Staging Medicine from Surfaces,” Paula T. Hammond of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology describes her research on a method that creates layers of thin films stacked on top of one another. Each layer contains a different therapeutic, which is incorporated into the thin film via one of several mechanisms (e.g., charge, hydrogen bonding, or other complementary interaction). This technique is useful for drug therapy in applications such as bone regeneration.

CEP: News Update

March
2015
News Update
Cheap and Abundant Potassium Outperforms Precious Metal Catalyst; Engineering Bioethanol without the Food Gap; Supercomputers Identify Optimal Zeolites; Synthetic Biology Pushes Gene Therapy Forward; and more.

CEP: News Update

December
2014
News Update
Fossil Fuels Inspire Clean-Hydrogen Catalyst; Organic Solar Cells Heat Up; Biomass Waste Gets Upgraded; New Technique Puts Catalysts on the Right Track; and more.

CEP: News Update

November
2014
News Update
AIChE’s Initial Placement Survey: Where is the Class of 2014?; Producing More Ethanol with Less-Sensitive Microbes; Stretchable Patch Provides First-Class Health Monitoring; New Drug Capsule Takes the Ouch Out of Injections; Hybrid Device Combines a Solar Cell and a Battery.

CEP: News Update

October
2014
News Update
Tiny Assembly Line Builds Organic Molecules One Side Group at a Time; Engineered Microbes Synthesize Bio-Propane; Buckyballs Boost Organic Solar Cell Efficiency; Masquerade Ball: Squid Skin Inspires a New Material; A Microbial Approach to Pain Management; Phase Change: Liquid Battery for Grid-Scale Storage; and more.

CEP: News Update

September
2014
News Update
The Science Behind the Breakthrough Ebola Treatment; Polymers Crystallize into Zeolite-Like Structures; Magnetic Attraction: New Material Guides Fluid Flow; MoS2 Pushes Graphene Aside for Fast DNA Sequencing; and more.

CEP: News Update

July
2014
News Update
Nanoparticles Detect Sulfur Content in Crude Oil; Putting Waste Heat to Work; New Process Prints Personalized Drugs; EPA to Cut CO2 from Power Plants; Microbes Convert Biodiesel Waste into Valuable Chemicals

CEP: News Update

October
2013
News Update
Crunching the Numbers on Grid-Scale Storage; Microbes Convert Waste into Electricity; Solar Cells Make the Right Connection; Engineered Tissue Mingles with Blood Vessels; and more.

CEP: Catalyzing Commercialization - Living Plants: One-Stop Shop for Protein Manufacturing

July
2014
Catalyzing Commercialization
Chemical manufacturing facilities housing green plants perform all of the processes formerly handled by stainless steel equipment. Production is energy efficient, fueled by photosynthesis, as living plants secrete raw materials (e.g., high-purity spider silk proteins) for downstream production and processing. Thanks to Wisconsin-based ag-biotech startup PhylloTech, this surreal vision may not be so far-fetched.

CEP: News Update

May
2014
News Update
Stick-On Health Tracker Twists, Stretches, and Bends; No Corn Needed: Ethanol Is Produced from CO; Engineered Bacteria Turn Switchgrass into Jet Fuel; Reversing Evolution Promises Cheaper Pharmaceuticals; and more.

CEP: News Update

March
2014
News Update
Silicon Anode Gets a Fruity Makeover; New Anode Provides a Home for Plus-Sized Na+ Ions; A Flicker of Hope for Nonflammable Li-Ion Batteries; Bio-Inspired Glass Is Bendable; and more.

CEP: News Update

January
2014
News Update
Harmless Virus Helps Assemble Li-O2 Cathode for Batteries; A Sticky Solution for Tissue Engineering; Biopatch Catalyzes Bone Regeneration; Shape-Shifting Material Heats Up; and more

Fermentation Fundamentals: Brewing Bugs for Bioengineering

January
2014
Back To Basics
Sujata K. Bhatia
A fermentation process leverages live cells to manufacture a variety of products. Choosing the correct host cell, as well as the optimal production equipment and method, are the fundamental first steps of these complex processes.

CEP: News Update

December
2013
News Update
Made-to-Order Materials Move Forward; 3D Photonic Crystal Stands Up to the Heat; Battery Electrode Acquires Self-Healing Power; GHG Emissions Decline as Power Plants Switch to Natural Gas; and more.

CEP: News Update

November
2013
News Update
Genetically Engineered Yeast Consume Toxic Byproduct; New Device Performs Double Duty; Simulations Shine Light on Future Solar Materials; Closing the Voltage Gap; and more.

Algal Biofuels: The Process

March
2011
SBE Special Section
Al Darzins, Eric P. Knoshaug
The production of algal biofuels involves algae cultivation, biomass harvesting and dewatering, lipid extraction, and conversion to fuel.

CEP: News Update

July
2013
News Update
Inkjet-Printed Graphene Rolls Out; UV Treatment Improves Membrane Selectivity; Additive Sweetens the Prospects for Organic Electronics; Protective Coating Connects Electronics and Living Tissue; and more.

Algal Biofuels: The Backstory

March
2011
SBE Special Section
Arjun Gopalratnam
Increasing energy demand and dwindling energy resources have spurred interest in making transportation fuels from renewable sources such as microalgae.

CEP: News Update

May
2013
News Update
Artificial Organs Hot Off the Press; Biofuel Byproducts and Concrete Mix It Up; Squid Inspires Material for Medical Implants; Polymer Chains Line Up to Provide High Performance; Ribbons of VO2 and Graphene Enable Ultrafast Batteries; and more.

Introduction to Drug Delivery Technology

March
2013
SBE Special Section
John T. Santini, Jr.
Drugs can be administered by many routes, yet all emerging drug delivery technologies aim to improve drug efficacy, minimize side effects, and reduce the burden of care for patients and physicians.

Engineering Biodegradable Nanoparticles for Drug and Gene Delivery

March
2013
SBE Special Section
W. Mark Saltzman, Junwei Zhang
Engineered nanoparticles can deliver therapeutic agents to specifically targeted cells and then release those agents in a precisely controlled manner. Improved pharmacokinetic properties, reduced toxicity, and the ability to cross biological barriers are some of the key benefits of this approach.

CEP: Update

March
2013
News Update
Color-Shifting Fibers Take their Lead from Nature; Nanocapsules Target Cancer Cells without Harming Healthy Ones ; Graphene Straightens Out with Some Help from Copper; Silicon Made Easy for Batteries; and more.

Genetically Modified Crops

September
2005
Critical Issues
John Shave
Viewpoint #1 Regulate the Product, Not the Process by Gregory Conko Viewpoint #2 Not All Sugar & Spice

CEP: News Update

February
2013
News Update
Now Available: High-Performance Carbon Nanotube Fibers; Nanowire-Based Solar Cell Achieves Record Performance; Fireflies Share Their Light Tricks with LEDs; Tissue Adhesives Are Inspired by the Prickly Porcupine; New Coating Shields Against Nearly All Liquids; and more.

CEP: News Update

January
2013
News Update
Global Relationships Take Center Stage at the 2012 Annual Meeting; No Boiling Needed: Nanoparticles Convert Sunlight into Steam; Hydrogen Power Goes Mobile; Carbon Nanotubes Team Up with Graphene; New Process Brings Bendable Electronics Closer to Reality; and more.
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