Applications of Biotechnology: History and Prospects

Archived Webinar
Nov 4, 2010
The vast majority of the early societal benefit and commercial success in biotechnology arose from expressing single genes in bacteria and mammalian cells, to manufacture pharmaceuticals.

AIChE Journal Highlight: Non-Viral Gene Delivery for Cancer Therapy

Journal Highlight
As researchers gain more insight into the molecular basis of cancer cell genesis, proliferation, and metastasis, gene therapy has emerged as a promising strategy for cancer treatment. In particular, the non-viral delivery of therapeutic nucleic acid...

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 patient. But that may be about to change. A professor of materials science has created an "electronic tattoo" that can monitor various body functions

Study Points to Therapeutic Cancer Vaccine

December 30, 2016

Researchers at the University of Michigan have had a significant breakthrough in creating a customized therapeutic vaccine for treating colon and melanoma cancer tumors in mice.

Medical Potential for Temporary Nanoparticle Tattoos

September 26, 2016

Tests by researchers at Baylor College of Medicine have recently shown that nanoparticles modified with polyethylene glycol selectively affect specific areas of the immune system, showing potential

Nanodiamonds Show Promise for Cancer Drug Delivery

January 27, 2015

Researchers at the National University of Singapore (NUS) have discovered that nanodiamonds can be used to effectively deliver chemotherapy drugs and eliminate chemoreisistant cancer cells.

Nanoparticle Drug Delivery Inspired by Blood Cells

December 30, 2014

Aaron C. Anselmo of University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), presents his work on nanoparticle drug delivery systems inspired by human blood cells in an AIChE poster session.

Google Aims to Spot Cancer and Heart Disease with Wristband

November 5, 2014

Google has announced that one of the special projects it's working on entails creating a wristband that will perform diagnostic tests on the wearer, such as looking for indicators of cancer and heart disease, among other ailments.

Important Breakthrough in DNA Computing

October 28, 2014

DNA computing occurs at the intersection of molecular biology, genetics, and biochemistry, and it promises an impressive leap in computing power if successful.

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 them completely.

Electrospun Nanofiber Films for Biomimicry [On Location]

December 18, 2013

Conventional asymmetrical membrane structures cause severe mass transfer limitations, so future membrane designs need to focus on mimicking the functionality and specificity of biological membrane systems.

Plasma Synthesis of Metal Sulfide Nanocrystals [On Location]

December 10, 2013

Metal sulfide nanocrystals have typically been synthesized in hot solvent-solution phase systems that bring with them a host of quality and productivity issues. Current work at the University of Minnesota seeks to avoid these problems by utilizing a non-thermal plasma reactor and deposition system.

Chemical Engineer Develops Coating that Repels Mosts Liquids

1 Comment
January 17, 2013

From simple daily uses such as keeping clothes stain free to boosting the efficiency of ocean-going vessels, a new nanoscale coating developed at the University of Michigan promises a wide range of applications, thanks to its ability to repel mosts liquids.

December 2012 CEP Preview

December 10, 2012

This month CEP looks at biological chemical engineering, focusing on the intersection of nanotechnology and biology. In this month's preview your also have access to the full text of "Easy Ways to Improve Energy Efficiency."

A Hitchhiker’s Guide to Drug Delivery [On Location]

1 Comment
November 6, 2012

A novel drug delivery technique has nanoparticles thumbing for a ride aboard red blood cells. This promising work comes from researchers at the University of California, Santa Barbara, who presented their findings at the 2012 Annual Meeting in Pittsburgh.

Breakthrough in Organic Fuel-Cell Catalysts

October 9, 2012

One of the current problems with fuel cells is the catalyst that helps convert sources of stored energy such as hydrogen and oxygen into electrical energy.

Slideshow: 6th Annual ICBN

July 27, 2012

Nikala Gigliotti, an undergraduate in biomolecular engineering at the Milwaukee School of Engineering, attended the 6th annual International Conference for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (ICBN) at the University of California at Berkeley and shares photo highlights.

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 lighter than Styrofoam.

SBE’s 6th International Conference on Bioengineering and Nanotechnology

February 21, 2012

This year's meeting, Bionanoscience and Bioengineering for Translational Medicine, will foster greater knowledge exchange and collaboration in the areas of bioengineering and nanotechnology – two interdisciplinary fields that cut across and integrate various areas in science, engineering, and medicine to create breakthroughs in biomedical research.

Nano-Paint Could Create Nighttime and Radar Invisibility

December 9, 2011

Carbon nanotubes are the blackest material known and they absorb a broad spectrum of light. This creates the potential for using nano-coatings to perfectly cloak objects in the dark of night and from radar at any time of day.

Conductive Nanotube Cables Could Advance Renewable Energy and More

September 21, 2011

Researchers at Rice University have announced a nanotechnology success that could play a significant role in making renewable energy more practical and could contribute to many electrical applications where weight is a factor. The breakthrough: researchers have created carbon nanotubes that are approaching electrical conductivities seen in metal wires, a goal that has been pursued since the 1980s.

Nanofiber Designed to Combat Heart Attacks

1 Comment
September 1, 2011

Northwestern University researchers have created a nanomaterial that could help the body generate new blood vessels to potentially prevent heart attacks, the top killer of both men and women in the U.S.

Thomas Abraham on Nanotechnology at 2011 AIChE Northeast Regional Conference at the Chem Show

August 18, 2011

Tom Abraham of Innovative Research and Products (IRAP) has produced the Nanotechnology Workshops and Conference at the Chem Show every other year since 2005. This year will be the first time this conference will be produced in conjunction with AIChE. Conference Organizer Lauren Deitch had a chance to sit down and chat with Dr. Abraham at AIChE's offices in New York. You can watch the interview in the video panel to the right.

Lithium Ion Batteries the Diameter of a Human Hair

August 5, 2011

After years of research, Rice University researcher Pulickel Ajayan and his team have created a battery/supercapacitor hybrid that packs an entire lithium ion energy storage device onto a single nanowire.

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 formed of chains of carbon atoms that fold onto themselves to create a tube that is capable of conducting electricity and mimics the surface of natural tissue.

Chemical Engineers Design Nanoparticles to Target Cancer Tumors

May 2, 2011

Chemical engineers at MIT have designed a nanoparticle that could one day be used to target cancerous tumors, reports MIT News. The particle, which could be used to deliver drugs to tumors, takes advantage of the fact that tumors generally exhibit higher acidity that healthy tissue. Like other drug-delivering nanoparticles, the researchers' creation is covered in a polymer that keeps it from degrading in the bloodstream. These particles, however, drop their protective polymer cloak once exposed to the higher acidity of a tumor. Underneath the protective coating is another layer that can penetrate the tumor. The particles are described in detail in the journal ACS Nano.

Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria Fought with Nanoparticles

April 7, 2011

IBM researchers are developing nanoparticles that kill bacteria by poking holes in them. The hope is that bacteria will be less successful at developing a resistance to these types of drug, leaving doctors with a powerful tool in the fight against antibiotic-resistant microbes.

Allergy to Cheap Jewelry? Nanoparticles May Make It a Thing of the Past

1 Comment
April 6, 2011

Nickel-induced dermatitis is more common than it sounds. In fact, about fifteen percent of the US population is allergic to the nickel found in many everyday objects, such as jewelry, watches, metal household items, and coins. The allergy itself is due to nickel salts formed by contact-induced perspiration, and, of course, isn’t helped by the wide availability of cheap disposable jewelry.

Nanoparticle versus Cancer

February 22, 2011

Whenever cancer is discussed, a familiar phrase is often heard: the earlier it's caught, the better the chances of survival. Early detection is the next best thing to avoiding cancer altogether, and now researchers are hoping to have discovered a safe, new method of detection that relies on a newcomer in the fight for early detection: the nanoparticle. More specifically, MIT's Tech Review reported last week that researchers are beginning early-stage clinical trials on infrared-emiting nanoparticles that they hope will prove effective in detecting early-stage melanoma.


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