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Current Opinion in Biotechnology

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https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28528659/editorial-overview-energy-biotechnology
#1
EDITORIAL
Brian F Pfleger, Scott Banta
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
May 18, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28528086/cellulosic-ethanol-status-and-innovation
#2
REVIEW
Lee R Lynd, Xiaoyu Liang, Mary J Biddy, Andrew Allee, Hao Cai, Thomas Foust, Michael E Himmel, Mark S Laser, Michael Wang, Charles E Wyman
Although the purchase price of cellulosic feedstocks is competitive with petroleum on an energy basis, the cost of lignocellulose conversion to ethanol using today's technology is high. Cost reductions can be pursued via either in-paradigm or new-paradigm innovation. As an example of new-paradigm innovation, consolidated bioprocessing using thermophilic bacteria combined with milling during fermentation (cotreatment) is analyzed. Acknowledging the nascent state of this approach, our analysis indicates potential for radically improved cost competitiveness and feasibility at smaller scale compared to current technology, arising from (a) R&D-driven advances (consolidated bioprocessing with cotreatment in lieu of thermochemical pretreatment and added fungal cellulase), and (b) configurational changes (fuel pellet coproduction instead of electricity, gas boiler(s) in lieu of a solid fuel boiler)...
May 18, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28528169/editorial-overview-environmental-biotechnology
#3
EDITORIAL
Jan Roelof van der Meer, Man Bock Gu
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
May 17, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28505598/interlocked-dna-topologies-for-nanotechnology
#4
REVIEW
Julián Valero, Finn Lohmann, Michael Famulok
Interlocked molecular architectures are well known in supramolecular chemistry and are widely used for various applications like sensors, molecular machines and logic gates. The use of DNA for constructing these interlocked structures has increased significantly within the current decade. Because of Watson-Crick base pairing rules, DNA is an excellent material for the self-assembly of well-defined interlocked nanoarchitectures. These DNA nanostructures exhibit sufficient stability, good solubility in aqueous media, biocompatibility, and can be easily combined with other biomolecules in bio-hybrid nano-assemblies...
May 12, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28494275/synthetic-biological-approaches-for-rna-labelling-and-imaging-design-principles-and-future-opportunities
#5
REVIEW
Steven Pauff, Jamie M Withers, Iain Jw McKean, Simon P Mackay, Glenn A Burley
RNA is the most mercurial of all biomacromolecules. In contrast to DNA, where the predominant role is the storage of genetic information, the biological role of RNA varies; ranging from a template-based intermediary in gene expression to playing a direct role in catalysis. Their high turnover and metabolic lability makes the detection of specific sequences particularly challenging. This review describes the latest synthetic biological developments that enable the direct imaging of RNA both in vitro and in their native cellular environment...
May 8, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28494274/personalized-t-cell-mediated-cancer-immunotherapy-progress-and-challenges
#6
REVIEW
Michael T Bethune, Alok V Joglekar
Immunotherapies are yielding effective treatments for several previously untreatable cancers. Until recently, vaccines and adoptive cell therapies have been designed to target public tumor antigens common to multiple patients rather than private antigens specific to a single patient. Due to the difficulty of identifying public antigens that are expressed exclusively on tumor cells, these studies have yielded both clinical successes and serious immune-related adverse events. Multiple avenues of research now underscore the centrality of tumor-specific mutated private antigens to endogenous anti-tumor immunity...
May 8, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28482221/recent-progress-in-expanding-the-chemiluminescent-toolbox-for-bioimaging
#7
REVIEW
Kazushi Suzuki, Takeharu Nagai
Nowadays, the application of chemiluminescence imaging is no longer limited to the monitoring of slow biological phenomena such as circadian rhythms and in vivo tracking of cells. The expanded color palette of bright chemiluminescent protein and near-infrared-emitting luciferins have greatly improved the sensitivity of in vivo tracking of cells as well as enabling real-time cellular chemiluminescence imaging with high spatial resolution. Furthermore, functional chemiluminescent indicators based on the novel concept have been developed, providing more information related to physiological and pathological processes in living organisms...
May 5, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28458112/dnazyme-sensors-for-detection-of-metal-ions-in-the-environment-and-imaging-them-in-living-cells
#8
REVIEW
Claire E McGhee, Kang Yong Loh, Yi Lu
The on-site and real-time detection of metal ions is important for environmental monitoring and for understanding the impact of metal ions on human health. However, developing sensors selective for a wide range of metal ions that can work in the complex matrices of untreated samples and cells presents significant challenges. To meet these challenges, DNAzymes, an emerging class of metal ion-dependent enzymes selective for almost any metal ion, have been functionalized with fluorophores, nanoparticles and other imaging agents and incorporated into sensors for the detection of metal ions in environmental samples and for imaging metal ions in living cells...
April 27, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28458111/implementing-industrial-academic-partnerships-to-advance-bioenergy-research-the-energy-biosciences-institute
#9
REVIEW
Heather Youngs, Chris Somerville
The Energy Bioscience Institute (EBI) is an example of an ambitious academic-industry collaboration. We present a summary of how the EBI was organized during the first eight years and examples of several major research thrusts within the Institute to develop renewable biodiesel, jet fuel and lubricants from carbohydrates. In particular, we describe how the multidisciplinary nature and management structure of the organization led to hybrid approaches in which bioconversions and chemical synthesis were combined to develop new products...
April 27, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28458110/nanophotonic-label-free-biosensors-for-environmental-monitoring
#10
REVIEW
Blanca Chocarro-Ruiz, Adrián Fernández-Gavela, Sonia Herranz, Laura M Lechuga
The field of environmental monitoring has experienced a substantial progress in the last years but still the on-site control of contaminants is an elusive problem. In addition, the growing number of pollutant sources is accompanied by an increasing need of having efficient early warning systems. Several years ago biosensor devices emerged as promising environmental monitoring tools, but their level of miniaturization and their fully operation outside the laboratory prevented their use on-site. In the last period, nanophotonic biosensors based on evanescent sensing have emerged as an outstanding choice for portable point-of-care diagnosis thanks to their capability, among others, of miniaturization, multiplexing, label-free detection and integration in lab-on-chip platforms...
April 27, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28458037/human-pyrimidine-nucleotide-biosynthesis-as-a-target-for-antiviral-chemotherapy
#11
REVIEW
Ayse Okesli, Chaitan Khosla, Michael C Bassik
The development of broad-spectrum, host-acting antiviral therapies remains an important but elusive goal in anti-infective drug discovery. To replicate efficiently, viruses not only depend on their hosts for an adequate supply of pyrimidine nucleotides, but also up-regulate pyrimidine nucleotide biosynthesis in infected cells. In this review, we outline our understanding of mammalian de novo and salvage metabolic pathways for pyrimidine nucleotide biosynthesis. The available spectrum of experimental and FDA-approved drugs that modulate individual steps in these metabolic pathways is also summarized...
April 27, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28456061/switchable-cas9
#12
REVIEW
Florian Richter, Ines Fonfara, Renate Gelfert, Jennifer Nack, Emmanuelle Charpentier, Andreas Möglich
Ever since its discovery, Cas9 from Streptococcus pyogenes has revolutionized biology by enabling analysis and engineering of genomes with unprecedented precision and ease. To fine-tune on-target effects and to mitigate adverse effects caused by untimely and off-target action of Cas9, strategies have been developed to control its activity at the post-translational stage via external trigger signals. Control is either achieved by modifying the Cas9 protein itself or its programmable RNA molecules. To date, switchable Cas9 variants responding to small ligands, light or temperature have been engineered...
April 26, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28456060/sample-treatment-procedures-for-environmental-sensing-and-biosensing
#13
REVIEW
Josep Sanchís, Marta Llorca, Damià Barceló, Marinella Farré
During the last years, a lot of efforts have been put into developing novel sensors and biosensors systems for monitoring the occurrence of emerging pollutants in the environment. These analyses are often challenging because of the variety of physico-chemical properties of these substances, the extremely diluted concentrations at which they can be found, and the intrinsic complexity of environmental matrices. In order to improve the (bio)sensors' performance, preconcentration/pretreatment techniques may be implemented...
April 26, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28437710/customised-nucleic-acid-libraries-for-enhanced-aptamer-selection-and-performance
#14
REVIEW
Franziska Pfeiffer, Malte Rosenthal, Julia Siegl, Jörg Ewers, Günter Mayer
Aptamers are short single-stranded oligo(deoxy)nucleotides that are selected to bind to target molecules with high affinity and specificity. Because of their sophisticated characteristics and versatile applicability, aptamers are thought to become universal molecular probes in biotechnological and therapeutic applications. However, the variety of possible interactions with a putative target molecule is limited by the chemical repertoire of the natural nucleobases. Consequently, many desired targets are not addressable by aptamers...
April 21, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28431259/allosteric-regulation-of-metabolism-in-cancer-endogenous-mechanisms-and-considerations-for-drug-design
#15
REVIEW
Jamie A Macpherson, Dimitrios Anastasiou
Alterations in metabolic processes have been linked to various diseases, including cancer. Although gene expression can dictate long-term metabolic adaptation, many metabolic changes found in cancer are associated with altered allosteric properties of the underlying enzymes. Small molecule-protein interactions and intracellular signalling converge to orchestrate these allosteric mechanisms, which, emerging evidence suggests, constitute a promising therapeutic avenue. In this review we focus on glucose and energy metabolism to illustrate the role of allostery in cancer physiology and we discuss approaches to streamline the process of targeting aberrant allosteric pathways with small molecules...
April 18, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28427011/biosensors-for-the-monitoring-of-harmful-algal-blooms
#16
REVIEW
Daniel A McPartlin, Jonathan H Loftus, Aoife S Crawley, Joe Silke, Caroline S Murphy, Richard J O'Kennedy
Harmful algal blooms (HABs) are a major global concern due to their propensity to cause environmental damage, healthcare issues and economic losses. In particular, the presence of toxic phytoplankton is a cause for concern. Current HAB monitoring programs often involve laborious laboratory-based analysis at a high cost and with long turnaround times. The latter also hampers the potential to develop accurate and reliable models that can predict HAB occurrence. However, a promising solution for this issue may be in the form of remotely deployed biosensors, which can rapidly and continuously measure algal and toxin levels at the point-of-need (PON), at a low cost...
April 17, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28427010/leveraging-microbial-biosynthetic-pathways-for-the-generation-of-drop-in-biofuels
#17
REVIEW
Amin Zargar, Constance B Bailey, Robert W Haushalter, Christopher B Eiben, Leonard Katz, Jay D Keasling
Advances in retooling microorganisms have enabled bioproduction of 'drop-in' biofuels, fuels that are compatible with existing spark-ignition, compression-ignition, and gas-turbine engines. As the majority of petroleum consumption in the United States consists of gasoline (47%), diesel fuel and heating oil (21%), and jet fuel (8%), 'drop-in' biofuels that replace these petrochemical sources are particularly attractive. In this review, we discuss the application of aldehyde decarbonylases to produce gasoline substitutes from fatty acid products, a recently crystallized reductase that could hydrogenate jet fuel precursors from terpene synthases, and the exquisite control of polyketide synthases to produce biofuels with desired physical properties (e...
April 17, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28427007/novel-and-revisited-approaches-in-antituberculosis-drug-discovery
#18
REVIEW
Jennifer Herrmann, Jan Rybniker, Rolf Müller
The increasing prevalence of multidrug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) necessitates the discovery and development of novel drugs against tuberculosis. In this review, we focus on two recent approaches that led to the discovery of promising antitubercular compound classes: (I) Hits derived from large compound library screens are increasingly difficult to translate into clinical application; this in turn fostered the development of innovative screening methods. (II) An alternative strategy towards high-quality hits and leads is to evaluate chemically diverse scaffolds which can be found among natural products...
April 17, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28419931/applying-the-design-build-test-paradigm-in-microbiome-engineering
#19
REVIEW
Hoang Long Pham, Chun Loong Ho, Adison Wong, Yung Seng Lee, Matthew Wook Chang
The recently discovered roles of human microbiome in health and diseases have inspired research efforts across many disciplines to engineer microbiome for health benefits. In this review, we highlight recent progress in human microbiome research and how modifications to the microbiome could result in implications to human health. Furthermore, we discuss the application of a 'design-build-test' framework to expedite microbiome engineering efforts by reviewing current literature on three key aspects: design principles to engineer the human microbiome, methods to engineer microbiome with desired functions, and analytical techniques to examine complex microbiome samples...
April 15, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28410475/exploring-the-potential-of-saccharomyces-cerevisiae-for-biopharmaceutical-protein-production
#20
REVIEW
Guokun Wang, Mingtao Huang, Jens Nielsen
Production of recombinant proteins by yeast plays a vital role in the biopharmaceutical industry. It is therefore desirable to develop yeast platform strains for over-production of various biopharmaceutical proteins, but this requires fundamental knowledge of the cellular machinery, especially the protein secretory pathway. Integrated analyses of multi-omics datasets can provide comprehensive understanding of cellular function, and can enable systems biology-driven and mathematical model-guided strain engineering...
April 11, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
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