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Current Opinion in Biotechnology

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https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28822607/editorial-overview-chemical-biotechnology-interdisciplinary-approaches-for-the-engineering-of-nucleic-acids-proteins-and-cells
#1
EDITORIAL
Günter Mayer, Andreas Möglich
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
August 16, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28822276/exploiting-algal-mineralization-for-nanotechnology-bringing-coccoliths-to-the-fore
#2
REVIEW
Alastair W Skeffington, André Scheffel
Complex mineral structures are produced by many microalgal species. Pioneering work on diatom silica has demonstrated the potential of such structures in nanotechnology. The calcified scales of coccolithophores (coccoliths) have received less attention, but the large diversity of architectures make coccoliths attractive as parts for nano-devices. Currently coccolith calcite can be modified by the incorporation of metal ions or adsorption of enzymes to the surface, but genetic modification of coccolithophores may permit the production of coccoliths with customized architectures and surface properties...
August 16, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28806583/plant-genome-scale-reconstruction-from-single-cell-to-multi-tissue-modelling-and-omics-analyses
#3
REVIEW
Cristiana Gomes de Oliveira Dal'Molin, Lars Keld Nielsen
In this review, we present the latest developments in plant systems biology with particular emphasis on plant genome-scale reconstructions and multi-omics analyses. Understanding multicellular metabolism is far from trivial and 'omics' data are difficult to interpret in the absence of a systems framework. 'Omics' data appropriately integrated with genome-scale reconstructions and modelling facilitates our understanding of how individual components interact and influence overall cell, tissue or organisms function...
August 11, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28803187/reinforcing-carbon-fixation-co2-reduction-replacing-and-supporting-carboxylation
#4
REVIEW
Charles Ar Cotton, Christian Edlich-Muth, Arren Bar-Even
Carbon dioxide enters the biosphere via one of two mechanisms: carboxylation, in which CO2 is attached to an existing metabolite, or reduction, in which CO2 is converted to formate or carbon monoxide before further assimilation. Here, we focus on the latter mechanism which usually receives less attention. To better understand the possible advantages of the 'reduction-first' approach, we compare the two general strategies according to the kinetics of the CO2-capturing enzymes, and the resource consumption of the subsequent pathways...
August 10, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28800419/genome-editing-and-plant-transformation-of-solanaceous-food-crops
#5
REVIEW
Joyce Van Eck
During the past decade, the ability to alter plant genomes in a DNA site-specific manner was realized through availability of sequenced genomes and emergence of editing technologies based on complexes that guide endonucleases. Generation of targeted DNA breaks by ZFNs, TALENs, and CRISPR/Cas9, then mending by repair mechanisms, provides a valuable foundation for studies of gene function and trait modification. Genome editing has been successful in several food crops, including those belonging to the Solanaceae, which contains some of the most widely used, economically important ones such as tomato and potato...
August 8, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28800418/lighting-the-shadows-methods-that-expose-nuclear-and-cytoplasmic-gene-regulatory-control
#6
REVIEW
Travis A Lee, Julia Bailey-Serres
Within cells, myriad interconnected processes orchestrate the progression of gene expression from chromatin, to mRNA, and to protein. Assessment of DNA methylation, histone modification, transcript isoform abundance, and the proteome are frequently performed to examine this progression, but do not resolve many intermediary steps in the coordinated regulation of gene expression. Here, we consider single and multiplexed technologies that yield genome-wide assessment of gene and mRNA activity, from transcription factor access to DNA to de novo synthesis of protein...
August 8, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28787641/functions-and-emerging-applications-of-bacteriocins
#7
REVIEW
Michael L Chikindas, Richard Weeks, Djamel Drider, Vladimir A Chistyakov, Leon Mt Dicks
Bacteriocins, defined as ribosomally synthesized antimicrobial peptides, have traditionally been used as food preservatives, either added or produced by starter cultures during fermentation. In-depth studies of a select few bacteriocins opened exiting new research fields and broadened the application of these antimicrobial peptides. The possibility of developing bacteriocins into next generation antibiotics, accompanied with the rapid development in genetics and nanotechnology, paves the way to even more fascinating applications such as novel carrier molecules (delivery systems) and the treatment of cancer...
August 5, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28783603/strategies-for-transitioning-macrocyclic-peptides-to-cell-permeable-drug-leads
#8
REVIEW
Louise J Walport, Richard Obexer, Hiroaki Suga
The ready availability of potent peptide binders for any desired target highlights their potential impact as therapeutic agents. Despite their versatility, however, peptides tend to display unfavourable pharmacological properties, such as low bioavailability, high renal clearance and proteolytic degradation rates, and low cell permeability. Fortunately, an increasing number of promising strategies to produce novel peptides and furnish pre-existing scaffolds with more drug-like properties are now becoming available...
August 4, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28779606/strategies-for-terpenoid-overproduction-and-new-terpenoid-discovery
#9
REVIEW
Guangkai Bian, Zixin Deng, Tiangang Liu
Terpenoids comprise the largest family of natural products and have widespread applications. The overproduction of value-added terpenoids and the efficient mining of new terpenoids represent major challenges in the fields of metabolic engineering and natural product discovery. For terpenoid overproduction in microbial systems, in vitro reconstitution strategy guided rational engineering was emphasized, and -omics studies provide further information for targeted engineering. In addition, systematic engineering, including host and pathway engineering for terpenoid overproduction was reviewed...
August 2, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28772191/synthetic-genetic-circuits-in-crop-plants
#10
REVIEW
Orlando de Lange, Eric Klavins, Jennifer Nemhauser
The love affair between crop breeding and genetics began over a century ago and has continued unabated, from mass selection programs to targeted genome modifications. Synthetic genetic circuits, a recent development, are combinations of regulatory and coding DNA introduced into a crop plant to achieve a desired function. Genetic circuits could accelerate crop improvement, allowing complex traits to be rationally designed and requisite DNA parts delivered directly into a genome of interest. However, there is not yet a standardized pipeline from exploratory laboratory testing to crop trials, and bringing transgenic products to market remains a considerable barrier...
July 31, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28750202/combinatorial-pathway-optimization-for-streamlined-metabolic-engineering
#11
REVIEW
Markus Jeschek, Daniel Gerngross, Sven Panke
Elimination of metabolic flux imbalances in microbial cell factories is an important part in the establishment of viable biotechnological production processes. However, due to the high complexity of cellular metabolism, the limited a priori knowledge about the majority of production pathways and a lack of forward design standards, metabolic engineers strongly rely on empirical screening methodologies to achieve the required improvement of cell behavior. Combinatorial pathway engineering provides an interesting tool to identify global solutions for intricate pathways, but methods for the reduction of combinatorial library size are inevitably required to restrict the experimental effort to an affordable size...
July 24, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28750201/advancing-therapeutic-applications-of-synthetic-gene-circuits
#12
REVIEW
Yasutomi Higashikuni, William Cw Chen, Timothy K Lu
Synthetic biology aims to introduce new sense-and-respond capabilities into living cells, which would enable novel therapeutic strategies. The development of regulatory elements, molecular computing devices, and effector screening technologies has enabled researchers to design synthetic gene circuits in many organisms, including mammalian cells. Engineered gene networks, such as closed-loop circuits or Boolean logic gate circuits, can be used to program cells to perform specific functions with spatiotemporal control and restoration of homeostasis in response to the extracellular environment and intracellular signaling...
July 24, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28738232/molecular-tools-and-emerging-strategies-for-deep-genetic-genomic-refactoring-of-pseudomonas
#13
REVIEW
Esteban Martínez-García, Víctor de Lorenzo
The interest of the genus Pseudomonas largely relies on the virulence of some of its species for plants and animals (including humans). Yet, pathogenic features of some isolates coexist with others often present in environmental variants that promote plant growth and degrade chemical pollutants. Many of these traits can be traced to the intrinsic properties of the genomic chassis of this genus along with distinct genetic parts and devices. With the tools of Synthetic Biology these can be enhanced and/or repurposed for the sake of biological control, environmental remediation and whole-cell biocatalysis...
July 21, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28738208/plastid-transformation-and-its-application-in-metabolic-engineering
#14
REVIEW
Paulina Fuentes, Tegan Armarego-Marriott, Ralph Bock
Metabolic pathway engineering by transgene expression from the plastid (chloroplast) genome offers significant attractions, including straightforward multigene engineering by pathway expression from operons, high transgene expression levels, and increased transgene containment due to maternal inheritance of plastids in most crops. In addition, it provides direct access to the large and diverse metabolite pools in chloroplasts and non-green plastid types. Here, we review recent progress with extending the toolbox for plastid engineering and highlight selected applications in the area of metabolic engineering, including the combined engineering of nuclear and plastid genomes for the production of artemisinic acid, the direct harness of chloroplast reducing power for the synthesis of dhurrin and the use of an edible host for the production of astaxanthin...
July 21, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28734757/editorial-overview-systems-biology-for-biotechnology
#15
EDITORIAL
Matthias Heinemann, Yitzhak Pilpel
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
July 19, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28732264/insights-into-plant-phosphate-sensing-and-signaling
#16
REVIEW
Byung-Kook Ham, Jieyu Chen, Yan Yan, William J Lucas
Phosphorus (P) is a macronutrient essential for plant growth, therefore, soil P level is critical to crop yield potential in agriculture. As Pi levels limit crop yield under many soil conditions, it is crucial to understand the mechanisms by which plants adapt to low-phosphate (Pi) soil conditions and interact with their soil microbiome to improve crop P use efficiency, in order to ensure global food security. Recent advances have been made towards achieving this goal through advancing our understanding of the plant's response to limiting Pi conditions to maintain P homeostasis...
July 18, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28715702/engineering-carbon-fixation-in-e-coli-from-heterologous-rubisco-expression-to-the-calvin-benson-bassham-cycle
#17
REVIEW
Niv Antonovsky, Shmuel Gleizer, Ron Milo
Carbon fixation is the gateway of inorganic carbon into the biosphere. Our ability to engineer carbon fixation pathways in living organisms is expected to play a crucial role in the quest towards agricultural and energetic sustainability. Recent successes to introduce non-native carbon fixation pathways into heterotrophic hosts offer novel platforms for manipulating these pathways in genetically malleable organisms. Here, we focus on past efforts and future directions for engineering the dominant carbon fixation pathway in the biosphere, the Calvin-Benson cycle, into the well-known model organism Escherichia coli...
July 14, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28715701/synthetic-biological-approaches-to-optogenetically-control-cell-signaling
#18
REVIEW
Katja Kolar, Wilfried Weber
Precise spatial and temporal control of cellular processes is in life sciences a highly sought-after capability. In the recent years, this goal has become progressively achievable through the field of optogenetics, which utilizes light as a non-invasive means to control genetically encoded light-responsive proteins. The latest optogenetic systems, such as those for control of subcellular localization or cellular decision-making and tissue morphogenesis provide us with insights to gain a deeper understanding of the cellular inner workings...
July 14, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28711855/exploiting-and-engineering-hemoproteins-for-abiological-carbene-and-nitrene-transfer-reactions
#19
REVIEW
Oliver F Brandenberg, Rudi Fasan, Frances H Arnold
The surge in reports of heme-dependent proteins as catalysts for abiotic, synthetically valuable carbene and nitrene transfer reactions dramatically illustrates the evolvability of the protein world and our nascent ability to exploit that for new enzyme chemistry. We highlight the latest additions to the hemoprotein-catalyzed reaction repertoire (including carbene Si-H and C-H insertions, Doyle-Kirmse reactions, aldehyde olefinations, azide-to-aldehyde conversions, and intermolecular nitrene C-H insertion) and show how different hemoprotein scaffolds offer varied reactivity and selectivity...
July 13, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28709113/reprogramming-cellular-functions-with-engineered-membrane-proteins
#20
REVIEW
Caroline Arber, Melvin Young, Patrick Barth
Taking inspiration from Nature, synthetic biology utilizes and modifies biological components to expand the range of biological functions for engineering new practical devices and therapeutics. While early breakthroughs mainly concerned the design of gene circuits, recent efforts have focused on engineering signaling pathways to reprogram cellular functions. Since signal transduction across cell membranes initiates and controls intracellular signaling, membrane receptors have been targeted by diverse protein engineering approaches despite limited mechanistic understanding of their function...
July 11, 2017: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
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