2003 Synthetic Biology study
Biology is a technology for processing information, materials, and energy. As a technology platform, biological systems provide access to artifacts and processes across a range of scales (e.g., the ribosome is a programmable nanoassembler, a bamboo shoot can grow 12” per day). Biology also forms the basis for human welfare (e.g., modest amounts of memory and logic, implemented as genetically encoded systems,would directly impact biological research and medicine). However, our ability to deploy biology as a technology and to interact intentionally with the living world is now limited; the charge to our study was to begin to specify enabling technologies that, if developed, would provide a general foundation for the engineering of biology and make routine the creation of synthetic biological systems that behave as predicted.
This is the final report of the 2002-2003 synthetic biology study, which brought together ~50 researchers to discuss an improved framework for engineering biology. The report itself takes the form of an annotated presentation and was written for a general technical audience. This study built upon a smaller, earlier study led by Tom Knight (unpublished at this time).
synthetic biology, prospective
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