Materials chemistry in the emerging field of synthetic biology

C. Alexander, R.K. O'Reilly

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Synthetic biology is a field that seeks to adopt chemical and engineering principles for manipulation of processes important in biology. The definition is broad, for it spans concepts as varying as engineering of multiparallel gene circuits, through to external control of cellular machinery and even to the creation and construction of life-like behavior in silico and in vitro. Although the term synthetic biology is now familiar to many scientists and there is a growing number of specialist journals in the field, its evolution as a scientific paradigm has (fittingly) been rather rapid. However, since chemistry and materials are central to the new discipline, it is particularly timely to evaluate progress in the materials chemistry that underlies many advances in synthetic biology. Here we have gathered together some exciting recent papers that encompass many of the leading developments in synthetic biology, and evaluate how these contribute to the progression of the field and towards practical application.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18865-18867
JournalJournal of Materials Chemistry
Issue number47
Publication statusPublished - 7 Nov 2011


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