Concepts in Biotechnology - History, Science andBusiness
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More About This Title Concepts in Biotechnology - History, Science andBusiness


Adopting a unique approach, this novel textbook integrates science and business for an inside view on the biotech industry. Peering behind the scenes, it provides a thorough analysis of the foundations of the present day industry for students and professionals alike: its history, its tools and processes, its markets and products. The authors, themselves close witnesses of the emergence of modern biotechnology from its very beginnings in the 1980s, clearly separate facts from fiction, looking behind the exaggerated claims made by start-up companies trying to attract investors. Essential reading for every student and junior researcher looking for a career in the biotech sector.


Born in 1941, Klaus Buchholz studied chemistry at the universities of Saarbrücken und Heidelberg (Germany), graduating in 1967. In 1969 he received his PhD from the Technical University of Munich, after which he worked as a researcher with a group on biocatalysis at Dechema e.V. in Frankfurt/Main. In 1981 he received his Habilitation at the Technical University of Braunschweig, where he then became department head at the Institute for Agricultural Technology and Sugar Industry. In 1991 he became Professor at the Institute for Chemical Engineering. His main research areas include biocatalysts, enzymatic synthesis of carbohydrates, and environmental biotechnology. He is also the author of a
well-known textbook on biocatalysts and an advisory board member of several journals.

Born in 1945, John Collins studied Microbiology (B.Sc.) at University College, London University, and a doctorate (Ph.D.; 1971) at the University of Leicester, UK. Postdoctoral work was carried out at UCSD, La Jolla 1971-4 with Don Helinski at the time DNA cloning was developed in collaboration with the Cohen and Boyer labs.
He brought this technology to the University of Copenhagen, developing gene cloning methods to isolate and study bacterial and eukaryotic genes and how they are regulated. In 1975 he joined the German National Center for Biotechnological Research (GBF; now HZI) in Braunschweig initiating some of the first experiments to apply gene technology to biotechnological projects (Penicillin acylase, interferon ß; Cytomegalovirus; mutein design of protease inhibitors). In 1987 he accepted a joint appointment as section Head for Cell Biology and Genetics at the GBF and as Professor at the Technical University of Braunschweig. He has worked as international adviser to a number of governments and institutes and lectures on biotechnology, intellectual property, genetics and evolution. He is an elected EMBO (European Molecular Biology Organisation) member and was a founding member of the Human Genome Organistion (HUGO). In 1997 he founded a Biotech Company which was acquired by a Californian Company in 2002. His current work is directed at the development of Inhibitors
of Hepatitis C virus using combinatorial biology as well as trying to explain the impact of scientific developments to the informed public.



Abbreviations and Glossary.

Part One. History.

1. Introduction.

2. The Early Period to 1850.

2.1 Introduction.

2.2 Experimental Scientific Findings.

2.3 Application.

2.4 Theoretical Approaches.


3. The Period from 1850 to 1890.

3.1 Introduction.

3.2 Experimental Findings.

3.3 Practical Application, Technical Progress and Institutional Development.

3.4 Theoretical Approaches.


4. The Period from 1890 to 1950.

4.1 Introduction.

4.2 Research – Advances in the Basics of Biotechnology: Experimental Findings.

4.3 Technological Development, Progress and Application.

4.4 Theoretical Approaches.


5. Outlook, from 1950 Onwards: Biotechnology – Science or What?

5.1 Introduction.

5.2 Traditional Biotechnology and the Decehma Report.

5.3 The Changing Focus in BT in the USA in the Early 1980s.

5.4 Conclusions.


Part Two The New Paradigm Based on Molecular Biology and Genetics.

6. Broadening of Biotechnology through Understanding Life, Genetics and Evolution.


7. The Beginning of the New Biotechnology.

7.1 Introduction.

7.2 The Beginnings of Evolution Theory and Genetics.

7.3 The Origin of Recombinant DNA Technology.

7.4 Oligonucleotide Synthesis Leads to Protein Engineering.

7.5 Synthetic DNA, Reverse Transciptase: Isolating Genes.

7.6 Biodiversity and Gene Mining.

7.7 Creating New Diversity by Design or Empirically.

7.8 ‘Genetic Fingerprinting’.

7.9 Inheritable Predisposition to Disease.


8. Ethical Aspects Related to Genome Research, and Reproductive Medicine.

8.1 Negative Public Reaction to Gene Technology.

8.2 Ethical Aspects: Animal Cloning and Fertility Research.


9. Elucidating Protein Structure: The Beginnings of Rational Protein Design.

9.1 Cambridge England, the Cradle of Structural Analysis of Macromolecules.

9.2 Redesigning the Protein Core.

9.3 Redesigning the Protein by Altering Primary Sequence.

9.4 Post Translational Modifications.

9.5 Total Chemical Synthesis.

9.6 Validation of Drug Design Based on the known Structure of the Target.

9.7 General Considerations in Drug Development.


10. The Development of Antibodies as Pharmaceutical Products.

10.1 An Introduction to the Immune System.

10.2 The Beginnings of Applied Immunology.

10.3 Monoclonal Antibodies.

10.4 Producing Antibodies via rDNA and Combinatorial Biology.

10.5 Affinity Enrichment on Surface of Immobilized Target Molecules.

10.6 Mice with Human Antibody Gene Repertoires.

10.7 Two Severe Setbacks during Clinical Testing.

10.8 A Survey of Therapeutic Antibodies.


11. Hereditary Disease and Human Genome Analysis.

11.1 Introduction.

11.2 Heredity Studies and Family Counselling .

11.3 Early Attempts to Analyse the Human Genome.

11.4 The Personalized Genome and Personal Medicine.

11.5 Analysing the Effect of the Environment on the Human Genome: Epigenetics.


12. Transgenic Animals and Plants.

12.1 Introduction.

12.2 Stem Cells and Gene Targeting.


13. Extrapolating to the Future.

13.1 Summary of the Status Quo.

13.2 Insect Control Through ‘Sterile’ Males (SIT).

13.3 The Future of Gene Therapy.

13.4 Stem Cell Therapy.

13.5 Flash Sequencing DNA: A Human Genome Sequence in Minutes?

13.6 Systems Biology and Looking for ‘Druggable’ Targets.

13.7 Synthetic Biology.


14. Biotechnology and Intellectual Property.

14.1 Introduction.

14.2 Patents Ensure Growth and Rapid Dissemination of Knowledge.

14.3 Owning a Patent does not simply Mean that it can be Implemented: “Freedom to Operate’ (FTO).

14.4 Life-forms as ‘Novel Subject Matter’ for Patents?

14.5 Technology “State of the Art’: Precedence/Directives, not Fixed by Law.

14.6 Who can make Decisions about Public Morality?

14.7 Biotechnology-oriented Directives Guide Patenting Decisions.


Part Three. Application.

15. Bioprocess Engineering.

15.1 Introduction.

15.2 Aspects of Applied Microbiology.

15.3 Biocatalysis.

15.4 Biochemical Engineering.

15.5 Process Sustainability and Ecological Considerations.

15.6 Biosystems Engineering, including Omics Technologies.

15.7 Outlook and Perspectives.


16. Industrial Biotechnology.

16.1 Introduction.

16.2 General Aspects.

16.3 Commodities.

16.4 Chemicals.

16.5 Food Processing and Products.

16.6 Environmental Processes.

16.7 Summary, Trends and Perspectives.


17. Pharmaceutical Biotechnology.

17.1 Introduction.

17.2 Drug Targeting, Discovery Strategies and Development.

17.3 Pharmaceuticals Production.

17.4 Products, Pharmaceuticals Made by Biotechnology.

17.5 Medicinal Techniques, Diagnostics.

17.6 Business: Companies and Economic Aspects.


18. Plant Biotechnology.

18.1 Introduction.

18.2 Political, Ethical and Biosafety Aspects.

18.3 Research and Development.

18.4 Application of Modified Plants and Products.

18.5 Economic Aspects.

18.6 Summary and Outlook.




"Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students and above." (Choice, 1 September 2011)