Trends in Biotechnology
This journal offers authors two options (open access or subscription) to publish research

Oct 01, 2021

Volume 39Issue 10p965-1110, e1-e2
Textile triboelectric nanogenerators use the surface charging effect of polymer materials to generate electrical signals. In pages 1078–1092 of this issue, Chen and colleagues discuss how these nanogenerators can sensitively detect arterial pressure fluctuation with an extremely high signal-to-noise ratio for high-fidelity continuous pulse waveform monitoring. Cover image from Jun Chen....
Textile triboelectric nanogenerators use the surface charging effect of polymer materials to generate electrical signals. In pages 1078–1092 of this issue, Chen and colleagues discuss how these nanogenerators can sensitively detect arterial pressure fluctuation with an extremely high signal-to-noise ratio for high-fidelity continuous pulse waveform monitoring. Cover image from Jun Chen.

Science & Society

  • Biotechnology and Biosafety Policy at OECD: Future Trends

    • Peter W.E. Kearns,
    • Gijs A. Kleter,
    • Hans E.N. Bergmans,
    • Harry A. Kuiper
    Open Access
    The OECD Council Recommendation on Recombinant DNA Safety Considerations is a legal instrument which has been in force since 1986. It outlines the safety assessment practices that countries should have in place for agricultural and environmental biotechnology. This article suggests possible updates to make it suitable for the modern era.


  • Additive Manufacturing Tools to Improve the Performance of Chromatographic Approaches

    • J.F.A. Valente,
    • F. Sousa,
    • N. Alves
    Chromatography is widely applied industrially. However, some limitations are associated with its common supports, and the impossibility to fully control their structural features is particularly restrictive. Additive manufacturing (AM) is emerging as a fast, highly precise, and reproducible technology for producing chromatographic supports that can improve its performance.
  • Potency Meets Precision in Nano-optimized Chemotherapeutics

    • Artavazd Arumov,
    • Asaad Trabolsi,
    • Jonathan H. Schatz
    Chemotherapy remains the most widely used cancer treatment modality. Nanotechnology provides exciting opportunities to improve these drugs, transforming decades-old generic treatments into precise new medicines. We illustrate the potential of recent advances in nanotechnology-enhanced therapy focusing on diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL); the most common hematologic malignancy.


  • Intelligent Platelet Morphometry

    • Yuqi Zhou,
    • Akihiro Isozaki,
    • Atsushi Yasumoto,
    • Ting-Hui Xiao,
    • Yutaka Yatomi,
    • Cheng Lei,
    • Keisuke Goda
    Technological advances in image-based platelet analysis or platelet morphometry are critical for a better understanding of the structure and function of platelets in biological research as well as for the development of better clinical strategies in medical practice. Recently, the advent of high-throughput optical imaging and deep learning has boosted platelet morphometry to the next level by providing a new set of capabilities beyond what is achievable with traditional platelet morphometry, shedding light on the unexplored domain of platelet analysis.


  • Novel Modalities in DNA Data Storage

    • Cheng Kai Lim,
    • Saurabh Nirantar,
    • Wen Shan Yew,
    • Chueh Loo Poh
    The field of storing information in DNA has expanded exponentially. Most common modalities involve encoding information from bits into synthesized nucleotides, storage in liquid or dry media, and decoding via sequencing. However, limitations to this paradigm include the cost of DNA synthesis and sequencing, along with low throughput. Further unresolved questions include the appropriate media of storage and the scalability of such approaches for commercial viability. In this review, we examine various storage modalities involving the use of DNA from a systems-level perspective.
  • Genetic Toolkits to Design and Build Mammalian Synthetic Systems

    • Roberto Di Blasi,
    • Annalise Zouein,
    • Tom Ellis,
    • Francesca Ceroni
    Construction of DNA-encoded programs is central to synthetic biology and the chosen method often determines the time required to design and build constructs for testing. Here, we describe and summarise key features of the available toolkits for DNA construction for mammalian cells. We compare the different cloning strategies based on their complexity and the time needed to generate constructs of different sizes, and we reflect on why Golden Gate toolkits now dominate due to their modular design.
  • Synthetic Biology Approaches To Enhance Microalgal Productivity

    • Mihris Ibnu Saleem Naduthodi,
    • Nico J. Claassens,
    • Sarah D’Adamo,
    • John van der Oost,
    • Maria J. Barbosa
    Open Access
    The major bottleneck in commercializing biofuels and other commodities produced by microalgae is the high cost associated with phototrophic cultivation. Improving microalgal productivities could be a solution to this problem. Synthetic biology methods have recently been used to engineer the downstream production pathways in several microalgal strains. However, engineering upstream photosynthetic and carbon fixation metabolism to enhance growth, productivity, and yield has barely been explored in microalgae.
  • Synthetic Biology towards Engineering Microbial Lignin Biotransformation

    • Allison L. Yaguchi,
    • Stephen J. Lee,
    • Mark A. Blenner
    Lignin is the second most abundant biopolymer on earth and is a major source of aromatic compounds; however, it is vastly underutilized owing to its heterogeneous and recalcitrant nature. Microorganisms have evolved efficient mechanisms that overcome these challenges to depolymerize lignin and funnel complex mixtures of lignin-derived monomers to central metabolites. This review summarizes recent synthetic biology efforts to enhance lignin depolymerization and aromatic catabolism in bacterial and fungal hosts for the production of both natural and novel bioproducts.
  • Graphene for Biosensing Applications in Point-of-Care Testing

    • Ioannis Prattis,
    • Ernestine Hui,
    • Patrik Gubeljak,
    • Gabriele S. Kaminski Schierle,
    • Antonio Lombardo,
    • Luigi G. Occhipinti
    Graphene and graphene-related materials (GRMs) exhibit a unique combination of electronic, optical, and electrochemical properties, which make them ideally suitable for ultrasensitive and selective point-of-care testing (POCT) devices. POCT device-based applications in diagnostics require test results to be readily accessible anywhere to produce results within a short analysis timeframe. This review article provides a summary of methods and latest developments in the field of graphene and GRM-based biosensing in POCT and an overview of the main applications of the latter in nucleic acids and enzymatic biosensing, cell detection, and immunosensing.
  • Textile Triboelectric Nanogenerators for Wearable Pulse Wave Monitoring

    • Guorui Chen,
    • Christian Au,
    • Jun Chen
    Arterial pulse waves are regarded as vital diagnostic tools in the assessment of cardiovascular disease (CVD). Because of their high sensitivity, rapid response time, wearability, and low cost, textile triboelectric nanogenerators (TENGs) are emerging as a compelling biotechnology for wearable pulse wave monitoring. We discuss sensing mechanisms for pulse-to-electricity conversion, analytical models for calculating cardiovascular parameters, and application scenarios for textile TENGs. We provide a prospective on the challenges that limit the wider application of this technology and suggest some future research directions.
  • Measurement Techniques to Resolve and Control Population Dynamics of Mixed-Culture Processes

    • Ivan Schlembach,
    • Alexander Grünberger,
    • Miriam A. Rosenbaum,
    • Lars Regestein
    Open Access
    Microbial mixed cultures are gaining increasing attention as biotechnological production systems, since they offer a large but untapped potential for future bioprocesses. Effects of secondary metabolite induction and advantages of labor division for the degradation of complex substrates offer new possibilities for process intensification. However, mixed cultures are highly complex, and, consequently, many biotic and abiotic parameters are required to be identified, characterized, and ideally controlled to establish a stable bioprocess.