People have strived to overcome limitations and accomplish the impossible for thousands of years. This trait has allowed people to spread and thrive worldwide, invent technology, and even gain the ability to fly. However, the latest field which has the potential to provide the most breakthroughs is the field of biotechnology. The innovations that are emerging are straight out of a science fiction movie, and learning about them can be incredibly exciting. Keep reading to find the newest trends that could be a big part of the future.
Gene therapy is one of the most unique yet important uses of this kind of technology and has long been an extensive biotechnology industry focus. Genes are the genetic instructions that are contained within people’s bodies, and they’re usually inherited from parents. These genes contain instructions for creating different proteins and molecules with various effects within the body. However, many diseases occur as a result of mutated or faulty genes. With the help of biotechnology, scientists have been able to target these genes and destroy or nullify them, or even make some of their own to counter their effects in the body, effectively curing patients.
Immunotherapy is another sector of the industry that scientists have devoted countless hours and millions of dollars to. This branch of pharmacology deals with how doctors can counter cancer’s effects on the body. Cancer begins as a result of increased cell growth and division in the body, often without oversight or any regulation. While growing and dividing, cells pass through biological “checkpoints” before proceeding, which are faulty in cancer cells. However, scientists have used the power of gene synthesis to create drugs that can improve the checkpoint system, stopping cancer before it can progress in many patients.
Synthetic biology is an interesting branch of biotechnology and one that’s difficult to understand, but it has countless potential benefits for the human race. Using technology and gene synthesis, scientists have been able to artificially create biological life forms and edit them in ways to suit people’s needs. For example, some strains of bacteria have been edited to ensure they secrete insulin when feeding. This insulin is then obtained, treated, and packaged commercially for diabetic patients.
The Use of AI to Make Drugs
The process of making drugs is long and drawn out, with countless regulatory bodies like the FDA forcing manufacturers to ensure what they’re putting out on the market is safe. However, scientists have been able to use AI to test out certain biosynthetic drugs, proving they’re safe for consumption in a faster time by feeding the AI information about tests and other lab results. While the use of AI in this field is still limited, some labs have already begun to use them to further identify side effects of new drugs in patients, which will speed up the drug approval process.
Regenerative medicine is a biotechnology field that deals with creating and providing new tissues or even body parts to patients. Scientists have achieved this by using stem cells normally found in the body, especially embryonic stem cells that are available during pregnancy, which can be used to make any tissue in the body. Stem cells are adaptable and can specialize to form any organ, and doctors have already begun to use this technology to create new organs for those who desperately need organ transplants.
Blockchain Usage for Healthcare Data
Blockchain usage is getting more and more popular in the field of biotechnology, just as it gets adopted faster and faster in most industries. Blockchains specialize in encrypting and protecting information, and medical information taken from patients is one of the most sensitive forms of information, needing to be protected thoroughly. Blockchains can ensure that this medical data is not easily hacked and that only the relevant parties, such as the patient and doctor, can access these records.
Human bodies are incredibly complicated, and discoveries about it has pushed humanity closer to being able to use DNA technology in countless applications. With this technology, scientists can make even more discoveries and innovations, cure or prevent disease, and achieve things that were never thought possible. Biotechnology is the way of the future, and by studying and learning about the newest trends emerging from the industry, you’ll be able to get a glimpse of that future.