Dossiers on bioeconomy-related topics
Dossier - 20-Mar-2017
Petroleum is the lifeblood of the chemical industry. It is the raw material for basic chemicals and is used to produce a tremendous wealth of products. Growing demand and dwindling resources mean that the chemical industry is increasingly focusing on renewable resources. Lignin is a wood component that is proving to be a particularly promising resource. It is currently almost exclusively used for generating energy, although it could also be used for many other purposes. In Baden-Württemberg, a research consortium is specifically focused on exploring the potential of this wood component.
Dossier - 14-Jun-2016
The number of publications and patents that involve the CRISPR/Cas system has been increasing exponentially since the technique was first described a few years ago. The increase in funding for projects involving CRISPR/Cas also demonstrates how powerful this new method is. The targeted modification of genomes (also called gene editing or genome editing) using CRISPR/Cas is extraordinarily accurate and also has the potential to cure hereditary diseases. However, the benefits of genome editing raise ethical concerns and involve risks that need to be taken seriously.
Dossier - 09-Feb-2015
The boundaries between traditional scientific disciplines are becoming less and less distinct. Interdisciplinary cooperation is often required to study complex processes and biomolecular issues. Interdisciplinary cooperation is central to chemical biology, a scientific discipline that applies chemical substances, methods and tools to the study of biological systems ranging from the chemical synthesis of biologically active substances to the specific chemical modification of biomolecules.
Dossier - 30-Sep-2014
Biogenic raw materials have never been as popular as they are now. Efforts to tap renewable carbon resources are already underway, despite the fact that new oil drilling technologies are boosting fossil fuel stockpiles. In the medium term, industry will have to expand its raw materials base, and in the long term it may have to renew it completely. Industrial biotechnology is one of the key technologies in the transition from an economy based on fossil fuels to one based on renewable resources. The microbes that produce renewable resources need access to a sufficient supply of biomass. But what kind of biomass will they use and do we have enough of it?
Dossier - 16-Jun-2014
Biotechnology opens up numerous opportunities for the food industry. The targeted use of biotechnological methods can, amongst other things, help reduce the quantity and number of unhealthy ingredients in foods as well as degrade allergenic substances. Genomic research and targeted breeding also greatly facilitate progress in agriculture. Food biotechnology therefore contributes significantly to saving resources, optimising harvest yields and producing better foods.
Dossier - 02-Jun-2014
Science constantly provides researchers with new challenges biologists and bioanalysts have to deal with and which come from sources as varied as the ever increasing number of resistant pathogenic bacterial strains or the famine conditions in Third-World countries. In the search for scientific truths bioanalysis is the development optimization and application of the entire range of analytical methods available. However we need to keep in mind that although this leads to an expansion of knowledge the truth is only temporary.
Dossier - 16-Dec-2013
While the use of biotechnological methods for the purification of water, soil and air has already been state of the art for quite a few years, the use of microorganisms for the recovery of metal and mineral raw materials from industrial and agricultural waste has also started to attract the interest of scientists. This dossier addresses this topic, explains what geobiotechnology and urban mining are all about and presents some of the activities going on in Baden-Württemberg.
Dossier - 09-Dec-2013
Industrial or white biotechnology uses microorganisms and enzymes to produce goods for industry, including chemicals, plastics, food, agricultural and pharmaceutical products and energy carriers. Renewable raw materials and increasingly also waste from agriculture and forestry are used for the manufacture of industrial goods.