Science and Technology

Nanotechnology, Synthetic Biology, & Public Opinion

A groundbreaking poll of 1,001 U.S. adults conducted by Peter D. Hart Research Associates and the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies found 90 percent of Americans think that the public should be better informed about the development of cutting-edge technologies, according to this 2009 report summarizing the findings. 

Poll: Awareness & Impressions Of Synthetic Biology

From August 16 to August 22, 2010, Hart Research Associates conducted a nationwide survey among 1,000 adults about attitudes toward the entities involved in the oversight of new scientific and technological advances, awareness of nanotechnology, and awareness of and attitudes toward synthetic biology and two potential applications of the science. According to this report, awareness of nanotechnology was at its highest measured level in five years.

Trends in Synthetic Biology Research Funding in the United States and Europe

A 2010 analysis by the Synthetic Biology Project found that the U.S. government  spent around $430 million on research related to synthetic biology since 2005, with the Department of Energy funding a majority of the research. By comparison, the analysis indicated that the European Union and three individual European countries – the Netherlands, United Kingdom, and Germany – had spent approximately $160 million during that same period. Approximately 4 percent of the U.S.

Synthetic Biology Newsletter

The first edition of the Synthetic Biology Newsletter, published in November 2010, reviews the basics of synthetic biology, explains how this new emerging technology intersects with several areas of science and talks about its effect on public perception.

There's a Sensor in Your Pocket

Cell phones and other mobile technologies enable a world where people can participate in sensing and analyzing aspects of their lives that were previously invisible. "Participatory Sensing" allows individuals to identify, measure, and address problems as diverse as air pollution or the damage to fragile ecosystems using mobile phones with basic sensing and communication systems like cameras, global positioning systems (GPS), and text messaging.

Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology

Synthetic biology will allow scientists and engineers to create biological systems that do not occur naturally as well as to re-engineer existing biological systems to perform novel and beneficial tasks. This 2009 report presents a framework for addressing the social and ethical issues surrounding the field.

 

PEN 17 - A Hard Pill to Swallow

WASHINGTON - Historically, the regulation of dietary supplements has been a significant challenge for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the fact that some of these products are now being manufactured using nanotechnology creates an additional layer of complexity. This new report asks the question: Is FDA equipped to meet the emerging regulatory challenge of dietary supplements that use engineered nanomaterials? The short answer is no.
 

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