BY: Ezhuthachan Mithu Mohanan (MSIWM043)

In the emerging field of science and technology, Biotechnology is Growing and Developing field, where new ideas and Experiments and research make this field unique and diversifying. 

Biotechnology: The branch of science which uses technology with living system is biotechnology. Biotechnology uses modern system of modification of biological systems. There are many disciplines that belong to the field of Biotechnology. The development of various methods, approaches and research in this field gives a new way of approaching science and its outcomes.

Biotechnology an accidental history: 

Even though we consider biotechnology to be a modern science, but it was way 1000 years back when the methods and approaches where used by our ancient people, Around 7000 years ago there was accident use of bacteria to make vinegar by Mesopotamia. Before 2,300 years Theophrastus thought that brad beans left magic in soil, but later it was concluded that some bacteria’s could fix nitrogen which enriched the soil. Development of gene banks is not a new concept, In1495 BC Queen Hatshepsut of Egypt used the concept of collecting specimens of plants which produced Frankincense (hardened gum-like material from trunk of the Boswellia sacra tree). Fermentation was always an ancient method which evolved with upcoming generation. In 19th century Sir Louis Pasteur discovered the fermenting beer using yeast. Gregor Mendel the father of genetics, was the one who believed that mathematics can be used with biology, but since his ideas and concepts were new and people considered it unbelievable was never awarded during is period. 

Evolution of Biotechnology :

  • 6000 BC :Babylonians used yeast in beer industry 
  • 320 BC :  Aristotle coined the theory of inheritance from father 
  • 1630 : William Harvey explained sexual reproduction
  • 1673:  Anton van Leeuwenhoek developed Microscope., identified that these microorganism
  • 1859: Charles Darwin  Proposed Natural selection
  • 1863 : Pasteurization discovered by Pasteur
  • 1863 : Pasteurization discovered by Pasteur
  • 1870: Mitosis discovered by Walter  Flemming
  • 1880: Louis Pasteur discovered weak stain of Cholera
  • 1902: Sutton discovered that segments get transferred from Chromosomes
  • 1906: Salvarsan was discovered by Paul Ehrlich 
  • 1907: Mutation theory by Hunt Morgan 
  • 1909:Wilhelm Johannsen Coined word genotype and phenotype
  • 1912:William Lawrence Bragg Discovered application of X-Rays
  • 1926: The Theory of gene by Morgan
  • 1928: Transforming principle by Fredrick Griffith
  • 1941: George Wells Beadle and Edward L Tatum proposed one gene one enzyme theory 
  • 1944: Selman Abraham Waksman discovered streptomycin as antibiotic
  • 1945–1950: Animal tissue culture developed
  • 1947: transposable elements  by Barbara MacClintock
  • 1950: Chargaff rule
  • 1953: Double helix model by Watson and crick
  • 1957:Crick and Gamov studied ‘central dogma
  • 1972: First recombinant DNA molecule
  • 1973: Ames test
  • 1990: Human Genome Project commencement 
  • 1993: Kary Mulis developed PCR

Biotech Industries: 

  1.  Genentech Inc. : This Company produced somatostatin in a bacteria in 1977
  2.  Eli Lily : produced insulin using site directed Mutagenesis
  3. Chiron crop: developed recombinant vaccine for hepatitis
  4. Calgene Inc. : tomato polygalacturonase DNA used to synthesize antisense RNA
  5. Novo Nordisk : focus mainly on Diabetes and hormone replacement therapy
  6. Regeneron : Aims to develop largest gene sequencing
  7. Alexion : develop immune-regulatory drugs
  8. Biomarin  : Develop drugs for lysosomal storage disorder
  9. Alkermes : Treatment for central nervous disorder
  10. Ionis : Develop  RNA-based therapeutic products

 Top Indian Biotech Industries 

  1. Biocon Limited:  Manufacture biotechnology products
  2. Serum Institute of India: Worlds largest vaccine manufacturer
  3. Panacea Biotec : 3rd largest Biotech company

Scope of Biotechnology : 

Since, Biotechnology shares an integrated value with many other disciplines of science , it holds a very key and vital role in the field of science. The various fields associated with biotechnology is as follows 

“Biotechnology is the new brightest star in the field of techniques and Biology”- E Mithu  

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