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Glossary of Terms

Look here for definitions of terms and references.
  1. Biotech Business Terms (9)
  2. Diseases (6)

What is DNA?
What is the importance of the biomolecule known as DNA?

Use of DNA microinjection techniques for gene transfer and creation of transgenic animals.

Recombinant is a term used to describe a protein engineering technique which involves combining DNA strands from different origins.

A definition for the term extremophile.

Labile has different meanings in the various scientific disciplines. Find out the biomedical definition for labile as it relates to protein stability and degradation.

Active Ingredients
Active ingredients refers to the chemical makeup of drugs.

A definition of the term thermophilic, as it applies to biotechnology research and industrial applications using microorganisms and their enzymes from extreme environments.

An explanation for the word sequester as it is applied in scientific terms for the biotechnology and bioremediation industries.

VOCs definition

Xenotransplantation is a controversial organ transplant practice.

Smart Polymers
An explanation of how smart polymers are specially designed stimulus-responsive macromolecules with an unlimited number of potential applications in biotechnology.

An explanation for what polymers are and their monomer composition. A definition including descriptions of different types of natural (carbohydrate, protein) and synthetic (plastics) polymers.

Translational Research
A definition for the biomedical term translational research.

A definition of bioremediation.

Definitions for fermentation in both general and more scientific terms.

The term bioethics defined.

A descriptive definition of ligands and the role they play in biotechnology and biochemistry.

Conjugation in bacteria defined.

Definition of nanomedicine.

Definition of nanotechnology.

Liposomes are phospholipid bilayers that have formed a closed vesicle.

Transformation refers to changes in the genetic makeup of a normal cell.

What is the Precautionary Principle?
People use the Precautionary Principle every day without even knowing it. Find out how it is used in risk assessment, particularly of new biotech applications, where there are a lot of unknowns.

What are Vero Cells?
An explanation of the vero cell line and the use of vero cells in generating vaccines.

What is the PCT?
How does the PCT help biotechnology innovation?

What is Venture Capital?
An explanation of venture capital.

What is Zoning?
An explanation of what zoning is, and how it affects commercial land use.

What is Orphan Drug Status?
Orphan Drug Status is given to certain drugs undergoing development in the pharmaceutical industry. Find out what Orphan Drug Status is and what incentives are available to biotech companies obtaining this designation from the US FDA.

What is Sustainability?
These days businesses are obsessed with the concept of sustainability, but is it as a means of saving money, or the environment?

What is a Meta-Analysis?
The term meta-analysis is used often in the business world, but what exactly does it mean in the biotech industry?

Theory Behind the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR)
Learn the basic theory behind the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technique for making multiple copies of a gene from a DNA sample.

Stem Cells
Why are scientists and doctors intrigued by stem cell research and what are the potential benefits?

What are Transcription Factors?
Transcription factors are important molecules, usually proteins, involved in controlling gene expression by RNA polymerase. In eukaryotic cells they bind to promoter regions on the DNA.

Restriction Enzymes Explained
An explanation of a special class of enzymes known as the restriction endonucleases.

An explanation of what enzymes are and a brief description of what they do for cells.

What is a Protein?
A quick explanation of what proteins are made of and the role they play in cells.

What is a Clone?
In genetic engineering, what does it mean to create a clone?

Tools for Protein Engineering
Essential laboratory procedures that enable us to study and engineer proteins.

The Human Genome Project
In 1990, a project was initiated to determine the entire sequence of DNA making up the human genome. The project involved participants from laboratories worldwide and resulted in significant advances in DNA screening and sequencing technologies, in addition to the discovery of thousands of new genes.

Six Types of Phytoremediation
Phytoremediation is a form of bioremediation and applies to all chemical or physical processes that involve plants for degrading or immobilizing contaminants in soil and ground water.

A definition of the term epigenetics, and how epigenetic marks in eukaryotes control transcription. Also discussed are the relationships between studies of how gene expression is regulated, stem cell research, and cloning.

The term transgenic defined, in reference to genetically modified organisms and how they are altered.

Knockouts Biotech Style
Gene knockouts are useful tools for studying the causes of genetic diseases, but what exactly are they?

A definition for titer as it applies to the biomedical industry and production of antibodies, proteins, antibiotics and other bioproducts.

Specific Activity
A definition of specific activity as it applies to proteins and enzyme catalyzed reactions.

PCR defined.

DNA Fingerprinting
Explanation of the term DNA fingerprinting with alternate names and mention of the various approaches to the technique.

An explanation of RFLP and brief description of the methodology.

A definition for enzyme hydrolysis, to explain what kind of biochemical reaction hydrolases catalyze and how they are useful for biotechnology applications.

A definition of lyophilization as it applies to the preservation and storage of microbial cell cultures.

Arrays are a versatile high throughput tool for analysis in the life sciences.

A method for transforming cells.

Gel electrophoresis is a DNA separation technique, but how does it work?

A quick discussion on what IPSCs are and how they are used in stem cell research, regenerative medicine and tissue engineering.

Blastocyst definition and description.

Regenerative Medicine
What does regenerative medicine have to do with stem cell research?

Therapeutic Cloning
Definition for therapeutic cloning.

Definition for pluripotent.

Vectors are tools for gene transfer during cloning.

What is Proteomics?
Studying complex mixtures of proteins.

What is siRNA and how is RNA interference used in protein engineering?

A brief description of transcription as it applies to either prokaryotic or eukaryotic cells.

The genetic term polymorphism refers to the discovery that there may be several variations in gene sequence for a specific protein.

Green Fluorescent Protein
Green fluorescent protein (GFP, from jellyfish) and other fluorescent proteins have become important bioindicators in biomedical and biotechnology research.

Tissue Engineering
Bioengineering methods to control cellular processes in aggregates of cells.

HDPs, or AMPs are a special kinds of peptides that play a role in immunity to microorganisms and host defenses.

Genomics is the name given to the study of whole genomes.

The role of plasmids as vectors for gene transfer.

The second step in the protein synthesis process, wherein the genetic code carried by mRNA is translated by ribosomes into a polypeptide sequence.

What is miRNA, or microRNA and how is it used as a molecular genetics research tool in the process called RNA interference?

Reverse Transcriptase PCR
RT-PCR can mean one of two things in biotechnology. Here's one of the definitions.

Real-Time PCR
RT-PCR can refer to one of two different types of PCR, one of which is real-time PCR.

What are GMOs?
GMOs are making news nearly every day and issues surrounding their safety are a source of ongoing debate in the food and biotechnology industry. Read about what GMOs are and why they are a source of bioethical controversy.

What is miRNA?
What is miRNA, or microRNA and how is it used as a molecular genetics research tool in the process called RNA interference?

What is a Retrovirus?
Retroviruses are a special type of RNA virus, that differ from the rest in how they replicate their genome.

What are Bioindicators?
An introduction to bioindicators and how they are used in the biotechnology industry to detect physiological responses to cellular stressors.

Carbon nanotubes and buckyballs belong to a class of carbon-based nanoparticles known as the fullerenes.

Nanoshells are used in nanomedicine as a tool for radiation therapy because of their ability to target tumors.

Dendrimers are highly branched nanoparticles whose polymer branches consist of molecular hooks that can target specific biomolecules.

Liquid Crystals
Liquid crystal pharmaceuticals (LCPs) are drug delivery systems that use organic liquid crystals for safe drug delivery.

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