Chemical Synthetic Biology

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Chemistry plays a very important role in the emerging field of synthetic biology. In particular, chemical synthetic biology is concerned with the synthesis of chemical structures, such as proteins, that do not exist in nature. With contributions from leading international experts, Chemical Synthetic Biology shows how chemistry underpins synthetic biology. The book is an essential guide to this fascinating new field, and will find a place on the bookshelves of researchers and students working in synthetic chemistry, synthetic and molecular biology, bioengineering, systems biology, computational genomics, and bioinformatics.
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Additional Information

Publisher
John Wiley & Sons
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Published on
Feb 10, 2011
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Pages
392
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ISBN
9781119990307
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Language
English
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Genres
Science / Chemistry / Organic
Science / Life Sciences / Biochemistry
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Pier Luigi Luisi
For over a decade, a small group of scientists and philosophers& mdash;members of the Mind and Life Institute& mdash;have met regularly to explore the intersection between science and the spirit. At one of these meetings, the themes discussed were both fundamental and profound: can physics, chemistry, and biology explain the mystery of life? How do our philosophical assumptions influence science and the ethics we bring to biotechnology? And how does an ancient spiritual tradition throw new light on these questions?

Pier Luigi Luisi not only reproduces this dramatic, cross-cultural dialogue, in which world-class scientists, philosophers, and Buddhist scholars develop a holistic approach to the scientific exploration of reality, but also adds scientific background to their presentations, as well as supplementary discussions with prominent participants and attendees. Interviews with His Holiness the Karmapa, the Buddhist monk Matthieu Ricard, and the actor and longtime human rights advocate Richard Gere take the proceedings into new directions, enriching the material with personal viewpoints and lively conversation about such topics as the origin of matter, the properties of cells, the nature of evolution, the ethics of genetic manipulation, and the question of consciousness and ethics.

A keen study of character, Luisi incorporates his own amusing observations into this fascinating dialogue, painting a very human portrait of some of our greatest& mdash;and most intimidating& mdash;thinkers. Deeply textured and cleverly crafted, Mind and Life is an excellent opportunity for any reader to join in the debate surrounding this cutting-edge field of inquiry.

Richard Preston
“The bard of biological weapons captures
the drama of the front lines.”
-Richard Danzig, former secretary of the navy


The first major bioterror event in the United States-the anthrax attacks in October 2001-was a clarion call for scientists who work with “hot” agents to find ways of protecting civilian populations against biological weapons. In The Demon in the Freezer, his first nonfiction book since The Hot Zone, a #1 New York Times bestseller, Richard Preston takes us into the heart of Usamriid, the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick, Maryland, once the headquarters of the U.S. biological weapons program and now the epicenter of national biodefense.

Peter Jahrling, the top scientist at Usamriid, a wry virologist who cut his teeth on Ebola, one of the world’s most lethal emerging viruses, has ORCON security clearance that gives him access to top secret information on bioweapons. His most urgent priority is to develop a drug that will take on smallpox-and win. Eradicated from the planet in 1979 in one of the great triumphs of modern science, the smallpox virus now resides, officially, in only two high-security freezers-at the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta and in Siberia, at a Russian virology institute called Vector. But the demon in the freezer has been set loose. It is almost certain that illegal stocks are in the possession of hostile states, including Iraq and North Korea. Jahrling is haunted by the thought that biologists in secret labs are using genetic engineering to create a new superpox virus, a smallpox resistant to all vaccines.

Usamriid went into a state of Delta Alert on September 11 and activated its emergency response teams when the first anthrax letters were opened in New York and Washington, D.C. Preston reports, in unprecedented detail, on the government’s response to the attacks and takes us into the ongoing FBI investigation. His story is based on interviews with top-level FBI agents and with Dr. Steven Hatfill.

Jahrling is leading a team of scientists doing controversial experiments with live smallpox virus at CDC. Preston takes us into the lab where Jahrling is reawakening smallpox and explains, with cool and devastating precision, what may be at stake if his last bold experiment fails.
Pier Luigi Luisi
For over a decade, a small group of scientists and philosophers& mdash;members of the Mind and Life Institute& mdash;have met regularly to explore the intersection between science and the spirit. At one of these meetings, the themes discussed were both fundamental and profound: can physics, chemistry, and biology explain the mystery of life? How do our philosophical assumptions influence science and the ethics we bring to biotechnology? And how does an ancient spiritual tradition throw new light on these questions?

Pier Luigi Luisi not only reproduces this dramatic, cross-cultural dialogue, in which world-class scientists, philosophers, and Buddhist scholars develop a holistic approach to the scientific exploration of reality, but also adds scientific background to their presentations, as well as supplementary discussions with prominent participants and attendees. Interviews with His Holiness the Karmapa, the Buddhist monk Matthieu Ricard, and the actor and longtime human rights advocate Richard Gere take the proceedings into new directions, enriching the material with personal viewpoints and lively conversation about such topics as the origin of matter, the properties of cells, the nature of evolution, the ethics of genetic manipulation, and the question of consciousness and ethics.

A keen study of character, Luisi incorporates his own amusing observations into this fascinating dialogue, painting a very human portrait of some of our greatest& mdash;and most intimidating& mdash;thinkers. Deeply textured and cleverly crafted, Mind and Life is an excellent opportunity for any reader to join in the debate surrounding this cutting-edge field of inquiry.

Pier Luigi Luisi
The mechanism in which asignificant images arise—those images that suddenly appear in one’s mind, with no direct connection to the present moment—is the field being researched by Marcel, a neuroscience researcher and staunch rationalist who lives and works in a Zurich influenced by Jungian psychology. This is where he meets Anna, a musician, with whom he finally appears to have a vibrant and fulfilling relationship.
Before long, however, Anna and her world—music, art, Buddhist meditation—begin to insinuate doubts in Marcel’s mind on the validity of his rationalistic theories on mental processes. His restlessness increases when a particular asignificant image presents itself in his mind, reappearing incessantly: the face of a dark-haired, beautiful Latin woman, whom he recognizes to be that of a girl he met in Mexico 25 years ago—a love story that never began, due to adverse fortuitous circumstances.
Is this mysterious Mexican woman, whom he met by chance in Zurich, really that same girl he was in love with 25 years ago? Instinctively, without understanding the reasons behind his impulse, Marcel decides to leave for Mexico in search of that unlived romance, with the risk of losing everything he has. An absurd journey that leads him, however, to discover himself, reconstructing parts of his identity that had been lost—perhaps his son. Will he find the Mexican woman or will he find himself instead, and Anna?

Pier Luigi Luisi is Emeritus Professor at the Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETHZ) where he has taught for 30 years before being appointed Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Roma TRE. As Professor of Chemistry at ETHZ he initiated the interdisciplinary project “Cortona Week”. His main research interests lie in the experimental, theoretical, and philosophical fields related to the origin of life and the self-organization of natural and synthetic systems.
Gail R. Fleischaker
How did life begin on the Earth? The units of life are cells, which can be defined as bounded systems of molecules that capture energy and nutrients from the environment -- systems that expand, reproduce, and evolve over time, often into more complex systems. This book is the proceedings of a unique meeting, sponsored by NATO and held in Maratea, Italy, that brought together for the first time an international group of investigators who share an interest in how molecules self-assemble into supramolecular structures, and how those structures may have contributed to the origin of life.
The book is written at a moderately technical level, appropriate for use by researchers and by students in upper-level undergraduate and graduate courses in biochemistry and molecular biology. The overall interest of its subject matter provides an excellent introduction for students who wish to understand how the foundational knowledge of chemistry and physics can be applied to one of the most fundamental questions now facing the scientific community.
The editors are pioneers in defining what we mean by the living state, particularly the manner in which simple molecular systems can assume complex associations and functions, including the ability to reproduce. Each chapter of the book presents an up-to-date report of highly significant research. Two of the authors received medals from the National Academy of Science USA in 1994, and other research reported in the book has been featured in internationally recognized journals such Scientific American, Time, and Discover.
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