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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

New Compounds from Microbe Interaction

Synthetic biology (WP Overview)  is of interest for product development, some readers of this blog have indicated an interest in how this domain could link to analytic methods.  You will see some pieces like the below appearing as I explore the domain.  Do chime in if you know of other resources.

When microbes join forces, useful new compounds emerge
In a recent paper, SFI External Professor Elhanen Borenstein and co-authors show that when living together, communities of microbial species commonly produce novel, potentially useful compounds that single species growing alone do not produce. They begin to define the mechanisms and time signatures of such "emergent biosynthetic capacities" and present a computational framework for modeling, exploring, tracking, and predicting this phenomenon in simple two-species communities.

Such enhanced metabolic capacities represent a promising route to many medical, environmental, and industrial applications and call for the development of a predictive, systems-level understanding of synergistic microbial capacity, the authors write. 

Full paper, technical but beginning paragraphs are useful and readable.

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