Over the past two decades, we have witnessed many revolutionary innovations in the area of biotechnology that have transformed our lives in many ways and made the world a better place to live. With these inventions, now we can deal with many life-threatening diseases and farmers can produce better harvests. 2017 was especially good for research and development. Let’s take a look at the various biotechnology breakthroughs of the year enlisted by our biotechnology assignment help experts:
Microbiome are the millions of bacteria that live on our skin and inside our digestive tract. Microbiologists have found a way to use these useful bacteria for disease treatment. So, in the next few years, you are likely to find pills that might contain microbiomes that would enter into your bloodstream and help to fight disease-causing parasites and even cancerous cells.
Herbicide tolerant crops
Herbicides are the pesticides that are used for fighting weeds. But in most cases, these chemicals also hamper the quality and growth of the main crops. While genetic engineers have been growing herbicide-tolerant plants since 1996, but their nutritive quality was generally low. However, during 2017, scientists came up with a variety of herbicide-tolerant plants with high nutritive values.
Many people have to deal with genetic diseases or those caused due to gene mutations. But recently, scientists have found ways to shut off specific genes that would cause a disease. This method is referred to as gene therapy. During 2017, many parents went for gene therapy during the first four months of pregnancy. With the help of this technique, an offspring will get free from all the disease-causing genetic traits inherited from its parents. This technique is not just useful for human and animals, but also for plants.
Recently, scientists have found some useful drugs that would help in dealing with depression. These chemicals inhibit the action of depression receptors on nerve cells. And, the person who will take these anti-depression medicines for a certain period will never feel excessive anxiety again throughout the entire life.
We all know how long is the cancer diagnostic process. It often takes weeks and requires the patient to visit the pathologist on a regular basis. Moreover, until now, diagnosing cancer during its initial stage had been tough. But last year, biomedical scientists have found an easy and effective process called Liquid biopsy. In this process, a sample of blood is diagnosed for the presence of cell-free circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA), that is 100 times more abundant in the blood than tumor cells.
Visualization reality for surgery
These days, doctors rely on high-quality cameras and microscope oculars during a surgery. These high-definition cameras help in executing a surgery more precisely. During 2017, several world-class hospitals adopted these virtual reality tools and found an increase in success rates of operations.
In 2017, a group of MIT researchers developed an autonomous wheelchair that works on the patient's command. The person sitting on it just needs to give a verbal order such as “take me to the kitchen,” and it will follow the same. It is also capable of dealing with traffic in its path. While the current model is limited to indoor use, in future, we may find an upgraded version that would work well in the outdoors too.
Smart contact lenses
The University of California scientists have found a new way to treat Glaucoma, the second-leading cause of blindness. They have made a set of contact lenses that contain conducting wires to monitor pressure and fluid flow within the eyes. These wires will then transmit data to a computer device to give information about the cause of disease. The group of scientists expects that within the next few years, they will launch a better version of these contact lenses that will control the fluid flow and pressure on the retina to cure the disease.
This was a list of scientific breakthroughs in the area of biotechnology that took place in 2017. To know more about the topic, we suggest you to refer to the journals published by major research institutions of biotechnology across the world.