A Timeline of Biotech and Synthetic Biology

by piero scaruffi | (contact)

An appendix to the chapter on Biotech
All of these events are explained in my book "Intelligence is not Artificial".

Slide presentation "Biotech"

TM, ®, Copyright © 2017 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.



1964: Harvey Nathanson at Westinghouse makes the first MEMS (micro-electro-mechanical system)
1969: Jon Beckwith isolates a gene
1973: Stanley Cohen and Herbert Boyer create the first recombinant DNA organism
1974: Waclaw Szybalski coins the term "synthetic biology"
1976: Genentech is founded
1979: Stephen Terry at Stanford builds the first “lab-on-a-chip"
1980: Genentech’s IPO, first biotech IPO
1982: The first biotech drug, Humulin, is approved for sale (Eli Lilly + Genentech)
1983: Kary Mullis invents the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for copying genes
1983: Richard Feynman’s lecture "Infinitesimal Machinery“
1986: Leroy Hood invents a way to automate gene sequencing
1986: Mario Capecchi performs gene editing on a mouse
1990: William French Anderson’s gene therapy
1994: FlavrSavr Tomato 
1994: Srinivasan Chandrasegaran invents ZFN to edit genomes
1994: Affymetrix introduces the first "DNA chip" (or microarray)
1996: Ian Wilmut clones the first mammal, the sheep Dolly
1997: DARPA’s Microflumes program to fund research in microfluidics
Microfluidics: the ability to make millions of microchannels
1999: Agilent introduces the first commercial "lab-on-a-chip" product
2002: Wilhelm Ansorge at EMBL develops the amicroarray with the whole human genome
2002: Eckard Wimmer creates the first synthetic virus
2003: Dario Campana's method to make CAR-T cells
2003: The Human Genome Project is completed
2004: The first international conference on Synthetic Biology is held at the MIT
2004: First commercial microarrays of the whole human genome (Affymetrix, Agilent, Applied Biosystems, Illumina, NimbleGen)
2005: Jay Keasling (UC Berkeley) artificially produces artemisinin acid
2005: Drew Endy’s “Foundations for Engineering Biology”
2005: Fyodor Urnov uses ZFN to edit human DNA
2007: Personal genomics (Knome, 23andMe)
2007: Shinya Yamanaka converts adult human cells into pluripotent stem cells.
2009: Jean Bennett's gene therapy restores vision in Corey Haas
2010: Craig Venter and Hamilton Smith (Maryland) reprogram a bacterium's DNA
2010: Cheap printers for living beings (OpenPCR, Cambrian Genomics)
2010: Carl June's CAR-T therapy
2011: The TALEN technique for genome editing (Dan Voytas, Adam Bogdanove)
2012: Markus Covert (Stanford) simulates an entire living organism in software
2012: Cloud-based biotech (Transcriptic)
2012: Jennifer Doudna (UC Berkeley ) and Emmanuelle Charpentier (Sweden) develop the CRISPR-cas9 technique for genome editing
2012: the first gene-therapy treatment approved in the West, Glybera by UniQure
2013: Shoukhrat Mitalipov creates human embryonic stem cells from cloned embryos
2014: Jef Boeke synthesizes a chromosome (in yeast)
2015: Cellectis cures leukaemia in Layla Richards using TALENS editing
2015: Katsuhiko Hayashi's in vitro gametogenesis
2016: David Liu’s base editing
2017: First gene therapy for cancer treatment approved in the USA
2017: Shoukhrat Mitalipov repairs a genetic mutation in human embryos that causes a heart disease

Reading material:
TM, ®, Copyright © 2017 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.