Project news

April 29, 2015

New Inventory Tracks Growth of Synthetic Biology Products and Applications

The Wilson Center’s Synthetic Biology Project has unveiled a new inventory to track products and applications using the emerging technology of synthetic biology.

The interactive inventory, which seeks to crowdsource expertise to provide the most accurate information about products, applications, companies and market status, finds the market rapidly advancing into food, agriculture, medicine, personal care products, chemicals and more. The inventory can be found here: http://www.synbioproject.org/cpi/

“As the U.S. government, the United Nations and other bodies start to grapple with the governance and regulation of synthetic biology, it is imperative to track the market and understand the sectors primed for growth,” says Dr. Todd Kuiken, a senior program associate with the Synthetic Biology Project. “As more products and platforms move onto the market, there will be increased demand for risk research to underpin regulatory decisions.”

Synthetic biology is a rapidly changing technology platform. The data represented in this inventory is a limited first attempt to compile a picture of the market and may not represent the most current developments in any particular product category, company or market status.

Registered users of the inventory can update current product information, upload supporting scientific studies and add new products. In the future, more information will be added to the inventory about required feedstocks for products and applications, potential agency-based regulatory authority, market values and lifecycle assessments.

The Wilson Center’s Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies manages a similar inventory (http://www.nanotechproject.org/cpi/) tracking the use of nanoscale materials in consumer products. First released in 2005, that inventory was updated in 2013 and has been widely cited to illustrate the growth of products utilizing nanotechnology. 

The Synthetic Biology Products and Applications Inventory can be found here: http://www.synbioproject.org/cpi/