Biotechnology In Space

Gilles Clement1'2 and Angie Bukley2

' Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Toulouse, France 2 Ohio University, Athens, Ohio, USA

Often praised as the most promising field for the commercial exploitation of space, this domain today has two primary fundamental aspects: the use of microgravity as a tool for separation processes and techniques (including protein crystals growth), and the production of cells for medically valuable proteins like immuno-reactive molecules, hormones, enzymes, and vaccines. Results of space experiments and their terrestrial applications are presented, and their advantages and disadvantages compared to Earth-based techniques, such as genetic engineering, are discussed.

Figure 8-01. A mouse-astronaut candidate poses atop a model solar panel. Source: http://science, nasa.gov/ headlines/y2004/20jan_ marsmice. htm. Credit: Marsgravity. org

Figure 8-01. A mouse-astronaut candidate poses atop a model solar panel. Source: http://science, nasa.gov/ headlines/y2004/20jan_ marsmice. htm. Credit: Marsgravity. org

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