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ENABLING TECHNOLOGIES ROADMAP STUDY FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF INNOVATION, INDUSTRY, SCIENCE & RESEARCH

December 2011

Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study

December 2011

TABLE OF CONTENTS
1.0 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 1.1. Key Findings and Considerations 2.0 INTRODUCTION 3.0 KEY TRENDS AND DRIVERS 3.1. Globalisation 3.2. Energy and the Environment 3.3. Resource Efficiency and Waste Management 3.4. Ageing Population 3.5. Changing Consumer Needs 4.0 ENABLING TECHNOLOGIES SUMMARY TABLE 5.0 NANOTECHNOLOGY 5.1. Nanotechnology Global Market Overview 5.2. Nanotechnology Analysis 5.3. Drivers 5.4. Opportunities 5.5. Barriers 5.6. Risks 5.7. Disruptive Potential 5.8. Nanotools and Platforms 5.9. Manufactured Nanomaterials and Components 5.10. Nanodevices and Systems 1 3 6 9 9 9 10 10 11 12 15 16 19 22 23 26 30 32 33 37 47 54 55 57 58 59

6.0 BIOTECHNOLOGY 6.1. Biotechnology Global Market Overview 6.2. Drivers 6.3. Opportunities 6.4. Barriers

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Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study

December 2011

6.5. Risks 6.6. Disruptive Potential 6.7. Emerging Biotechnology Techniques 6.8. Biotechnology Applications 7.0 SYNTHETIC BIOLOGY 7.1. Synthetic Biology Global Market Overview 7.2. Drivers 7.3. Opportunities 7.4. Barriers 7.5. Risks 7.6. Disruptive Potential 7.7. Synthetic Biology Applications 8.0 CONTRIBUTION TO ADDRESSING AUSTRALIA’S MAJOR NATIONAL CHALLENGES 8.1. Mining Boom 8.2. Climate Change 8.3. Increasing Demand for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Sources 8.4. Sustainable Use of Natural Resources 8.5. Ageing of the Population and Health 8.6. Food Security 8.7. Biosecurity 8.8. Global Competitiveness and Productivity of Australian Industry 8.9. National Defence and Security 8.10. Summary

60 61 62 69 93 94 96 97 98 101 106 107 118 118 121 124 132 134 144 148 149 154 159 165 165 166 166 167

9.0 INFLUENCES AFFECTING THE ADOPTION OF ENABLING TECHNOLOGIES 9.1. Challenges in the Uptake of Enabling Technologies in Australia 9.2. Market-pull Commercialisation 9.3. Absorptive Capacity 9.4. Government Support for Research and Enabling Technologies
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Product Innovation versus Market Innovation 9. Radical and Transformational Innovation 9.8. Incremental.12. Collaboration between Research and Industry Sectors 9.10.0 LIST OF ACRONYMS 11. 9.6.7. 9.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 9.11. Convergence of Technologies 9. Knowledge of Enabling Technologies 9. Regulatory Environment Intellectual Property Rights Ethical Considerations 168 170 170 171 172 172 174 179 183 185 10.5.0 REFERENCE LIST © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence .9.

These three types of enabling technologies have been selected as they are considered fundamental to a wide range of research and development (R&D) across a wide number of areas. health. services and systems.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 1. However. The enabling technologies of nanotechnology. challenges and their disruptive potential. Many of the global challenges being faced could potentially be resolved through harnessing the outputs of these enabling technologies.and nano. the environment. energy. They have the potential to revolutionise science. horizon 2 (lab bench) and horizon 3 (blue sky). barriers. resources. the bio. Disruptive potential refers to impact of the new technologies on existing manufacturing © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 1 . The technologies and their applications are described in terms of their development at horizon 1 (already being commercialised). opportunities. which is a form of advanced biotechnology. with an emphasis on horizon 2 and horizon 3 developments. and through successful translation and commercialisation of new products. Under the Strategy. biotechnologies and synthetic biology. outlines a roadmap that provides a view into the future of nanotechnologies. carried out under the auspices of the Expert Forum. markets and investment opportunities.0 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY In the next ten to twenty years. converging with information technologies and cognitive science. New applications arising from these enabling technologies are expected to emerge as a result of advancement in these areas. including areas of convergence. biotechnology and synthetic biology.enabling technologies. This report. both in Australia and globally. risks. and support the development of appropriate policy and regulatory frameworks. The National Enabling Technology Strategy (NETS) was established in 2009 to provide a framework to support the responsible development of enabling technologies. industry and the consumer. The ETRM is supported by information and data on each of the enabling technology areas including drivers. will have a significant impact on society. products. are the subject of this enabling technologies roadmap (ETRM) study. enabling technologies also raise specific challenges themselves which must be identified and addressed as these technologies become more readily available. consumer products and manufacturing processes. an Expert Forum was established with the responsibility to undertake foresighting activities to identify ways in which the enabling technologies might contribute to addressing major global and national challenges. and provides readers with insights into the development of new applications that are informing future strategies.

However. including access to funding. Biotechnology is defined as the application of science and technology to living organisms and products of living organisms. It converges with nanotechnology in that it involves molecular engineering at the nanoscale. the biotechnology industry faces many barriers to success. to produce knowledge. an advanced form of biotechnology. there are many factors to be considered and challenges to be overcome in adopting nanotechnologies which are highlighted in this study. chemistry. goods and services. The report then proceeds to discuss factors influencing the adoption of enabling technologies and their potential to address major national challenges. Nanotechnology researchers are focusing on a range of issues to improve the performance.and structure-dependent properties and phenomena. and computer science. skills and regulatory issues. However. particularly on manufactured nanomaterials (intentionally produced for commercial purposes to have specific properties or specific composition) has shown the potential to have a widespread impact in health. including applications in: © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 2 . chemistry. and sustainability of a range of nanotechnologies in a variety of emerging and converging applications. energy and many other fields. Research. industries and markets. The ISO (TS27687/TS80004-2) defines nanotechnology as ‘the application of scientific knowledge to manipulate and control matter in the nanoscale in order to make use of size. integration. multi-functionality. is an emerging field of research that combines elements of biology. information. Nanotechnology. physics and engineering. Synthetic biology. most important of which are those that affect the development of appropriate research and technology transfer capability. advancements in biotechnology are expected to achieve significant advances in genomic information and genetic engineering. the potential promise of synthetic biology is immense. Whilst the timeframes are longer than that of nanotechnology and biotechnology. involves the manipulation of matter on the nanometer scale (1nm to 100nm). genetics. and the development of a number of biological based products such as bioplastics. engineering. It is a multidisciplinary field encompassing biology. In the next decade.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 processes. nanodevices and nanosystems with unprecedented properties and functionality. increased yield of plant and animal foods. as distinct from those associated with individual atoms or molecules or with bulk materials. new developments in therapeutics and personalised medicine. This will result in a suite of new manufactured nanomaterials (material with any external dimension in the nanoscale or having internal structure or surface structure in the nanoscale). systems. biocatalysts and advanced biofuels.

component materials and reagents. Agriculture and food 4. pharmaceuticals and diagnostics  Energy efficiency and clean energy technologies. Clean energy and biofuels 2. agriculture and mining. Discussions of opportunities. including improved battery storage. risks and barriers in this paper indicate that the development of new enabling technology applications. Medicine and health 5. some applications are expected to come to market within a few years.1. and systems integration and intelligence. Australia possesses world-class enabling technology strengths (such as world leading research organisations) with the prospect to lead future developments and market applications. industry and the broader community. dentistry. the pace of acceleration of synthetic biology is likely to increase dramatically in the years ahead. involving applications in medicine. improved solar cells. particularly as a result of the impact of climate change  Health care. Key Findings and Considerations For Australia to have the ability to resolve major national challenges and remain globally competitive against advanced and emerging economies in research. Pollution control and remediation 3. structures. and is expected to impact many products and services. and micropower supplies for personal electronics This ETRM examines these applications in terms of tools and platforms. it will need a clear strategy and policy agenda to capitalise on its existing comparative advantages in these domains. scientific know-how and product innovation that incorporate enabling technologies. and their subsequent adoption and utilisation to address key national challenges will require close collaboration between government.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 1.1. devices and applications.1. which will become increasingly important in both urban areas. 1. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 3 . Biosensors While most of the outputs of synthetic biology remain in early stages of development. However. Nanotechnology Applications derived from nanotechnologies are expected to make a significant contribution to diverse fields such as:  Water purification and treatment. 1. their translation into valuable outcomes for industry and society.

Vocabulary). and the development of bio-chips (lab on a chip) involved in monitoring health. future innovation in biotechnology. risks that might be posed by nanotechnologies are being assessed to see if current regulations are adequate. nanotechnology involves engineered nanoparticles to form manufactured nanomaterials. Although nanoparticles occur naturally. Biotechnology and nanotechnology are converging into a new field known as nanobiotechnology. including industrial biotechnology. This field of study includes third generation DNA sequencing that incorporates nanopores. Furthermore.2. will continue to contribute in a range of fields. replacing petroleum derived products  Diagnostics  Human therapeutics. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 4 . and may pose risks through inhalation. Both nano-ecotoxicology (toxicity to the environment and ecological systems) and nano-genotoxicology (toxicity to human health) are being developed to evaluate the global impact of these new technologies. genetic modifications of crops and treatments of diseases and pests  Biofuels  Bioinformatics  Chemical and plastics industry feedstock. in which all the major regulators are involved. it is subject to extensive regulation which deals with both health and safety and ethical issues. Biotechnology Although a more mature technology than nanotechnology. and comparative cost structures in industrial biotechnology. including:  Agriculture. the International Organisation for Standardization (ISO) has created two nanotechnology standards.1. Safety and Environment Working Party of NETS.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Through the Health. 1. including stem cell therapies and regenerative medicine  Reagents and other active molecules. Biotechnology faces considerable cost barriers for successful commercialisation through clinical trials in medical biotechnologies.Terminology and definitions for nano-objects) and ISO/TS80004 (Nanotechnologies . As biotechnology is the application of technology to living organisms. ISO/TS27687 (Nanotechnologies . dermal penetration or environmental persistence.

including vaccines  Food additives  Environmental remediation  Biosensors  Genome engineering Synthetic biology raises both ethical and regulatory concerns. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 5 .3.1. such as unanticipated adverse effects on human health and the environment. including algae-based products  Hydrogen fuel  Biohydrometallurgy in mining  Regenerative and personalised medicine. involving molecular engineering at the nanoscale. and the use of synthetic biology for the enhancement of human performance.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 1. Applications using synthetic biology also raise new concerns about national security and biosecurity. Potential applications include:  Biofuels. Synthetic Biology Synthetic biology is an advanced form of biotechnology that incorporates and extends nanobiotechnology.

What is currently under development (lab bench) with expected commercialisation within the next decade (horizon 2) 3. risks. This report outlines possibilities (especially across horizon 2 and 3) which may or may not be achieved. opportunities. The roadmap also aims to examine the potential for the enabling technologies to address Australia’s major national challenges including climate change. and relating this to the particular context of developments in Australia. This Enabling Technologies Roadmap (ETRM) seeks to identity: 1. Potential benefits will need to be considered against any risk and concerns. barriers.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 2. The roadmap aims to outline enabling technology issues that may arise in terms of drivers. industries and markets). energy use. biotechnology and synthetic biology. nanotechnology) technologies in literature describing this emerging field. New and enabling technologies. health and ageing. This includes areas of technology intersection and those enabled by information and communication technology (ICT) and cognitive science. analysed and discussed through three separate perspectives. national security and leveraging the mining boom. and the degree to which they can be appropriately managed. robotics.0 INTRODUCTION The Australian National Enabling Technologies Strategy (NETS) Expert Forum is focused on new forms of nanotechnology. information. leading to the successful commercialisation of value-added goods and services. providing a horizon scan of what is currently commercialised (horizon 1) 2.greater than 20 years) technologies and applications (horizon 3). The result of this roadmap is intended to help guide the development of a portfolio of priority national investments in these enabling technologies to help sustain Australia’s global competitiveness in scientific and technological knowledge. The scope of this project includes a desktop review and foresight exercise to assess the potential development. and disruptive potential (the potential to disrupt existing industrial processes. each of these enabling technologies are described. Long-term (blue sky . These new enabling technologies are also often referred to as NBIC (nano-bio-info-cogno) or GRIN (genetics. biotechnology and synthetic biology. direction and adoption of new and converging enabling technologies that are relevant both in Australia and internationally. Although significant overlap and convergence exists between nanotechnology. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 6 . giving both a global perspective. resource efficiency.

opportunities. Also addressed is the increased global pressure on natural resources. and climate change. demographic trends such as changing consumer needs and ageing populations. and the need for improved and sustainable resource use and waste management. Sections 5. Major drivers. Australia is and will face a number of major national challenges.0 considers how the enabling technologies identified in this roadmap might make a significant contribution to the major challenges faced by Australia. These include major international and geopolitical trends. risks and disruptive potential are discussed for each segment.0.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Key trends and drivers that influence the development and application of emerging enabling technologies are outlined in Section 3. the environment. A further trend is increasing consumer activism around ethics.0. and health and safety issues associated with new technologies. Increasing convergence of disciplines was identified as a common theme among and between all technology areas.0 provide a scan of enabling technologies. biotechnology and synthetic biology. It examines the challenges to uptake of enabling © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 7 . and will require a response that addresses Australia’s distinct national circumstances. respectively. barriers. Many of these challenges are global in their nature. Both currently and continuing into the future.0 presents a concluding discussion of the factors that influence the adoption and utilisation of enabling technologies. The discussion takes into account the opportunities.0 are as follows:  Capturing opportunities from the mining boom  Impacts of climate change  Increasing demand for energy  Sustainable use of natural resources  Ageing of the population  Food security  Biosecurity  Global competitiveness and productivity of Australian industry  National defence Section 9.0 and 7. segmented by nanotechnology. but will present unique problems for Australia.0. such as increased competition from emerging economies in the technology sector. The major national challenges identified and considered in Section 8. with focus placed on horizon 2 and horizon 3 developments. risks and barriers specific to these new and emergent enabling technologies. 6. Section 8. Addressing these challenges will be vital to ensure the future growth and prosperity of the nation. The technology scan is compiled into a summary table of emerging technologies in Section 4.

governments and the private sector are also major themes in the successful commercialisation and adoption of enabling technologies. Another major factor is the regulation of the technologies to manage environmental health and safety issues. injury and degenerative diseases. Convergence of technologies and disciplines. as well as to the treatment of genetic disorders. and collaboration between researchers. Safety and Environment Working Party of NETS. and address complex societal challenges depends on major market barriers and drivers. which are being addressed by regulators through the Health. disabilities.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 technologies in Australia including the move from technology-push to market-pull commercialisation and issues of absorptive capacity. and Australia’s active participation in major international collaboration on these issues. Finally the ETRM will also examine ethical issues that are likely to arise in relation to the application of the enabling technologies to human enhancement. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 8 . The ability for these technologies to provide new products and services. and the subject of a range of government initiatives that will impact on the uptake of the enabling technologies.

social. cultural and environmental perspective. educate people. will continue to grow and develop through the influence of developing nations such as China.2. increased demand for alternative energy sources will emerge in order to power the needs of the increasing global population and the industries that supply their products and services. water. energy. Energy and the Environment Existing fossil fuel supplies will diminish significantly over the next twenty years. including food. Russia and parts of South America. Therefore. thus speeding the process of globalisation. products. and services to solve these broad societal issues and challenges. although currently in a state of fluctuation. Many broad societal factors will interact with enabling technologies.1. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 9 . India. water and consumer products. Globalisation The global economy. Globalisation means that Australian policy strategies cannot be developed in isolation of the global economy. renewable in nature and possessing a low or negligible carbon emission in the whole lifecycle of energy production. conduct business. resources. The increased spread and speed of knowledge transfer has further opened global markets and increased competition. 3. The digital information economy has significantly changed the way communities communicate. iron ore and coal will remain elevated. The effects of globalisation play an important role in the formulation of policies to support industry sectors such as those discussed in this report. 3. Future alternative energy systems will be characterised as predominantly clean. Insights into where Australia fits into the overall enabling technologies value chain must be gained to better understand where Australian industry can leverage its expertise to maximise value for the nation. industry and society will behave from an economic. minerals. This will be predominantly driven by their increasing demand for a number of commodities and products. Many companies have already shifted or will shift their focus towards the needs of these developing nations.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 3. For example. energy. track the movement of diseases and monitor changing environmental conditions. the Chinese economy will continue to expand rapidly in the next decade and its demand for food.0 KEY TRENDS AND DRIVERS Over the next ten to twenty years a number of key trends and drivers will influence enabling technologies and their potential to revolutionise the way people. This will significantly influence the development of new emergent and converging technologies.

3. particularly those associated with the management of chronic © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 10 . telehealth and the ability of new nano devices to monitor health in the home will support this shift. recycling and reuse characteristics. including aged lifestyle and aged care needs. Future design for manufacture will need to take into consideration the full lifecycle of new products. including packaging. As a result. Increased life expectancy among humans will also influence healthcare. Ageing Population Australia’s ageing population will shift consumer demands. environmental degradation and waste were externalised to be absorbed by the natural environment. 3. and feedstock for energy production. supporting older Australians to remain in their own homes and neighbourhoods while receiving heath care and social support. through the increased demand for medical products and services. many costs to industry associated with pollution. will be a key focus in future business and government decision-making. such as biogas. fertiliser. maximise recycling and consider re-use using a “cradle-to-cradle” strategy rather than a “cradle-to-grave” approach. These costs are increasingly being factored into production systems and human habitats. Resource Efficiency and Waste Management Organic and inorganic waste continues to grow and is becoming a significant burden on local government authorities and a number of industries. 3.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Environmental responsibility through new regulations and society’s changing attitudes for lower carbon emissions will have a significant impact on industry. particularly ecosystems that are currently under threat. particularly towards healthcare products and related applications. Fast moving consumer goods and other products and services will require redesign to minimise the waste elements. Society and governments will continue to demand increased environmental responsibility from consumers and industry to reduce the impact of climate change on the planet. protection of the natural environment. Furthermore.4. new regulations are emerging providing guidelines for managing and treating waste. There is an emerging view that the flow of funds needs to shift from stand-alone aged care facilities to ‘ageing in place’. whereas in the past. Markets are dictating a move towards minimal or no packaging and the use of biodegradable or recyclable materials for new products. including extraction of value-added bioactives. Organic waste has many beneficial uses if managed and processed appropriately. Manufacturing businesses will increasingly become more responsible for the management of waste emanating from the products they develop. The uptake of eHealth.

Demand for raw materials to develop the products and services of the future will increase. Furthermore. Changing Consumer Needs As the global population continues to grow and urbanise over the next ten to twenty years. energy and water. Caring for Older Australians. Buyer behaviours will continue to influence global markets through the ability of consumers to source products and services via the internet.1 3. While food availability is not expected to cause too much concern within Australia. 1 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 11 . and DIISR. The shortage of rare earth elements and diminishing essential raw materials will require replacement and substitution that can only be achieved through revolutionary strategies. basic commodities. mass transportation. requiring new approaches to funding aged care services. Report of the Foresight Workshop on the Uptake of Enabling Assistive Technologies in Aged Care. 2011. Satisfying the increased global demand for food will require novel practices throughout the supply chain. consumers will demand new leisure goods. food. globally. August. electronics. improved health products and services. placing pressure on existing commodity prices.5. the ageing population is placing increased pressure on pension funds. particularly in distribution. telecommunications. Productivity Commission.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 diseases that increase with ageing. food shortages are expected to have a major impact. The demands for future food production stimulated by a growing global population will require increased agricultural infrastructure and productivity. June 2011. resulting in increased market competition and greater control of the value chain by consumers.

health. plastics and pulp and paper. The results of this roadmap will help to guide the development of a portfolio of priority national investments in these enabling technologies. barriers. rather than through consultation with industry. issues related to the development of enabling technologies straddle jurisdictional and portfolio boundaries. to provide an overview of the enabling technologies and their applications.enabling technologies has been identified by conducting a comprehensive review of academic literature. the roadmap of the emergent bio. NETS’s aim has been to improve the management and regulation of biotechnology and nanotechnology in order to maximise community confidence and community benefits from the use of new technology. requiring national coordination.0 ENABLING TECHNOLOGIES SUMMARY TABLE The NETS program was established in 2009 to provide a framework to support the responsible development and uptake of enabling technologies. industry research databases. the enabling technologies are defined as having the following characteristics: © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 12 . a Summary Table of these technologies and their applications has been developed to provide a ‘ready reference’ for the range of developments in this rapidly emerging area of advanced technology. but also including horizon 1 (already being commercialised). biotechnologies and synthetic biology can enable other areas of science and technology.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 4. biotechnologies and synthetic biology (which is a form of advanced biotechnology involving molecular engineering at the nanoscale). As noted in the Strategy. challenges and disruptive potential are discussed for the three main technology segments: nanotechnologies. For the purposes of this ETRM. and because their commercial uptake is as yet in its infancy. and publicly available reports from relevant industry bodies. These enabling technologies are expected to impact on and enable other technologies and applications in many different industry sectors including manufacturing. In developing the ETRM some difficulty was experienced in separating out horizon 2 and 3 technology developments and therefore a grey zone exists between the two horizons resulting in potential overlap. converging to produce new research and technology developments for different and varied applications.and nano. opportunities. Nanotechnologies. agriculture and food. As enabling technologies span different industry sectors. risks. chemicals. Major drivers. Drawing on technology scans that focus on horizon 2 (lab bench) and horizon 3 (blue sky). energy.

social and political impacts  Have the potential for development of new capabilities that address existing problems  Open up new possibilities and markets  Create new opportunities for responses to global issues.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Show high interdisciplinarity  Are transformative in nature and have the potential to disrupt or create entire industries  Have the potential for significant. To assist in understanding the interdependent and overlapping nature of the technologies and their applications. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 13 . highlighting key horizon 1. Although the Roadmap focuses on nanotechnology. Figure 1: Enabling Technologies Roadmap Framework Source: AIC. the enabling technologies are also converging with developments in ICT and cognitive technologies in a range of fields that includes energy. 2 and 3 developments and applications globally. 2011 Table 1 outlines a summary of the ETRM providing a future outlook. medicine education and human enhancement linked to strategic defence applications. systemic and long-lasting economic. the framework of the enabling technologies roadmap adopts a four-stage development. biotechnology and synthetic biology. as outlined in Figure 1.

Biotechnology and Synthetic Biology DEVELOPMENT AREA HORIZON 1 . Devices photovoltaics and Applications  Pest resistance and herbicide tolerance  Marker assisted selection  Somatic cell nuclear transfer (livestock)  Bioinformatics  Integrated energy storage systems  Solid state lighting  Biological electronic interfaces (RFID)  Pharmocogenomics  Drug delivery systems  Synthetic tissues  Fuel cells  Biomimetic design processes  Biofabrication templates  Directed self-assembly systems  Tissue engineering systems  Metabolic pathway engineering  Nanoinformatics  Nanocomputing  Geoengineering  Nanobiotechnology  Cognitive science integration Systems Integration and Intelligence  Biofuels  Bioplastics  Cell-based therapies  Nanohydrogen production and storage  Personalised medicine and therapeutics Source: Australian Institute for Commercialisation. 2011 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 14 .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Table 1: Developments and Applications in Nanotechnology.>2020  Biomolecular engineering and design tools  Genomic engineering Tools and Platforms  Biological detection and  Nanolithography analysis tools  Nanofabrication tools  In silica modelling and  Molecular & genomic simulation tools engineering  Nanoscale components  Nanomaterials  Atomic force microscopy  Regenerative medicine  Functional nanomaterials  Engineered functional genomes  Biomaterials  Biocatalysts  Nanomotors  Advanced stem cell technology  Biohydrometallurgy  Synthesis of active nanostructures  Nanoscaffolds  Smart medical devices  Smart implants  Nanoarrays  Biosensors  Composite structures  Advanced semiconductors  Holographic memory  Bioremediation  Functional biological nanostructures  Self-powered devices  Nanomachines  Nanorobots  Advanced composite ceramics  Nano-based semiconductors  Nanotribology  Nanojoining  Nanosensors  Microbial enhanced oil recovery  Metamaterials  Biocompatible nanomaterials  Advanced enzymes Components. Materials and Reagents  Nano powders  Nanowires  Thermoelectric devices  Agrosensors  Passive nanoscale structures  Biological detection devices  Stem cell therapies  Smart glazing  Nanostructured organic Structures.NOW HORIZON 2 .2011 TO 2020 HORIZON 3 .

according to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). Innovation and Skills. J. formal and informal education assets. Salerno. 3 The potential opportunities associated with nanotechnologies have led to significant investment by governmental institutions.A.. Technological Forecasting & Social Change. Horizon 3 forecasts promise widespread applications of nanotechnology as an enabling technology in various industries and converging disciplines. 2 At this size range. Further information can be found in: ISO/TS27687 (Nanotechnologies . M. and advocacy for nanotechnology-related societal benefit. As highlighted by Roco et al (2010). (2010) Nanotechnology Research Directions for Societal Needs in 2020. Retrospective and Outlook. (2010) Technology Annex. and have great potential to transform and disrupt everyday 2 Miles. user facilities.C.0 NANOTECHNOLOGY There is on-going international debate and discussion about the correct definition of nanotechnology. The opportunities and products arising from technology convergences like these are difficult to predict. public research centres.. Nanotechnology exhibits a strong degree of convergence with many other disciplines. the laws of physics operate in unfamiliar ways. Springer. advanced instrumentation. Nanotechnology Work Health and Safety Symposium September 2010. This infrastructure is critical to further drive R&D to help realise the opportunities embedded within nanoscience. ICT will interface neatly with biomedicine and nanoscience.. with applications in areas such as drug delivery. and it is this that determines both the constraints and the opportunities of nanotechnologies and nanoscience. M. nanotechnology is defined as: the application of scientific knowledge to manipulate and control matter at the nanoscale level to make use of size and structure dependent properties and phenomena distinct from those associated with individual atoms or molecules or with bulk materials.. M. chemical. London. therapeutics. (2010) Nanometrology and Documentary Standards for Nanotechnology. Hersam. 5 the development of nanotechnology has come to encompass a rich infrastructure of multidisciplinary professional communities. The nanoscale is the size range from approximately 1nm to 100nm. 4 Nanotechnologies encompass the production and application of physical. Mirkin C. however.Terminology and definitions for nano-objects) and ISO/TS80004 (Nanotechnologies . and biological systems. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 15 . imaging and diagnostics.C. 4 5 Roco. Technology and Innovation Futures. such as the information and communications technologies (ICT) industry. Department for Business. computing resources.Vocabulary). universities and firms throughout the world. (2007) Designing foresight studies for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (NST) future developments..Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 5. 3 Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre.

segmented by the following areas of application: nanotools and platforms. 5. Nanotechnology Takes a Deep Breath.75 billion invested in 2009. governments worldwide have shown significant interest in nanotechnology research and development.2. which are addressed in Sections 5. 6 Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre. private investment is expected to exceed public investment. 5. Technology and Innovation Futures.9 and 5. but help address national and global challenges. Nanotechnology Global Market Overview Nanotechnology is a multidisciplinary field with significant disruptive potential. manufactured nanomaterials and components. The aim of this chapter is to build a roadmap of emerging nanotechnologies. and Prepares to Save the World! Global Nanotechnology Funding in 2009. defence and food.. followed by an analysis of drivers. (2007) NANOTECHNOLOGY: Revolutionizing R&D to develop smarter therapeutics and diagnostics. Department for Business. 6. Business Insights. aerospace. and Prepares to Save the World! Global Nanotechnology Funding in 2009. 10 Cientifica Ltd. focussing on sectors such as semiconductors. with a further USD $9. while Figure 3 highlights the expected breakdown in 2015. Innovation and Skills. (2010) Technology Annex. opportunities. Section 5. Cientifica Ltd. pharmaceutical and health care. Cientifica Ltd. and nanodevices and systems. Key governments investing in nanoscience include: 9  European Union (27 members + Seventh Framework Programme)  Russia  United States  Japan  China Regardless of the large investment from government.8. Nanotechnology Takes a Deep Breath. 8 Because of the substantial opportunities associated with the development of nanotechnologies. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 16 . (2009)..7 Products and technologies arising from nanoscience have the potential to not only improve livelihoods.1. Barton. Cientifica 10 estimated that corporations across the globe would spend USD $41 billion on nanotechnology R&D in 2010. (2009). By the end of 2008.1 describes the global nanotechnology market. London. The Royal Society & The Royal Academy of Engineering (2004) Nanoscience and nanotechnologies: opportunities and uncertainties. nearly USD $40 billion had been invested by governments in nanoscience. C...Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 living. barriers. In 2008. risks and the disruptive potential of nanotechnology in Section 5. 7 8 9 Cientifica Ltd.10 respectively. Figure 2 highlights the many different applications of nanotechnology and the segmentation of R&D funding towards each application in 2007.

Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Figure 2: Applications of Nanotechnology. 2015 Source: Business Insights. 2007 Figure 3: Applications of Nanotechnology. 2007 Source: Business Insights. 2007 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 17 .

3 45.887.671. highlighting the dominant market share of nanomaterials. Through to 2015 (USD $ Million) NANOTECHNOLOGY Nanomaterials Nanotools Nanodevices TOTAL Source: BCC Research.1 per cent from 2010 through 2015).7 6.1 31. Table 2 segments the global nanotechnology market by product type. and the expected rapid growth rates for nanodevices through to 2015.7 billion in 2010.613.5 233. such as nanoparticulate fabric treatments. as well as new technologies. Nanotechnology: A Realistic Market Assessment BCC Research.9 5. 2010 2009 9.4 15.720. nanolithographic tools. Nanotechnology: A Realistic Market Assessment © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 18 . such as nanocatalyst thin films for catalytic converters.2 35.3 2010 9.1 11 12 BCC Research. rocket fuel additives. Figure 4 illustrates an estimate of the global value of sales for products incorporating nanotechnologies.667.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 BCC Research 11 estimated that the global market for products incorporating nanotechnologies was approximately USD $15.797.027. Through to 2015.812.9 CAGR% 2010 . 2010 Table 2: Global Nanotechnology Market by Type.2015 14. (USD $ Million) Source: BCC Research.7 26. (2010). and nanoscale electronic memory.7 3. (2010).9 11. These figures include well-established commercial nanomaterials applications.7 billion by 2015 (a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11.0 11. 12 Figure 4: Global Market for Products Incorporating Nanotechnologies. with forecasts to grow to USD $26.5 2015 19.621.2 2.

cost-effective carbon capture. Technology and Innovation Futures. each of which have a broad and growing number of applications in numerous industries. Nanotechnology Analysis Nanotechnology encompasses many different technologies. and is continually growing.A. 15 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 19 .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 As highlighted within this section. drug delivery systems and health monitoring. Hersam. Mirkin C. and other emerging and converging technologies. such as biotechnology. nanotechnology and cognitive science. 15 Converging technologies have blurred the boundaries between existing industry sectors. Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre. (2010) Nanotechnology Research Directions for Societal Needs in 2020. (2010) Technology Annex. The technologies highlighted in this list provide an indication of some of the products that are expected to be commercialised from nanotechnology. 14 The idea that nanotechnology can enable other areas of science and technology is expressed in the concept of ‘converging technologies’: the combination of two or more broad areas. as R&D continues.. quantum information systems. Department for Business. C. M. The three key areas where industry experts expect nanotechnology to have the greatest opportunities and impact within the healthcare and pharmaceutical industry are: diagnosis. 13 5. ICT.2. Retrospective and Outlook. Innovation and Skills. Business Insights.C. with estimated that the industry will assume around 17 per cent of the global market for nanotechnologies by 2015. (2007) NANOTECHNOLOGY: Revolutionizing R&D to develop smarter therapeutics and diagnostics. it will enable the creation and advancement of innovative areas of research such as synthetic biology. 14 Roco.C. Table 3 highlights some of the basic building blocks of nanotechnology and potential end-use products. healthcare and pharmaceutical applications for nanotechnologies is an area expected to witness rapid growth. geoengineering.. This list is by no means exhaustive. London. As nanotechnology further develops. M. Springer. It is the convergence of technologies and blurring of boundaries that will create opportunities for nanotechnology and maximise its disruptive potential. nanobiotechnology.. 13 Barton. and this trend will continue into the future with further development in technological fields.

in vitro diagnostics. hygiene products. nanocomposite plastics. Automobiles. UV Block Dispersions. Transistors Coated thin films Self-assembling structures Reagents Medical implants COMPONENTS END-USE PRODUCTS Fuels.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Table 3: Building Blocks of Nanotechnology Used. applications and products. 2010 Nanotechnology techniques. Polymer additives. such as the use of silicate nanoclays. Table 4 outlines emerging end user markets and a timeline for commercialisation of new technologies. These end user markets include: food and beverage packaging. Solar cells Bio-defence. Displays Molecular memory. “Super” capacitors. Chemical Mechanical Polishing (CMP) slurry additives Films and encapsulation Fabric coating Scanning probe tip. Displays (experimental). 16 Global Industry Analysts (2010) Nanobiotechnology © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 20 . They are expected to have both an evolutionary and potentially disruptive impact on existing industries in terms of manufacturing processes. Emerging nanotechnologies will also have impacts on government policy and international trade. Field emitting devices. Chemicals Sunscreens. Electronics. life sciences. in vitro diagnostics Drug delivery. Cosmetics. CMP slurries Solar cells. Stain resistant apparel Aerospace. coatings. in vivo diagnostics Metal Oxides Silicon Quantum dots Nanowhiskers Carbon Nanotubes Inorganic Nanostructure Organic Molecules Gold core oligonucleotides Nanoscale porous silicon Source: Global Industry Analysts. catalytic converters. Carbon composite fillers. and carbon nanotubes are emerging as key technologies currently being commercialised into a number of end user markets. 16 Existing and emerging innovative nanotechnologies will be applied to a growing field of applications. Sporting goods. photographic films and sunscreens to name a few. Gene expression assay. High performance coating. metal oxide nanoparticles. Atomic force microscope Solar cells. particularly in the areas of health. electrostatic body panel painting. water management and clean technology. Electrodes. Nonvolatile memory. Components and Final End-Use Products BUILDING BLOCKS Metal/Organometallics Catalysts Nanoparticle coatings. fuel cell electrodes. Medical imaging Moisture wicking apparel.

metamaterials. and medicine in © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 21 .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Table 4: End Use Application . 2010 General Applications Energy Fuel Cells Other disciplines that are expected to emerge from convergence with nanotechnology include spintronics.Commercialisation Time Grid (2010) TIMELINE APPLICATION AREA APPLICATION / TECHNIQUE 0-2 years x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x 3-6 years 7-10 years 10 + years Food and Beverage Edible Wraps Nanocodes Biotechnology Gallium Nitride Nanotubes Biomedical Energy Health and Life Sciences Prosthetic Legs Polymers for Fluorescent Probes Nanoengineered Prosthetics Nanotubes (Select Applications) Nanorobots Sensors Carbon Nanotubes Nanocomputing Quantum Computers Electronics and Communications Carbon Nanotubes Bar Coded Beads (Microbeads) Magnetic Stamps Memory and Display Systems Semiconductor/Electricity Electricity Nanochips and Biochips Thermoelectricity High Efficiency Solar Energy Cells Fuel Conversion Transportation and Other Applications Source: Global Industry Analysts. manufacturing. design. plasmonics. and molecular nanosystems. The establishment of nanoinformatics as a new field for communication.

(2011) Opportunities for Nanotechnologies in Electronics–Technology Market Penetration and Roadmapping. Major drivers for the uptake of nanotechnologies in the energy industry include the need for security and sustainability of energy supply. 1. chemistry. Bowman. with traditional coal plans only capturing 30-35 per cent of the energy in coal as electricity. information. as well as for the future training of researchers. 19 Frost & Sullivan. Volume 726. Climate change drivers for nanotechnology R&D encompass efforts to improve energy storage in green technologies. Springer. 21 20 ABB (2007) Energy Efficiency in the Power Grid. particularly on nanomaterials will have a widespread impact in health. technology transfer and intellectual property expertise.. Mirkin C. (2010) Nanotechnology Research Directions for Societal Needs in 2020. Sylvester. Retrospective and Outlook.C. engineering. (2011) Navigating the Patent Landscapes for Nanotechnology: English Gardens or Tangled Grounds? Methods in Molecular Biology.. 18 Further.. Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung. who not only have to remain experts in their own field. due to this interdisciplinary nature. M.3. 21 17 Roco. energy and many other fields where there is a major economic benefit to the commercialisation of new technologies. 18 GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities. This poses a number of challenges for future research structures. decoupling energy production from fossil fuels and decoupling from economic growth. These properties have widespread potential applications across a variety of industries. M. Losses of between six and eight per cent of power produced during electricity transmission and distribution are currently considered normal. Technical Insights. D. concern has been raised that patent offices will prove unable to appropriately handle requests to patent nanoscience developments. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 22 . Hersam. Part 2. D.C.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 nanotechnology will also be important. Stuttgart. Nanotechnology has fostered the convergence of fundamental and applied R&D and requires expert input from the fields of physics.. 17 These emerging fields are addressed further throughout this chapter. Biomedical Nanotechnology.A. Inefficiencies of energy supply through the current power grid also drive technological innovation. Drivers The key driver of research into nanotechnology is the enhanced properties exhibited by nanosized particles and materials. 20 Research. and growing consumer and government awareness of the implications of climate change. 19 5. but must also improve their literacy in neighbouring fields. Pages 359-378.J.M. and biology. carbon pricing and an increased global market for alternative energy technologies..

solar and renewable sources. nanotechnologies are beginning to gain greater use in water systems. and risk of infections in hospital. including energy conversion (hydrogen fuel cells and thin film and organic photovoltaics). Driven in response to issues like these. reduction of vehicle weight and improved combustion of fossil fuels). 22 Manufactured nanomaterials will enable the development of new energy generation systems based on nuclear.. improved public health and new therapeutic treatments. asthma. Stuttgart 23 24 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 23 . the ability to monitor many medical conditions in the home through the integration of point of care devices with telehealth and electronic health records management (eHealth). etc.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Energy industry concerns will continue to drive R&D of nanotechnologies for applications in various systems. meaning that by itself. including the water and wastewater treatment industry. Growing numbers of communities are living in areas of severe water stress. solid state lighting. such as diabetes. M. GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities. not competitive. and energy use (insulation. (2008) Energy and Nanotechnologies: Strategy for Australia’s Future. Opportunities and new markets enabled by 22 Lu.. The increase in chronic diseases. will further drive health treatments in the home. instead nanotechnology complements and enables new and existing industries by providing new products and processes. combined with the cost of hospital care. Nanomaterials will also contribute to the development of new drugs. energy storage (batteries. driving the need to be more sustainable in their use and associated treatment of water. Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE) OECD (2011) Fostering Nanotechnology to Address Global Challenges: Water. Further. energy transmission (superconducting systems). 24 5.4. therapies. it is not an industry. high blood pressure. G. hydrogen storage and supercapacitors). Opportunities Nanotechnology has been described as complementary. & Tegart. Climate change is also driving nanotechnology applications in the environmental remediation industry. and cures for currently chronic and fatal illnesses. Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung. 23 The rapid ageing of the population will drive the uptake of nanotechnology in the development of point of care medical devices and sensors to support ‘ageing in place’. the application of nanotechnologies has immense capability and promise for advanced diagnostics.. Important areas of focus will be the application of nanomaterials in tissue engineering and medical imaging.

residential and personal consumers.. water quality remediation and contaminated soil remediation are areas where nanotechnology enabled solutions have numerous opportunities. maintenance and enhancement. From a global perspective. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 24 . (2009) Nanotechnology in Environmental Applications: The Global Market. Boehm. F.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 nanotechnologies are potentially numerous and include opportunities in the health. A number of environmental protection technologies are included under the clean technology discussion below.. BCC Research. Air quality remediation. with applications in environmental remediation. (2009) Nanotechnology in Environmental Applications: The Global Market. according to the 25 26 27 Brinks. Agriculture and mining are just two industries that heavily rely on water access. (2007) Nanotechnology & Water: Opportunities and Challenges. commercial. Water Water is a very important resource in Australia. processed water is able to be used in many applications for these two industries and many others. Victorian Water Sustainability Seminar. F. Boehm. and the environmental remediation markets. highly effective recycling and green technologies. services and products applied to environmental protection is expected to present the largest opportunities for nanotechnologies.6 billion in 2007. followed by environmental remediation. as many important industries contributing to the Australian economy rely heavily on having access to a secure source of clean water. P. In this respect. energy. via the significant reduction of source pollutants. nanotechnology research. with filtration applications dominating the market. protection. However. 26 Nanotechnologies applied to environmental protection will serve to facilitate and expedite ongoing remediation efforts. nanotechnology has the potential to satisfy the water filtration needs of industrial. Nanotechnology-based remedial applications developed for use in the environment might have important positive impacts that may directly affect human health. 27 The market for nanotechnologies used in water and wastewater applications worldwide reached USD $1. Strategies for environmental protection that include nanotechnologies encompass improved prevention and containment of toxic compound spills into soils.. along with wide-ranging and efficient improvements in energy conservation and generation. 25 Environment Opportunities for nanotechnologies in the environmental remedial industries are numerous. BCC Research.

presenting a major opportunity for nanotechnology to address this issue. using wireless nanosensor technologies will provide users with water management systems featuring good accuracy and rapid response rates. global positioning. computing. nanotechnologies are envisaged to be particularly efficient for three key water handling purposes: treatment and remediation. not only in Australia but globally. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 25 .. (2009) Nanotechnology in Environmental Applications: The Global Market. sensing and detection. water shortages can have a tremendous impact. but on industries such as agriculture. 29 The water industry in Australia already applies nanotechnologies for the detection and treatment of contaminated water. 30 31 32 33 Brinks.. and modelling and display industries. BCC Research. 32 Agriculture Nanotechnology is poised to alter the face of the agribusiness sector significantly over the next decade. 33 28 29 OECD (2011) Fostering Nanotechnology to Address Global Challenges: Water. robustness and small size. Agriculture is by far the largest user of water.. Both in developed and developing countries. automation. OECD (2011) Fostering Nanotechnology to Address Global Challenges: Water. 31 Nanotechnologies are expected to also play a role in water resource management. and Development. not only on health. F. telecommunications. and is responsible for many cases of water pollution. et al. Hillie T. Opportunities for nanotechnologies in the agriculture sector will result through the convergence and integration of nano enabled innovations stemming from the agrochemical. (2007) Nanotechnology & Water: Opportunities and Challenges. agrobiotech. for example in measuring levels of contamination and treating them. Water management in agriculture will be significantly improved in the future through the effective application of emerging nanotechnologies.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 OECD. Precision farming. (2009) Nanotechnology. Boehm. as well as potentially combining sensing and feedback. mining and power production. Managing and securing access to clean water is a major challenge. more than half a billion of those in severe water stress areas. 28 Further development of nanotechnologies for water remediation has been identified as a high priority area as clean water is an essential human development need. Over three billion people were living in areas of water stress in 2005. Water. P. sensor. Commissioned by Meridian Institute’s Global Dialogue on Nanotechnology and the Poor : Opportunities and Risks. for example in industries such as mining and agriculture. manufacturing. and pollution prevention. OECD (2011) Fostering Nanotechnology to Address Global Challenges: Water. Victorian Water Sustainability Seminar. 30 Into the future.

Ministry of Research. legal. Environmental concerns tend to be the major driver for R&D investment in this area. Business Insights. inexpensive micropower supplies for personal electronics. solar cells. These applications may include batteries for electric vehicles. Opportunities for nanotechnologies in the clean tech sector are driven by issues like climate change and peak oil (when the world oil production reaches its maximum and begins its decline). political and ethical issues 34 35 Frost & Sullivan. Barriers There are many challenges and barriers to be considered and overcome to enable the responsible uptake of nanotechnologies across the different industry sectors where they promise to make a significant contribution to productivity and efficiency. Barton. Barton. and many more. Also driving these opportunities is increased investment and consumer demand for "green" and "clean" alternatives. (2007) Impact of Nanotechnology in the Energy Industry.37  Development of useful applications for nanoscale phenomena  Regulatory. dentistry. fuel-cell catalysis and efficient. 35 5. Many of these challenges are interrelated and include: 36. Science and Technology (2006) Roadmaps for Science : nanoscience + nanotechnologies.5. C. Many major oil and power companies are investing in nanoscience R&D to enable energy applications. 34 which is supported through various government initiatives. C. while multifunctional nanoscale devices could potentially simultaneously detect and treat cancer. pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. Nanotechnology will have major applications in medicine. clean energy storage. (2007). (2007). The identification of biomarkers will help predict disease susceptibility and precancerous lesions. NANOTECHNOLOGY: Revolutionizing R&D to develop smarter therapeutics and diagnostics. Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals An ageing population with growing healthcare needs represents an enormous opportunity for nanotechnology products. clean hydrogen generation and storage. the integration of nanotechnology within cancer research promises to increase current understanding about how cancer progresses. 36 37 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 26 . Business Insights. For example.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Clean Technology The clean technology field holds numerous opportunities for nanotechnology based energy harvesting and generation applications. NANOTECHNOLOGY: Revolutionizing R&D to develop smarter therapeutics and diagnostics.

efficient and sustainable methods for serial and large scale mass production. G. The continual integration and ongoing development of new methods of synthesis and novel and innovative nano-objects into existing production processes will also need to be addressed to encourage the scale up of nanotech product fabrication into the future. 38 Lu.. Technical challenges to be overcome to encourage the processing and fabrication of nanomaterials (and therefore other elements in the value chain) include effective monitoring of materials through development and processing.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Competition with established microscale technologies  License of proof-of-concept nanotools. 39 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 27 .. Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE). Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung. as well as rigorous quality assurance and control programs. (2008) Energy and Nanotechnologies: Strategy for Australia’s Future. 39 Further development of material characterisation methods and nanoanalytics programs will also be required to ensure the future development of nanotechnologies. M. Stuttgart. delivery systems and products  Intellectual property protection. GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities. and skilling of patent and technology transfer offices  Potential internal reluctance to embrace nanotechnologies and nanotools within businesses  Undertaking nanotechnology R&D in a way that pro-actively and meaningfully engages with society  Large-scale production cost challenges  Cost premium over existing products  Need for multidisciplinary infrastructure and researchers  Safety and toxicity and the effective management of the potential risks of manufactured nanomaterials  Public and consumer concern about safety and resulting consumer activism that might inhibit commercial investment in nanotechnology-based products. & Tegart. The Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE) 38 has described the nanotechnology value chain as starting with the production of nanomaterials (nanoscale structures in unprocessed form) which then become nanointermediates (intermediate products with nanoscale features) and finally nano-enabled products (finished goods incorporating nanotechnologies).

41 42 Miles. (eds) Edward Elgar Publishing.  Balancing governments support for nanotechnology. (eds) Edward Elgar Publishing.A. Nanometrology is important both for the large scale production of nanoproducts. Due to the nature of nanotechnology. the trend of the future. Nanometrology Nanometrology.  Ensuring appropriate transparency and trust continues across all areas of existing and evolving nanotechnology regulation frameworks. 3-25. J.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Regulation Hodge et al (2010) 40 suggests there are a number of regulatory challenges that society will confront with regard to nanotechnology.A. acknowledging strengths and weaknesses in different approaches. D. (2009) Green nanotechnology. the science of measurement at the nanoscale. Maynard. test methods and the incorporation of nanometrology into the International Measurement System. et al (2010) Introduction: the regulatory challenges for nanotechnologies.D. expertise and standards for nanotechnology. as well as the impact of engineered nanomaterials across the materials life-cycle.41  Establishing and articulating effectively the existence of regulatory gaps and triggers in current legislation.. there are significant public confidence and trust risks facing regulators responsible for ensuring the safety of these products. Effective methods for measuring air. (2010) Nanotechnology Captured. G.  Effectively assessing alternative regulatory regimes that may be in practice. 42 The National Measurement Institute (NMI) Australia (Nanometrology Group) is assisting to address the need for nanometrology instrumentation and standards in Australia. D. Hodge. The group develops measurement infrastructure. Significant multidisciplinary research will be needed to address this lack of knowledge. Inc. as well as for regulation.A. has been recognised by governments. A. Inc.M. Hodge. Frost & Sullivan. A. Bowman.and water-borne nanomaterials are needed. research institutions and the private sector worldwide as vitally important to the development and commercialisation of nanotechnologies. while enabling citizens to influence policy directions and protecting their health and safety.. Some of these include:  Large gaps in knowledge across various scientific frontiers. 40 Hodge. Further development of nanotechnologies depends on the development of innovative new measuring instruments and tools.D. International Handbook on Regulating Nanotechnologies. pp. Bowman. International Handbook on Regulating Nanotechnologies. as a basis for future innovation and economic growth. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 28 .M. 83-107. G.  Developing appropriate metrology and standards for nanotechnologies. Answers are needed to address questions raised about the safety of nanomaterials. G. Maynard. pp.

and cognitive science leads to high interdisciplinarity within intellectual property to be examined. and contribute to effective health. 388. privacy concerns may be raised when miniature sensors become ubiquitous. G. Mandel. BCC Research. Accessed 27/09/2011. Hodge.. primarily due to the complex multidisciplinary nature of nanotechnology patents.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 with the aim of assisting Australian researchers and industries to capitalise on growth and commercialisation opportunities. F. ICT. Inc.A.D. D. (2010) Regulating nanotechnology through intellectual property rights. A. These types of issues can put further at risk a company’s investment into nanoscience R&D. chemistry. Boehm. there is a risk that traditional labour forces could be disadvantaged. optics. safety and environmental regulatory frameworks for nanotechnologies. biotechnology. Patent offices had struggled with a lack of properly skilled and trained examiners to cover the numerous technical fields required. 43 Technology Transfer The diversity of nanotechnologies poses a challenge for technology transfer and intellectual property expertise. Ethical considerations must play an important role in the development of strategies for the incremental deployment of these nanotechnologies and there must be sensitivity as to the sustained wellbeing of the workers. Bowman. Convergence of nanotechnology with fields like physics. International Handbook on Regulating Nanotechnologies. public acceptance issues involved with some applications of nanotechnologies may present barriers to effective commercialisation. yet reduce prices and save on labour costs. Maynard. Due to the nature of nanotechnology. G. N. 46 43 44 Australian Nanotechnology Network: National Measurement Institute Nanometrology Group Website. which the patent system has struggled to cope with.7). unsatisfactory intellectual property protection. a disruptive effect on the current practices used in that industry will be felt (further discussed in Section 5. 45 Social Challenges In many of the industries in which nanotechnology is applied..M. and the lack of consistent definitions and terminology within the field. 44 Companies exploring the possibilities of nanotechnologies are also exposed to investment risks in nanotechnology enabled products. The use of nanotechnologies within certain sectors could conceivably boost production. Allianz (2005) Opportunities and risks of Nanotechnologies. for example. (2009) Nanotechnology in Environmental Applications: The Global Market. The past decade has seen a rush of nanotechnology patent applications worldwide. 45 46 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 29 . As with the introduction of any disruptive technology. The program is supported by the National Enabling Technologies Strategy. and ineffective marketing and communication of product benefits potentially leading to consumer backlash. OECD. (eds) Edward Elgar Publishing. pp.

Frost & Sullivan. Ludlow K. ecological. (2007) Review of Possible Impacts of Nanotechnology on Australia's Regulatory Frameworks. et al. use 47 Chaudhry Q. inhibiting commercial investment in nanotechnologybased products.. Bowman D. ethical.M. These types of challenges may be particularly relevant in longer term applications within nanobiotechnology. 5. The Working Group consists of regulators. commercialisation and adoption can take place. 48 Apprehensions from the community and policy makers globally have been fuelled by laboratory studies on the illeffects of some manufactured nanomaterials on animals. (eds) Edward Elgar Publishing. The Health. involving significant interface of material systems with. Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. health and safety effects. the body. business. like any new technology.A.M. or internal modification of. their manufacture. pp. products and applications that give rise to exposure to manufactured nanomaterials via inhalation (e. As highlighted by Chaudhry et al (2010). political.. is also likely to generate a range of different social and ethical challenges. the multiple ways in which nanotechnologies will combine. 49 A 2007 report by Monash University 50 found that Australia’s federal regulatory frameworks are generally well suited to allowing adequate management and control of risks posed by engineered nanomaterials and products incorporating nanomaterials. The HSE Working Group aims to address any potential HSE issues that may arise with the introduction of enabling technologies. Maynard. and security risks and more. However.D. 47 particular safety concerns are raised by those processes. it may pose risks that will need to be managed before wide scale development. Inc. Maynard. social. Hodge. Risks Nanotechnology will enable many exciting new products and solutions over the next decade. One of the more important risks to be addressed is to satisfy concerns raised about the potential toxicity.A. (2010) The current risk assessment paradigm in relation to the regulation of nanotechnologies.. ingestion (food and drinks) or intravenous delivery (some medicines and diagnostics aids). and invasive nature of some manufactured nanomaterials. Nanotechnology convergence. cleaning aids. A. D. G. These risks include health and safety risks. Monash University 48 49 50 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 30 . policy makers and agencies with a direct interest in nanotechnology developments. and spray).Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Unsuccessful management of truly disruptive nanotechnologies will result in negative public and consumer attitudes to nanotechnologies.6. International Handbook on Regulating Nanotechnologies. Bowman. A. (2006) Nanotechnology: A Research Strategy for Addressing Risk. the trend of the future. skin application (cosmetics). & Hodge G. (2009) Green nanotechnology. Safety and Environment (HSE) Working Group is a key element of the National Enabling Technologies Strategy. Monash Centre for Regulatory Studies.g. 124-143.

52 The International Risk Governance Council 53 states that the impact of nanostructures on the environment may be significant because of the potential for:  Bioaccumulation. nano-specific training and personal protective equipment. M. 49–69. Ortwin. Safe Work Australia. Regulation and Management. cadmium and organics and transfer them along the food chain  Persistence. & Bowman D.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 and handling. under the Nanotechnology Work Health and Safety Program. will be hard to detect.. (2006) White Paper on Nanotechnology Risk Governance. Are we willing to heed the lessons of the past? Nanomaterials and Australia’s Asbestos Legacy. due to the small size of the nanomaterials. Mullins. and also contributes to global efforts on nanotechnology work health and safety. 52 53 51 Safe Work Australia. (eds). this has been disputed by Mullins (2010) 51 who believes that specific regulation for nanomaterials is required to protect workers. such as mandatory registry of products. International Risk Governance Council... Hull. There are calls for the implementation of nano-specific controls and processes. conducting research and providing guidance on the potential work safety and health implications from applications of nanotechnology. R. (2010). pp. Focus areas of the program include:  Ensure nanotechnology is covered appropriately within the Work Health and Safety Regulatory Framework  Improve understanding of the hazardous properties of engineered nanomaterials  Assess the effectiveness of workplace controls in preventing exposure to engineered nanomaterials  Develop procedures for detecting and measuring emissions exposure in workplaces  Provide information and guidance for Australian nanotechnology organizations  Ensure consistency with international approaches & contributing to international work This Safe Work Australia program is Australia-focused. S. However.M. London: Elsevier. is providing policy direction. particularly if they absorb smaller contaminants such as pesticides. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 31 . Accessed 27/09/2011 Roco M. The program supports the National Enabling Technologies Strategy. Nanotechnology Environmental Health and Safety: Risks. Mullins states that there is an incorrect assumption that existing regulations and information about manufactured nanomaterials in substances (or substances in nanoform) are sufficient to trigger the introduction of controls and processes in workplaces. in effect creating non-biodegradable pollutants which. Nanotechnology and Work Health and Safety Website.

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Nanotechnology has the potential to have disruptive impacts on developing economies. Nanoscale engineering offers the potential to transform existing materials and design entirely new ones. New manufactured nanomaterials may replace traditional raw materials, altering demand for these materials from commodity dependent developing countries. 54 Countering some of the risks mentioned, Maynard 55 (2007) foresees that in the long term, new ways of predicting and pre-emptively managing the potential risk of emerging nanotechnologies are expected to be developed. These are likely to include managing mechanistic toxicology, predictive risk assessment, management of later generation nanotechnologies, and

management of emergent behaviour and convergence between different technologies. Further, it is expected that new disciplines such as nano-ecotoxicology (toxicity to the environment and ecological systems) and nano-genotoxicology (toxicity to human health) will be developed into the future to evaluate the global impact of these new systems. 56

5.7. Disruptive Potential
Nanotechnology is a relatively young, yet rapidly expanding scientific discipline that is predicted to have important implications for a stunningly wide array of applications encompassing an extensive array of market sectors. Almost every industry will be affected by the emergence and further development of nanotechnologies. In many of the industries in which nanotechnology is applied, a disruptive effect on the current practices used in that industry will be felt. Nanotechnology may generate major paradigm shifts in many industry sectors, including longterm care, electronics, packaging, plastics, apparel, hospitality, paper and printing, glass, cosmetics and many more. Nanotechnologies are expected to assist in making existing industries more efficient and environmentally sustainable, as well as assisting to provide more effective, cheaper and energy efficient products and services. 57,58 Growth and demand for clean technology and alternative energy products are likely to be stimulated by the introduction of nanotechnologies in the near future, enhancing efficacies of technologies embraced by the industry, and displacing older technologies and business enterprises relying on them.

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ETC Group (2005) The potential impacts of nano-scale technologies on commodity markets: the implications for commodity dependent developing countries. Maynard, A., (2007) Nanotechnologies: Overview and Issues. Nanotechnology – Toxicological Issues and Environmental Safety, 1–14. Springer.

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Saez, G., et al (2010) Development of new nano-tools: Towards an integrative approach to address the societal question of nanotechnology? Nano Today Wood, S., et al, (2004) The social and economic challenges of nanotechnology, Economic and Social Research Council. Morton, S., (2008) CSIRO Submission, Inquiry into Nanotechnology in NSW.

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Nanotechnologies are expected to have a large impact on the health care industry through the development of new technologies improving current practises in illness and disease diagnosis, treatment and prevention, both in developed and developing countries. Technologies and products resulting from the study of both nanotechnology, and the convergence of nano with biotechnology (nanobiotechnology) will have numerous applications in fields like medicine, dentistry and diagnostics. Implementation of these technologies will improve health and wellness outcomes for patients all over the globe.

5.8. Nanotools and Platforms
A key feature of nanotechnology is the dependence on appropriate tools and methodologies to characterise features and properties at the nanoscale. Without the continuing development of nanotools, the growth of the nanotechnology industry would be challenged. Pressure from the nanotechnology industry drives the development of nanotools, as tools and methodologies are needed for the continued growth of nanotechnology as a whole. Nanotools collectively refer to the technologies that enable scientists to visualise, engineer, and manipulate matter at the atomic level. To remain competitive, industrial companies and researchers need the ability to examine, characterise and measure matter. Using the most powerful tools available is essential for success, particularly at the nanoscale. 59

5.8.1. Global Demand and Applications
Commercial nanotools can be broadly classified into the following groups: 60  Nanomanipulators (manipulate or measure nanoscale objects or materials, including scanning probe microscopes)  Near-field optical microscopes  Nanomachining tools (cut, grind or otherwise change properties of nanoscale materials)  Advanced optical lithography tools (produce nanoscale features on microelectronic devices). Nanotools accounted for approximately 36 per cent of the total nanotechnology market in 2010. Total sales of nanotools were projected to grow from USD $5.8 billion in 2010 to USD $6.8 billion by 2015. As shown in Table 5, advanced optical nanolithography tools is the largest market, however growth in this field is expected to be slow. Nanomanipulators while only

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Global Industry Analysts (2011) Nanobiotechnology BCC Research. (2010). Nanotechnology: A Realistic Market Assessment

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accounting for a small share of the nanotool market, are expected to have a very high growth rate. 61 Table 5: Global Market for Commercial and Developmental Nanotool Applications, Through to 2015 (USD $ Million)
APPLICATION Advanced optical nanolithography tools Nanomanipulators Near-field optics Nanomachining tools TOTAL COMMERCIAL NANOTOOLS Developmental Nanotools TOTAL NANOTOOLS
Source: BCC Research, 2010

2009 2,250.0 135.0 47.1 16.0 2,448.1 165.0 2,613.1

2010 5,400 162.0 52.4 17.8 5,632.2 165.0 5,797.2

2015 5,715.0 403.1 89.5 29.9 6,237.5 575.0 6,812.5

CAGR% 20102015 1.1 20.0 11.3 10.9 2.1 28.4 30.5

Over the last 10 years, an array of nanotools and instruments have evolved to enable the development of nanomaterials and functionalise matter at the nanoscale. An overview of the current and emerging technologies that will assist with the analysis and synthesis of nanoscience is provided below.

Nanoscale Detection and Analysis
There are a large range of instruments that can be used for nanoscale detection and analysis of nanostructures. These include: atomic force microscopy; scanning electron microscopy; scanning near field optical microscopy; transmission electron microscopy; surface enhanced Raman scattering; surface plasmon resonance; and fluorescence resonance energy transfer. Of these, the most widely used technologies are atomic force and scanning electron microscopy. 62 The development of nanotools and instrumentation assists in the detection and fabrication of nanoscale systems. Some techniques and tools often used when undertaking nanoscale analysis can include: 63

61 62

BCC Research. (2010). Nanotechnology: A Realistic Market Assessment

Barton, C. (2007). NANOTECHNOLOGY: Revolutionizing R&D to develop smarter therapeutics and diagnostics. Business Insights. Barton, C. (2007). NANOTECHNOLOGY: Revolutionizing R&D to develop smarter therapeutics and diagnostics. Business Insights.

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The selfassembling process is dependent on the fine balance of competing interactions between the different molecular parts or different molecules that exhibit similarities to complex biological systems. 64 Directed self-assembly is an emergent technology as it is promising to deliver a mass production. Self-Assembly The control of molecular self-organisation by means of chemical and physical stimuli is important to the successful creation and control of structure on the nanoscale. Nanoscale structures.new nanomaterials that can be incorporated within cell culture systems to improve in vitro culture conditions and form a 3D microenvironment in which cells may be encapsulated. Potential to be very efficient electricity and heat conductors.miniaturisation of microarrays. and are unconstrained on the longitudinal axis. Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung.  Quantum Dots . The directed self-assembly approach is still going through developmental phases and leverages existing patterning methods by combining them with self-organising systems.  Nanowires .  Nanofluidics . the development of molecular electronics and biomimetic crystallisation.  Nanoscaffolding . adhesion of biomaterials.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Nanoarrays .  Nanotubes .semiconductor nanostructures used to tag components within biological samples (proteins. They have application in circuitry such as micro/nanofluidic systems. through self-assembly will lead to applications that range from the development of new formulations for pharmaceuticals and pigments to morphology control. Nanofluidics are used for cell-sorting and single cell gene expression profiling. The continuing development of new nanotools and methodologies will assist in the creation of new ways to synthesise and fabricate nanomaterials and assembly of nanodevices. or act as microcarriers within culture suspensions. DNA) with specific colours for high throughput screening and biological read outs.the science of building microminiaturised devices with chambers and tunnels for the containment and flow of fluids to measure at the nanometer level. to create manufacturing techniques that can be 64 GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities.carbon molecules that are long and thin and shaped like tubes. cost effective nanoparticle synthesis method.are structures that have a defined lateral size constrained to tens of nanometers or less. Stuttgart © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 35 .

66 Opportunities arising through nanojoining R&D include the formation of new processes (e. smart structures as well as structural applications. 66 GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities. nanoadhesion. Nanojoining is a key technical prerequisite for the effective use of nanomaterials. Nanotribology is a truly interdisciplinary subject requiring knowledge of surface interactions. wear and adhesion at the nanoscale.g. Within the next ten years. bionanotribology and near contact issues. development and utilisation of in-situ and ex-situ (3D) tools for intelligent processing and characterisation of “nanojoints” is expected. tools. the study and influence of nanotribology principles will impact the development and design of manufactured nanomaterials into the future. cross-sector information system for nanotechnology materials.and transdisciplinary cooperation between life sciences and engineering fields is required to reach future goals for nanojoining. Nanojoining technology is driven by the current needs of nanomaterials. nanowires. A close inter.. While the field is developing rapidly. and the efficient and environmentally-friendly utilisation of materials. such as product miniaturisation. Current areas of interest in this field include understanding and controlling nanofriction. as well as biochemical concepts. Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung. 65 Nanoanalytics Computational science prediction tools such as nanoanalytics and nanoinformatics are becoming progressively more important in the development of a cross-disciplinary. (2010) Directed Self-Assembly: Expectations and Achievements. and processes. 65 Kumar. Stuttgart © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 36 . chemical environment effects. In the near future directed self-assembly will be employed to yield functional nanostructures. Nano Review.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 readily integrated into existing processes. While nanotribology is not a tool in itself. nanowear. The industrial potential of nanojoining techniques is significant and involves molecular and standard electronics and photonics. mechanical stresses. Nanojoining Nanomaterials such as nanotubes. nanomanipulation. most of the applications that can be realised through exploiting nanotribological ideas are still very embryonic. devices. P. nanostructured alloys and nanocomposites will be extremely useful when they can form integrated parts of devices and components. self-assembly). lubrication. Nanotribology Nanotribology is the study of friction. tailored joint properties and functional joints.

69 5. Freedonia Group Inc. 68 Manufactured nanomaterials can be conventional (metals. This will result in the development of new methods and applications that are not currently achievable. As shown in Table 6 and Figure 5. spheres. Stuttgart Miles. (2010) Nanometrology and Documentary Standards for Nanotechnology. Innovation and Skills. coatings. semi-conductors. and novel structures (wires. etc. after which the development of new nanomaterials with tailored tribological properties and nanoengineered surfaces are likely. ranging from engine components for cars that improve fuel efficiency. electrical.). Manufactured nanomaterials differ from bulk materials in their properties because of surface effects and because quantum effects become significant at the small scales involved. Technology and Innovation Futures. (2010) Technology Annex.. Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung. new (carbon60. and reach USD $34 billion by 2025. etc.9. projected to exceed USD $9 billion in 2018. reactivity and other fundamental properties are changed on account of the increased relative surface area of exposed material. Nanotechnology Work Health and Safety Symposium September 2010.) whose mechanical. These manufactured nanomaterials are intentionally produced for commercial purpose to have specific properties or specific composition. 70 With this expected growth. carbon70). J.1. chemicals and polymers will be the source of most demand for nanomaterials. from pharmaceuticals to construction products and advanced energy storage devices. Global Demand and Applications Global demand for manufactured nanomaterials will be significant. London. nanomaterials will be prevalent in a wide range of markets. to nanomachines to be used for microsurgery and repair of the human body.9. according to the Freedonia Group. ceramics. Manufactured Nanomaterials and Components The term manufactured nanomaterial covers any material with any external dimension in the nanoscale or having internal structure or surface structure in the nanoscale. tubes. 67 5. (2010) World Nanomaterials to 2013 70 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 37 . 67 GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities. 68 69 Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Research into tracing the foundations of friction and wear on the nanoscale is expected to continue through to 2015. Department for Business.

500 8. highlighting that research in the field focuses on both near and future applications in society.015 1. 2003-2025 Source: Freedonia Group.800 1. devices and energy. etc.225 670 385 45 3.575 2018 2.500 11. and then into nanoenabled products such as pharmaceuticals. Stuttgart © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 38 . As seen.430 190 9. electronic devices and clothing. Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung.. 2010 Table 7 highlights many of the key applications for nanomaterials in the broad areas of medical.300 34.300 Figure 5: Share of Nanomaterial Demand by Type. Figure 6 highlights the value chain for nanomaterials. materials. fabrics.000 1.035 2025 7. 71 71 GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities.250 1.000 6.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Table 6: Global Nanomaterial Demand by Type (USD $ Million) ITEM Metal Oxides Chemicals & Polymers Metals Nanotubes Other World Nanomaterial Demand Source: Freedonia Group. many applications are more than 15 years away. chips. such as coatings.600 3. showing their integration into nanointermediates. 2010 2003 266 136 45 20 4 471 2008 600 457 225 105 13 1400 2013 1.

Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Table 7: Key Highlights for Nanomaterials in Industry TIMELINE APPLICATION AREA APPLICATION / TECHNIQUE 1-4 years x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x 5-8 years 9-14 years 15 & above Drug delivery Medical diagnostics Nanoarrays Medical Applications Biomaterials Smart implants Tissue/organ regeneration Nanobio Nanoelectromechanical Systems (NEMS) Cosmetics Coatings Lubricants Materials Textiles Composites Paints Chemical catalysts Food packaging Sensors Displays Memory/storage devices Devices and microelectronics Simple Integrated Circuits Microprocessors Quantum computing Molecular circuitry Energy conservation Fuel cells Portable solar cells Biomass conversion catalyst Clean coal Energy Portable energy cells Integrated solar cells Batteries/ supercapacitors CO2 capture/ sequestration Lighting Hydrogen production & use © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 39 .

72 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 40 . Inc. Emerging applications for nanomaterials are expected in areas such as military and aerospace and energy sectors. The nanomaterials market is expected to be predominantly driven by applications within the healthcare and electronics industries. chemical and mechanical properties of nanomaterials are continuing to drive the development of the technology. 2009. (2010) Global Market for Nanomaterials to Reach US$6. According to a New Report by Global Industry Analysts. 72 The application and use of new PRWeb. 2008 & BCC Research. ATSE. driven by a growing need to improve safety and an increasing desire to advance the efficiency of clean technology devices.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 TIMELINE APPLICATION AREA APPLICATION / TECHNIQUE 1-4 years x x x x x x 5-8 years 9-14 years 15 & above Ambient atmosphere remediation Water filtration Environmental Remediation CO2 sequestration Radioactive material recovery Soil remediation Pesticide replacements Source: Adapted from Gennesys. 2009 The physical. 2009 Figure 6: Nanomaterial Application in the Industry and Value Chain Source: Adapted from Gennesys.2 Billion by 2015. providing new and more efficient materials.

9. Springer. OLEDs (organic light emitting diode). This will result in a suite of new nanocomposite materials with unprecedented and unique combinations of properties. Stuttgart Roco. M. From this analysis.. flame retardants.2. antiseptic systems. multifunctionality. followed by applications such as protective coatings. Conventional synthesis methods include the following: 76  Chemical vapour deposition  Physical vapour deposition  Sol-gel deposition  Electrodeposition. M. conductive films. Frost & Sullivan believe that nanomaterials will hold the most market potential in next generation nanoelectronics. In particular.C. the unique combinations of properties will allow previously disparate technologies to converge into single. from a future market perspective. photovoltaics. Frost & Sullivan.. integrated diagnostic and therapeutic devices. Research group Frost & Sullivan 75 have analysed common applications of nanomaterials with respect to current R&D activities. Hersam. Current and Emerging Developments Over the next ten years. combined supercapacitor and battery structures.C. Frost & Sullivan. Specific examples include thermoelectrics.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 nanomaterials will be essential to address major future global demands such as increased energy consumption and the ecological impact of products currently being used.. Mirkin C. with the objective of prioritising various technological focus areas for appropriately directing R&D investments in the nanomaterials domain. multifunctional platforms. transparent conductors. 74 This section aims to provide an overview of emerging manufactured nanomaterial technologies and potential applications. Retrospective and Outlook. optoelectronics. Common nanomaterial synthesis methods are varied. and all have specific requirements and limitations that affect their potential applications. 73 GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities. (2010) Nanotechnology Research Directions for Societal Needs in 2020. (2010) Nanomaterials – Strategic Portfolio Management. and catalysts. and sustainability of nanomaterials in a variety of emerging and converging technologies and applications. sensors/actuators. integration. and communication/computational systems.A. 74 75 76 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 41 . 73 5. nanotechnology researchers will focus on a range of issues to improve the performance. Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung. (2010) Nanomaterials – Strategic Portfolio Management.

(2010) Nanotechnology Research Directions for Societal Needs in 2020. surface functionalisation and matrix. energy efficiency. and sustainability of nanomaterials in a range of emerging and converging technologies. process control and quality control. implants and tissue engineering. 78 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 42 . This will lead to new applications in biosensors. reconfigurable. Stuttgart Roco.C.  Realisation of hierarchical metamaterials with independent tunability of previously coupled properties..g. cost. integration. Realisation of nanomaterials with biologically inspired attributes. there will be a focus on research to help improve the performance. selfhealing. Springer.A. including solving problems related to scale-up. 77 Looking forward. The development of these requires an understanding of the dynamic processes that are found in nature. paints.C. As identified by Roco et al (2010). implants and regenerative medicine). M. 77 GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities.  Combinatorial and computational approaches that enable efficient exploration of the vast phase space for nanocomposites.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Emerging synthesis methods include:  Inert gas condensation  Inert gas expansion  Molecular self-assembly  Sonochemical processing. fractionation and purification in an effort to realise nanomaterials with monodispersity in composition. shape.  Self-healing materials. and defect-tolerant structures in hybrid organic/inorganic media. biomimetic materials and bionanomaterials have been demonstrated but need to be transitioned to real applications (e. Retrospective and Outlook.and biomimetic materials. size and shape. Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung.  Improvements in nanomanufacturing capabilities. bio. M.. multifunctionality. 78 specific priorities for the next 10 years include:  Separation. including non-equilibrium. including the size. The synthesis and assembly of new functional bio-nanomaterials will require an understanding of the complex relations between nanoscale structure and function in biological materials. and will enable advances in nanomedicine. Mirkin C. Hersam. sustainability.. and composition of the nanoconstituents.

CNTs in polymer composites are expected to have a market pull in the following applications over the next decade:  Aeronautical applications. a uniform dispersion of MWNTs in the host matrix material will be especially critical. Carbon Nanotubes Among the numerous categories in the evolving field of newly synthesised nanomaterials. J. high electrical and high thermal conductivity. SWNTs and MWNTs exhibit uniquely different properties. which can be potentially offset by lighter-weight CNT polymer composite structures. driven by the unusual characteristics of CNTs. Like most manufactured nanomaterials. The CNT-polymer composites market is by far the largest product consumer of commoditygrade MWNTs and it is predicted to expand significantly. concentric SWNTs of different diameters). Since their discovery in 1991. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 43 . Breakthroughs in other matrix composites as well as smart network sensors are among other strong market contenders for CNT commodities. BCC Research. however. driven by the need for ever-demanding fuel conservation. carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are perhaps among the most dynamic and undergoing the most rapid pace of development.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Utilisation of new nanocomposite materials with unprecedented properties and unique combinations of properties in emerging and converging technologies.  Automotive applications. driven by the increasing awareness of climate change by governments leading to alternatives for polluting fossil fuel-based power sources. These properties include. CNTs exhibit uniquely different properties to other conventional materials. CNTs have aroused excitement in both the research community and equally in industry due to their potential for a broad range of new applications. 79 Oliver.. 79 CNTs are manufactured to have a variety of structures: the simplest structure consists of a single graphene layer structure (SWNT). In their simplest form CNTs represent seamless cylinders of graphene film with diameters close to only one nanometre. exceptional mechanical strength and flexibility. Other forms include double-walled carbon nanotubes (DWNT) and few-walled carbon nanotubes (FWNT). which also exhibit distinctive sets of properties. Due to their dimensional differences. among many unusual properties. they also exhibit an unprecedented range of properties unequalled by any other manufactured nanomaterials. For most applications of CNTs. (2010) Carbon Nanotubes: Technologies and Global Markets. nanotubes within nanotubes are referred to as multiwall carbon nanotubes (MWNTs.

.  Sports equipment applications. construction. Potential applications for nanofunctional materials include coatings.  Industrial seals used for military and aerospace applications. the opportunities for nanocoating application extends to everyday living. Functional or ‘Smart’ Materials Functional materials are responsive to external environments. catalysts and fuel cells. Some of these include: 80 Boehm. and may have impacts on commercial products like optical nanocoated fishing tackle. silver nanocoated refrigerators. driven by the promise to solve numerous problems associated with the handling and packaging of delicate electronic components. ranging from polymers with improved biodegradability to new adhesives and novel electrical conductors.  Flame retardant applications. food and beverage and electronics. building/construction materials. military and security. Functional materials include responsive hydrogels. composite materials. Polymer Nanomaterials Polymer nanomaterials are expected to dramatically advance as the chemical and nanoscale structures of polymers are engineered to create new polymers with a multitude of structural and functional applications. nanoelectronics. sensors. nanocoated guitar strings. in addition to improving the items that they produce. nanocomposites and hybrids of synthetic and biological matter to highlight a few. energy. textiles. F. 80 There are numerous examples of composites that form nanocoatings. temperature. (2010) Nanotechnology in Coatings and Adhesive Applications: Global Markets. BCC Research. health care. Their response can be used as a sensor or as an actuator. oilfield gaskets. including in aircraft. pressure or chemical. driven by the need for high-strength lightweight composites. and sports balls. hose and seals of all types and printer/copier fuser rolls. energy related materials. and fibre optic cable cladding. electronic packaging. Further. magnetic or electric fields. Numerous industry sectors globally already employ nanocoating technologies.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Electronic packing applications. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 44 . These include transportation. Nanocoatings Nanocoatings have the potential for enhancing the performance and durability of an extensive array of manufacturing processes.

optoelectronics. material sciences.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Gold and silver nanoparticles with polytetrafluorethylene (PTFE). infrastructure monitoring. Manufactured Nanomaterials with Applications in Nanomedicine According to the European Science Foundation (ESF) 82 . which exhibit enhanced antibacterial properties  Superparamagnetic metallic nanoparticles in monomers and/or polymers which exhibit an adhesive composition  Epoxy resin modified with fumed silica nanoparticles. semiconductor engineering and nanoscience. sensor detection. nanoelectronics and solar power generation/management to name a few.Technology Trends and Market Prospects. solid state physics. which increases fracture toughness and inhibits crack propagation. nanomedicine is defined as the science and technology of diagnosing. of relieving pain. including electrical engineering. It can also be described as any artificial material engineered to provide properties that might not be readily available in nature. Nanotechnology is used as a tool to develop metamaterials with improved properties and performance by controlling their nanostructure. These include:  Analytical tools  Nanoimaging  Manufactured nanomaterials and nanodevices  Therapeutics and drug delivery systems  Clinical. designed to achieve advantageous and unusual electromagnetic properties. regulatory and toxicology issues. The ESF further specifies that nanomedicine has mainly five subdivisions. remote aerospace applications. The possible applications for metamaterials is varied and diverse. treating and preventing disease and traumatic injury. using molecular tools and molecular knowledge of the human body. and of preserving and improving human health. 81 Frost & Sullivan (2010) Metamaterials-. European Science Foundation (2005) An ESF – European Medical Research Councils (EMRC) Forward Look report 82 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 45 . which can be interlinked. Potential applications for metamaterials include communication systems. requiring research and collaboration from many multidisciplinary fields. microwave and antennae engineering. Metamaterials 81 A metamaterial is an arrangement of artificial structural elements.

83 Nanomaterials are already playing a vital role in the development of nanomedicine. and preserving and improving dental health using nanoscale structured materials. usually gold..Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Nanomedicine covers a broad application spectrum that spans from diagnostics. Other manufactured nanomaterial technologies in R&D for health applications include: nanoscaffolding (selfassembling nanofibres). Opportunities for Nanotechnologies in Electronics–Technology Market Penetration and Roadmapping. relieving pain.An Outlook. 85 86 Frost & Sullivan. Barton. GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities. coated with a metallic outer layer. implantology. Some nanomaterials that are being explored for utilisation in electronics include CNTs. C. These include: 85  Nanobombs: modified fullerenes used for drug delivery inside viruses. tooth regeneration using nanostructures. (2009) Nano Enabled Products in Patient Monitoring . 83 84 Joshi. (2007). Nanomaterials have already started to have an impact in several of the dental specialities including periodontology. Business Insights. Stuttgart. used for drug delivery. Technical Insights. 84 Novel manufactured nanomaterials are emerging that may change the future delivery of small molecule. magneto- dendrimers and supramagnetic nanoparticles (for use in Magnetic Resonance Imaging. treating and preventing oral and dental disease. Business Insights. regenerative nanoparticles. A. diagnostics and medical devices. Nanodentistry is the science and technology of diagnosing. NANOTECHNOLOGY: Revolutionizing R&D to develop smarter therapeutics and diagnostics. Barton. NANOTECHNOLOGY: Revolutionizing R&D to develop smarter therapeutics and diagnostics. to imaging. such as nanomaterials in the manufacture of electronic components and devices such as transistors. orthodontics and endodontics. drug development and delivery. 86 Manufactured Nanomaterials with Applications in Nanoelectronics 87 Nanoelectronics incorporate nanotechnologies. used as platforms for delivery. The likely progression of nanoscience research in dentistry will result in the use of nanogold particles for periodontitis therapy. 2011. dental root implants using nanotextured surfaces. with materials such as dendrimers and DNA functionalised gold nanoparticles already approved for topical HIV and diagnostic purposes. and many more.  Nanoshells: hollow spheres of carbon. MRI detection). 87 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 46 . Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung. sensors. C. memories and display devices.  Nanotubes: graphite cylinders are only a few nanometers in diameter. soft and hard tissue reconstruction using nanofibrous biomimetric membranes. prosthetic dentistry. biocompatible nanomaterials and many more. Frost & Sullivan. (2007). macromolecules and nucleic-acid based therapies. nanoengineered blood.

9 per cent from 2010 through to 2015 (Table 8).10. The rapid increase in market demand for portable computing devices is driving the need for new and scalable low cost technology that helps achieve miniaturised components and devices. Other materials including quantum dots and nanocomposites are in their nascent stages of development and are expected to find widespread adoption in the longer term. Global Demand and Applications Global nanodevice sales are projected to grow from USD $35 million in 2010 to USD $234 million by 2015. Another relatively new area is Nanosensors which will continue to grow rapidly through to 2015.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 nanowires. magnetic. Nanodevices and Systems Nanodevices are critical enablers that allow the exploitation of the technological capabilities of electronic. In addition. a trend continuing into the future. Nano-HPLC (high-powered liquid chromatography) currently accounts for the most sales. highly anticipated developments in the market are forecast to be the © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 47 .10. Mobile phones with growing functionalities serve as a key driver in this regard. mechanical and biological systems. nanoparticles and graphene. Figure 7 highlights some of the key applications nanotechnology will have in the nanoelectronics field.1. 2011 5. Of the commercial nanodevices available. Figure 7: Nanotechnology Applications in Nanoelectronics Source: Frost & Sullivan. 5. representing a high CAGR of 45.

0 31. as well as other developmental nanodevices.7 16.0 20.7 150. research must focus on gaining a better understanding of the electronic. nano-sized structures and composites. Nanosensing devices detect analytes at molecular levels and are inherently more sensitive than any other configuration of sensing platforms. including applications such as environmental monitoring.0 31. 88 Table 8: Global Nanodevice Sales (Including Commercial Nanodevices).Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 commercialisation of drug production and mixing systems. security and defence. nanodevices are predominantly available in nano-HPLC technologies and for information technology. Nanosensors A nanosensor refers to any sensing device which is fabricated using nanomaterials.0 83. health care. magnetic and photonic interactions that occur at the nanoscale. 2010 2009 28.4 0. Through to 2015 (USD $ Million) APPLICATION Nano-HPLC Nanosensors Drug production and mixing systems TOTAL COMMERCIAL Developmental TOTAL Source: BCC Research. or whose construction involves any intricate fabrication procedures or manipulation of material at the nano-scale.0 3.5 4. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 48 .0 233.9 In order to continue to innovate and commercialise nanodevices. automotive.0 0. In the future. Nanotechnology: A Realistic Market Assessment Frost & Sullivan (2008) Advances in Nanosensors.4 -18.10. 89 A number of major enabling technologies and applications are identified below. 5. industrial processes. Current and Emerging Developments Nanodevices and nanosystems will have a large impact in an assorted array of applications.7 CAGR% 20102015 9. applications for these devices and systems will be diverse.0 35.9 0.0 35.8 -45.0 2010 30. Currently. and very importantly.0 0.4 2015 47.2.0 33. agriculture. Research and development work in this area has demonstrated the ability of nanostructures 88 89 BCC Research (2010).

CNTs enable new levels of sensing with unprecedented degrees of sensitivity.  Environmental remediation applications including applications in air. Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have a relatively large surface area to size ratio.  The oil and gas sector. Nanowires work by detecting small concentrations of substances by measuring changes in electrical characteristics in nanowires produced by the adsorption of the targeted specimen onto the nanowires. tunnelling in heavy industry.92  Healthcare. nanowires.  The food industry. nanosensors will assist in allowing the high throughput detection of uncharted oil and gas reserves. with most R&D initiatives instigated by specific market need or social pressure. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 49 .  Military and security use for the prompt detection of biological and chemical threats. Currently. Stuttgart. GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities. Nanowires are another high potential candidate that exhibits rapid responses with a substantially higher sensitivity and selectivity than the other conventional sensor configurations. nanosensors will assist in monitoring the health of crops and farm animals as well as water resource management.  The agricultural industry. Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung. nanosensors have not reached widespread commercialisation.  Environmental safety applications which will range from sensing toxic or flammable gas. nanobelts and quantum dots to function as sensors of various physical or biological phenomena. and therefore offer a greater area of contact for selected analytes to interact with the sensor platform. Some key future applications for nanosensor technology include: 91. 90 91 92 Frost & Sullivan (2008) Advances in Nanosensors. Frost & Sullivan (2008) Advances in Nanosensors. nanosensors will be used to monitor the levels of spoilage bacteria and other important indicators. Because of this. chemical detection in mining. 90 Nanosensors will serve as the enabling technology for performing certain detection activities which cannot be adequately obtained by employing other technology configurations. soil and water remediation. nanosensors will assist in monitoring the health of patients and the general public. and other hazardous areas to applications as simple as smoke detectors employed at homes and other commercial buildings.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 such as carbon nanotubes.

microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). nano-floatinggate devices. Frost & Sullivan (2008) Emerging Trends in Mass Data Storage Devices. Research will have applications in measurements for proteomic or genomic purposes. including Non-volatile Random Access Memory or NRAM. chemistry and biology) into a single sensor. NRAM is expected to be commercialised before 2015. 96 93 GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities. Stuttgart. System of Systems Research will focus on the engineering of new devices that can merge technologies from different science disciplines (physics. ferroelectric memory. such as data fusion. and phase-change chalcogenide memory. as well as revolutionising detection (including for high throughput screening of therapeutic compounds) and diagnosis by allowing for more rapid and more convenient highly multiplexed detection. 95 Other new memory technologies will include magnetic random access memory. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 50 .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  The automotive industry will look to invest in nanosensing mechanisms to enhance performance. minimise cost. and improve reliability when designing the vehicles of the future. 93 Memory Nanoscience is emerging in the field of computer and data storage. and  Their ability to add smartness by an adaptive and powerful signal processing. There are many next generation storage technologies currently in the research phase. Stuttgart. are expected to impact a wide range of application domains and data storage technologies. Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung. a technology that uses carbon nanotubes as the active memory element.  Their ability to communicate with other technologies (at the local stage). 94 In the future. Max-Planck-Institut für Metallforschung. This activity will be driven by:  The benefit of each technology. with their unique capabilities. 94 95 96 GENNESYS Whitepaper (2009) A New European Partnership between nanomaterials science and nanotechnology and synchrotron radiation and neutron facilities. This concept is often referred to as “system of systems” and is related to the “smart dust” (miniaturised sensor networks) concept. BCC Research (2010) 2010 Nanotechnology Research Review.  Their self-poweredness.

D.. organics semiconductors. particularly for the advancement of synthetic biology. Bronson. Roco. Hersam. resulting from increased complexity. Springer. Nanotechnology Geoengineering Geoengineering. M. micro and nanoscale instrumentation is one of the most promising areas for advancement and enabling effects. M. Currently. Mirkin C. 99 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 51 . Nanosystems 98 The focus of R&D and applications is expected to shift towards more complex nanosystems. sheets. also known as magnetoelectronics is a discipline based on the physical phenomena encountered in electrons. including: nonvolatile memory devices. chemical and biological components can be integrated with electronic logic and memory components on the same chip at a marginal cost. Molecular nanosystems such as molecular devices ‘by design’ will emerge. drug discovery. fluidic. large-scale intervention in the Earth’s oceans. This describes an array of technologies. magnetic sensors.C. genetics research.. tubes. Retrospective and Outlook. transdisciplinarity and convergence of other technological fields. The convergence of spintronics with other disciplines is forecast to enable the technology to have numerous applications. biomolecular spintronics biosensors. ETC Group. As optical.. Two of the most commonly discussed categories of geoengineering technologies are carbon dioxide removal (CDR) and solar radiation 97 98 Frost & Sullivan (2011) Advances in Spintronics/Magnetoelectronics. new areas of relevance and fundamentally new products. and quantum information and computation. modular assemblies) of various compositions with industrial-scale quantities is a priority. chemical assays and chemical synthesis are all likely to be substantially affected by these advances by 2015. Spintronic devices transfer information by the momentum of the intrinsic spin found in the electron. most of which are at the conceptual and research stages with their efficacy yet to be proven. In the near term. et al.A. The development of a library of nanostructures (particles. 99 is the intentional.C. (2009) Retooling the Planet? – Climate Chaos in the Geoengineering Age. (2010) Nanotechnology Research Directions for Societal Needs in 2020. as defined by the ETC Group. rather than using the electron charge as the main information carrier. wire. soils and/or the atmosphere with the aim of combatting climate change.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Spintronics / Magnetoelectronics 97 Spintronics.. integrated nanosystems are emerging in the form of technologies such as nanorobotics and guided assembling.

Exploring the Nano options.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 management (SRM). dendrimers and cross linked liposomes. Several dendrimer based nanostructures are under development for treating various cancers. K. 105 Emerging technologies such as needle free injectors. Roco.C. S. Hull. M.A. implantable. Mullins. topical. 104 Drug delivery is one of the fastest growing healthcare sectors of which nanodevices are set to dramatically influence and change in the short and long term.M. London: Elsevier. (2008) Drug Delivery .. ETC Group. 103 In Australia. S. Examples of emerging conceptual ideas utilising nanotechnology in geoengineering include: 101  Fertilise the ocean with iron nanoparticles to increase phytoplankton that theoretically sequester CO2  Covering snowpack or glaciers in the Arctic with insulating material or a nano-film to reflect sunlight and prevent melting  Artificially reducing the amount of sunlight absorbed by the Earth’s atmosphere by injecting reflective engineered nanoparticles into the stratosphere 102 Nanodevice and Nanosystem Applications in Nanomedicine Cancer therapy is an example where nanodevices have already been used.. M. & Bowman D. Mirkin C. et al. Retrospective and Outlook. 49–69.C. pp. Nanodevices have future potential in oral. 100 101 102 Bracmort. D. Regulation and Management.. and targeted drug delivery systems using carriers such as nanospheres will influence the industry. The nanodevices employed for cancer therapy include ceramic nanoparticles. Congressional Research Service. Hersam. There has been considerable progress in the development of synthetic multifunctional nanodevices. (2009) Retooling the Planet? – Climate Chaos in the Geoengineering Age. pulmonary. Frost & Sullivan (2009) Opportunities in Drug Delivery: Unlocking the Doors to Macromolecules. Currently. Are we willing to heed the lessons of the past? Nanomaterials and Australia’s Asbestos Legacy. Frost & Sullivan. et al. (2010). M. Findlay. (eds). there is research focused on developing “smart” nanodevices capable of detecting the tumour cells in vivo.. (2011) Geoengineering: Governance and Technology Policy. 103 104 105 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 52 . Nanotechnology Environmental Health and Safety: Risks. 100 Nanotechnology is believed to have the potential to offer certain tools which may be useful replacements or supplements to existing geoengineering techniques. terminating the cells and conveying the result. Dendrimers have shown immense multifunctional modularity. parenteral and other routes of drug delivery. New nanodevices can be tailored according to the desired functions and duties thanks to parallel progresses in the synthesis of colloidal systems with controlled characteristics.. (2010) Nanotechnology Research Directions for Societal Needs in 2020.. Springer. Starphama is a key company involved in R&D for dendrimer products for health and life science applications.. Bronson.

106 The convergence of nanotechnology and biotechnology capabilities with spintronics technologies will allow for the continued development of nanoscale systems that could be introduced into the body to perform basic diagnostic functions in a minimally invasive way. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 53 .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Nanosensors will also play an important part of nanomedicine. To enable the realisation of bioimplantable nanosensors. DNA sequencing and nucleic acid detection. glucose testing and in vivo radiation monitoring. blood screening. genomic testing. pharmacogenomics. Examples of clinical areas where nanosensors will be applied in the near and long-term include: the treatment of periodontitis and other oral and systemic diseases. 106 Frost & Sullivan (2008) Advances in Nanosensors. proteomics. further development is required to overcome the need for omission of batteries in the sensors’ design. providing new abilities to remedy health problems. The biosensing/biomedical sector is a niche market where currently nanosensor technology is primarily at the development and prototyping stage. respiratory monitoring. Clinical assays and point-of-care diagnosis are among the key industries where nanosensing mechanisms have been gaining increasing popularity. pathogen and virus detection.

108 This section builds a roadmap of biotechnologies. and the effectiveness and sustainability of substitutes. barriers and risks will play an important role in this. industry. Australian Government DIISR website.gov. accessed 31/08/2011. Hazardous Waste Management: Benefits from Biotechnology. Recent advances in molecular biology and genomics research are driving the growth of the biotechnology industry. innovation in biotechnology involves the development of techniques and technologies built on knowledge of living organisms.0 BIOTECHNOLOGY Biotechnology is defined by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) as the application of science and technology to living organisms. segmented by the following areas of application: medicine. and the opportunities for biotechnology in these areas are immense and diverse. industrial and agricultural. future innovation in biotechnology will occur through incremental change. goods and services. 107 On a basic level. technological change in the biotechnology industry remains rapid and disruptive. ethical considerations. The ability for many biotechnology products and services to become commercially viable depends on complex interactions between regulatory frameworks. environmental and other research and products  Diagnostics  Human therapeutics  Reagents and other active molecules. environmental and health risks. products and services in the biotechnology industry are currently:  Agricultural biotechnology research and products  Biofuel research and products  Bioinformatics  Chemical. The major activities. products and models thereof. and agriculture.innovation.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 6. Drivers. to alter living or non-living materials for the production of knowledge. available at http://www. the roadmap describes some 107 108 International Organization for Standardization (June 2011) WEBINAR ON BIOTECHNOLOGY Terms and Definitions. However. Given that incremental change in current biotechnologies play an important role in future innovation. which is currently experiencing revolutionary change. and the scaling-up of existing lab-bench technologies to a commercial scale. as well as parts. 108 The practical applications of biotechnology can be broadly categorised as medical.au/Industry/Biotechnology/IndustrialBiotechnology/ © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 54 . In addition to the development of completely novel technologies. Biotechnology as an industry is more advanced than nanotechnology or synthetic biology.

followed by Asia-Pacific with 26. According to Datamonitor (2010) the global biotechnology market.4 per cent of the market.1 summarises the existing global market for biotechnology products. with a CAGR of 10 per cent for the period 2005-2009. 6. manufacturing and marketing of products based on advanced biotechnology research.1. Biotechnology Global Market Overview Estimates of the size of the global biotechnology market and forecasts of its future performance differ depending on how the market is defined.7. North and South America accounted for 48. including forecasts of market growth and performance. consisting of the development.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 technologies that have already been commercialised. followed by projected future developments in the area. with emerging biotechnologies in medicine.6 per cent for the period 20092014. risks and disruptive potential associated with biotechnologies. This is followed by a discussion of opportunities. had total revenues of approximately USD $200 billion in 2009. barriers. 109 Datamonitor (2010). and Europe with 25. Global Biotechnology © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 55 . In terms of geographical distribution. but a small deceleration is forecast in the annualised growth rate to around 9. industry and agriculture mapped in Section 6.8.2 per cent. 109 Table 9 provides the historical and forecast size of the biotechnology market through to 2014.4 per cent of the global biotechnology market in 2009. Section 6. Emerging tools and platforms that are common to more than one application area of biotechnology are summarised in Section 6. Industry revenue growth held up well through the global financial crisis (GFC).

also known as ‘innovation capital’. but are not limited to: human therapeutics. many large biotechnology companies undertook drastic cost-cutting measures to survive. food and beverage and many more.8 193. declined by over 20 per cent in 2010. and R&D spending across established biotechnology centres fell by 21 per cent in 2009.6 per cent R&D spending Although the biotechnology industry fared well through the financial crisis. In 2009 the medical/healthcare segment was the most lucrative in 110 Ernst & Young (2011) Beyond Borders Global Biotechnology Report.3 9.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Table 9: Global Biotechnology Market Value.1 9.1 288.7 171.7 11. as the crisis has affected the ability of emerging companies to fund innovation.2 318. These figures can however be deceptive.9 219. bioinformatics.5 262.1 239. which is more or less on par with the amounts raised prior to the financial crisis. cuts in R&D spending may have a long term negative effect on industry performance.4 PER CENT GROWTH 12.2 per cent 9. 110 Without a future adjustment. R&D is by far the largest expense of companies in this industry. Access to Funds The total sum of funds raised by the biotechnology industry globally in 2010 was USD $25 billion.5 10.9 10.0 9. Total funding in the biotechnology sector minus large debt financings by mature profitable companies.8 12.5 9. industrial biotechnology. 2010 USD $ BILLION 136. agribiotech. 2005–14 (USD $ Billion) YEAR 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR: 2005–09 CAGR: 2009–14 Source: Datamonitor.2 200. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 56 .4 153.4 4. diagnostics. Market Segmentation Biotechnology products and applications are numerous and include.

© Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 57 . Ernst & Young (2011) Beyond Borders Global Biotechnology Report. Market dynamics fundamentally affect the commercial viability of emerging technologies and their uptake.(2011) Next Generation Biofuels and Synthetic Biology. and were less severely affected by the financial crisis than many developed economies. As an example.3 per cent of the market's overall value. Geographically.2. 2010 6. 111 Figure 8: Global Biotechnology Market Segmentation Source: Datamonitor. with total revenues of USD $133 billion. Markets for biotechnology products are in turn influenced significantly by national government agendas. D. The global value of biofuels subsidies was USD $11 billion in 2006. Wei. particularly India and China are growing in size and influence. 112 Emerging markets. the US Navy is investing heavily in the development of biofuels as part of a green fleet policy. Drivers It is the markets that support the uptake of new and emerging technologies that drive innovation in the biotechnology industry. equivalent to 66. Asian investors are showing increased interest in the biotechnology sector. Foundation for International Environmental Law and Development. and this is projected to increase to USD $50 billion in 2050. the largest biotechnology market has so far been the United States which is expected to grow at a compounded annual rate of seven per cent through to 2013. This is illustrated in Figure 8.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 the global biotechnology market. Global Biotechnology. and there is an ever increasing demand for biotechnology products in prosperous Asian markets. 113 The green fleet initiative also 111 112 113 Datamonitor (2010).

Such products include vaccines and medical therapies synthesised using 114 115 IBISWorld Australia (2011) Biotechnology in Australia. On a fundamental level. The translation and commercialisation of this research has produced novel products and technologies that have fundamentally changed the way we operate. The need for sustainability and resource use efficiency is driving the development of industrial and agricultural biotechnology.3. biotechnology enables better and more targeted scientific research. 115 6. especially in developing countries is driving the development of agricultural biotechnology. In agriculture. Opportunities Opportunities for the application of biotechnology are both immense and diverse. The subsections below discuss these opportunities and provide examples of potential future applications and benefits in emerging tools and platforms.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 highlights energy security concerns as a driver for countries without access to sufficient petroleum fuel reserves. 114 Australian Government renewable energy targets will drive biofuel use and production. This is especially true for ethically contentious areas of biotechnology such as transgenic technology and embryonic stem cell research. industrial biotechnology and agricultural biotechnology. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 58 . alternatives are required for current methods of irrigation and fertiliser use. The key trends and drivers identified in Section 3. concerns about environmental degradation drive the need for technologies that reduce waste and pollution and population growth. and increases our understanding of basic biology.0 have an important influence on the development of new biotechnologies. Key global drivers of biotechnology are echoed in Australia. Changes in the structure of this funding have been blamed for slower industry growth in recent years. Ageing populations are driving the development of new and more personalised medical therapeutics. Genetically modified (GM) technology in agriculture promises another ‘green revolution’ capable of meeting increased demand for food and reducing land use pressure. The Australian Federal Government provides grants and funding to biotechnology companies and research facilities. Fossil fuels and other petroleum based products need to be supplemented and eventually replaced. medical biotechnology. Frost & Sullivan (2011) White Biotechnology. This is a considerable challenge for the aviation industry where very few viable alternatives exist to current fuels. Favourable government regulation and availability of research funding are important drivers for biotechnology research. and Australia’s ageing population will drive demand for life enhancing and life extending drugs.

it is expected that renewable alternatives such as biofuels will become more competitive. Access to funds is therefore a significant barrier to the development and application of biotechnology. genetically engineered crops. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 59 . Ethical issues that may arise with the future developments in biotechnology.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 recombinant DNA technology.4. and fossil fuel reserves continue to be depleted. however such a discussion is outside the scope of this report. and commercialisation both in the public and private sectors. This is especially true for the application of rDNA technology in agriculture and human health. The use of embryonic stem cells in research is an example of a particularly contentious issue. and national governments are making significant investments in attracting the skills needed to develop and commercialise the next generation of biotechnologies. Finally. Similarly industrial biotechnologies such as bioplastics and biofuels are often significantly more expensive than existing fossil fuel alternatives. and the barriers that they will create are an important area for further investigation. where unintended consequences can potentially outweigh benefits of the technology. and as such is subject to a justifiably large regulatory burden. Other key barriers in the biotechnology industry are those which affect the development of appropriate research and technology transfer capability. ethical issues present an important barrier for the future development of biotechnology. The commercialisation of medical biotechnologies involves lengthy and expensive clinical trials. and truly restorative medicine. and biocatalysts used in industrial processing. and success rates for new technologies are notoriously low. although expensive will offer greater value than palliative care. Exciting areas of medical development such as pharmacogenomics and regenerative medicine remain prohibitively expensive. The regulatory burden placed on biotechnology has implications on funding requirements for research. 6. Barriers Biotechnology is the application of technology to living organisms. Competition for talent in the industry is fierce. In many cases the science and technology is advancing faster than the ethical debate. and offer solutions to some of the major national and international challenges facing Australia. Emerging biotechnologies will continue to drive both evolutionary and revolutionary change. The cost to the consumer of new and emerging biotechnologies is a major barrier for horizon 2 and horizon 3 innovations. Biotechnology in the private sector is characteristically capital intensive and high risk. As global demand for fuel increases. In the far term the cost of personalised medicine is expected to reduce significantly.

abc. 116 This incidence of unintended insertional oncogenesis as a result of gene therapy highlights the potential risks of medical biotechnology. and the treatment was successful in 18 individuals. QTCN News and Views. M. B.5. In Western Australia there is an ongoing court case in which organic farmer Steve Marsh is seeking compensation from his neighbour for the genetically modified contamination of his organic canola seed crop. ABC Rural website. D. T-cell lymphoproliferative syndrome developed in five of the children. The New England Journal of Medicine.B. Other important risks in medical biotechnology include privacy concerns associated with the generation and use of an individual’s genetic information. It is however important to dispassionately compare the risks of emerging medical biotechnologies with those of the existing standard of care. and ethical considerations of providing clinically actionable genetic information direct to consumers without providing expert genetic counselling. Risks Associated with Medical Applications As with any new therapeutic. Varischetti. available at: http://www. 20 infants suffering from X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency disease (SCID) were treated with gene therapy. The mitigation of these risks 116 117 Kohn. The health and safety of consumers is the primary practical concern. Risks The debate about the various risks associated with rDNA technology and genetically modified organisms (GMOs) has persisted since the emergence of these technologies over 30 years ago. followed by the ethical implications of the manipulation of living organisms.net. (2011) WA farmer suing his neighbour over GM contamination. (2009) Gene therapy fulfilling its promise. medical biotechnology therapeutics carry the risk of unintended or poorly understood side-effects. one of whom died as a consequence. (2011) Direct to consumer (DTC) genomics has been one of the moreinteresting and contravertial developments of the genomics revolution. increasing corporate control of the global seed supply. 118 Other concerns relating to the use of biotechnology in agriculture include increasing dependence on seed companies by farmers.au/rural/wa/content/2011/07/s3280309. Thomas. Adverse consequences observed in gene therapy clinical trials conducted in the year 2000 have been widely publicised. 117 Risks Associated with Agricultural and Industrial Applications The use of GM technology in agriculture and industrial biotechnology raises concerns of the unintentional release of transgenic material into the environment. 118 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 60 . accessed 3/07/2011.. In the case of SCID. and acquired resistance to insecticides and herbicides in pests. Two to five years after this seemingly successful clinical trial. M. and Candotti. even with the complications described. gene therapy treatment is comparable to existing treatments.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 6.htm .D.

While this is true for first generation biofuels using food crops. In industrial biotechnology. and as such it is difficult to determine the disruptive potential of biotechnology alone. Innovations in biotechnology. where GM products (other than medicines) have not made it to supermarket shelves in significant numbers. which has in turn led to the development of new products and technologies across a number of industry sectors. and this trend is expected to continue into the future. 119 It is important for consumers and the public at large to have access to accurate information of both the benefits and risks of emerging biotechnologies. As highlighted. Biotechnology has enabled revolutionary improvements in our understanding of basic biology. there is a current trend towards the convergence of scientific disciplines in the practical application of scientific knowledge. Methods used for the production of pharmaceuticals have already changed significantly as a result of biotechnology. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 61 . Perceived risks of biotechnology products are particularly high in Europe. Similarly the convergence of stem cell technology and materials science is enabling de novo tissue generation. (2004) The real and perceived risks of genetically modified organisms.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 depends largely on the effectiveness of regulatory measures. Examples of this convergence identified in the roadmap include nanotechnology and molecular biology converging in the development of nanopore sequencing devices. and algae. EMBO reports.6. in conjunction with other emerging technologies in the areas of ICT and nanotechnology are set to revolutionise healthcare in the coming decades. Disruptive Potential The disruptive influence of biotechnology has played out significantly already. H. The application of disruptive biotechnologies will increasingly occur through significant convergence of disciplines. there is a risk that biofuel production will lead to an increase in competition for land use (food vs fuel). 119 Torgersen. and a thorough scientific understanding of risks involved. Consumer risk perceptions toward biotechnology products are an important factor in their acceptance and uptake. Nanoscale particles are also playing an increasingly important role in drug delivery. 6. second and third generation biofuels will make use of organic waste. feedstock grown on marginal land. In this sense it is the second and third horizon enabling technologies that are addressing risks present in existing technology. and this trend is set to continue.

John Wiley & Sons. Innovation and Skills. Sophisticated biocatalysts will replace existing reagents. 121 This will occur in conjunction with networked and precision farming. 122 Finally. Department for Business. Emerging Tools and platforms will affect the development and application of biotechnology over a number of industry sectors. Technology and Innovation Futures. (2010) Technology Annex. London. et al. Telemedicine and e-health. and improvements in food packaging and storage technology. 120 In addition to changes the model of healthcare delivery. In addition to increasing yield. (2011) Biocatalysts for Green Chemistry and Chemical Process Development. and produce sustainable alternatives to petroleum-based products. and will cause changes to a myriad of existing industrial processes. Section 6. in industry. J.8 describes emerging biotechnologies by area of application: medical. biotechnology will contribute to the sustainability of agriculture.8. and will drive changes toward more sustainable farming practices. There is a current trend away from the traditional practice of intuitive medicine. through less hazardous chemical synthesis. P. For each emerging tool and platform. enabling the novel field of nanobiotechnology. 123 6. In agriculture. emerging biotechnologies will necessitate significant investments in new plant and equipment. and provide superior patient outcomes. 120 121 Yellowlees. Disruptive agricultural biotechnologies such as GM crops have the potential to provide significant yield increases and address global food shortages. Reeves. T. Emerging Biotechnology Techniques The following section describes the key emerging tools and platforms that enable the development of new biotechnologies. currently available technologies promise only incremental increases in yield. and will reduce pollution from industry.4 discusses the convergence of biotechnology with nanotechnology. towards a future of precision medicine..Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Technological changes in diagnostic and therapeutic capability necessitate fundamental changes in the delivery of healthcare. Biorefineries will change the management of organic waste. likely future technological developments are described. Section 6. Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre. Austrialian Agronomy Conference.7. new and more effective therapeutics will allow clinicians to address a wider range of diseases. et al. and safer solvents and reaction conditions will be made possible. Tao. Biotechnology will enable the design of safer chemicals and products. 122 123 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 62 . G. (2011) Disruptive Innovation: The future of healthcare?. (2003) The potential for biotechnology in sustaining agriculture. industrial and agricultural biotechnology.

allowed for the inexpensive production of large volumes of sequence data. industry. 124 DNA sequencing remains a rapidly advancing and disruptive technology. The Human Genome project took 10 laboratories 13 years to complete in 2003 and cost USD $3 billion. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 63 .000. M. For the two decades prior to 2004. (2010) Sequencing technologies – the next generation. Metzker. available at: www. DNA sequencing relied largely on variations of the first generation automated Sanger method. and agriculture. Over the past decade technological advances have led to exponential decreases in the cost of genome sequencing (Figure 9). The advent of next generation high-throughput sequencing technology. and has driven developments in biotechnology for the last three decades. sequencing technology has advanced considerably. Nature Reviews Genetics. and future developments in this area will enable progress in biotechnology and its practical applications in medicine. 125 124 125 National Human Genome Research Institute website. accessed 11/07/2011. Since its discovery.genome.gov. If it was started from scratch today it would take a week and cost about USD $25. Next generation sequencing is an enabling technology with enormous disruptive potential in the biotechnology industry.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Second Generation DNA Sequencing Technologies The ability to ascertain DNA sequence information has revolutionised our understanding of the life sciences. such as massively parallel sequencers.

8. electronics. Future interdisciplinary research enabled by next generation sequencing will lead to rapid improvements in disease intervention.. In the longer term emerging disruptive technologies such as nanopore sequencing promise massive reductions in both the cost of full genome sequencing and the time required. including genomic medicine. J. Over the next decade further advances in sequencing technology. nanotechnology and materials science engineering. (2010) Career snapshots: next-generation sequencing. biochemistry. Nature Reviews Drug Discovery. 126 Third Generation DNA Sequencing Technologies Further improvements in DNA sequencing technology will rely on the convergence of molecular biology. and Rothberg. applied and clinical research and clinical management. in conjunction with the study of the ‘omes’ will enable the creation of a new generation of biotechnologies. D.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Figure 9: Cost of DNA sequencing per genome 2001-2011 Source: NHGRI The ability to rapidly and inexpensively sequence large areas of DNA has changed the way researchers think about scientific approaches in basic. physics. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 64 . inexpensive nanopore sequencing has 126 Branton. discussed in Section 6.000 in around 24 hours. drug discovery and treatment selection. DNA sequencing technology that incorporates a nanopore-based device has potential to create instruments capable of sequencing a diploid mammalian genome for approximately USD $1. Progress towards the goal of fast. In the near term it is expected that modest technological improvements in DNA sequencing technology will continue.

Green. available at: www. Following the advent of next generation sequencing technology.nih. 132 Currently the technological infrastructure needed to analyse whole genome data is available only in large genome research centres. D. 129 Bioinformatics Bioinformatics (computational biology) is the application of information sciences and technologies to make the vast.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 been both impressive and encouraging. and the engineering of networks and objects to understand and manipulate regulatory mechanisms.com/omics/. 130 131 132 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 65 . accessed 12/07/2011. Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre. (2009) Next generation gap. Nature Omics Gateway website. interactions and relationships between them. 130 Developments in bioinformatics necessitate the significant convergence of disciplines such as mathematics. computer science. treatment of disease. the study of the omes enables improved understanding of genes and proteins. 127 Omics Omics is a broad term for the discipline of science and engineering that analyses the interactions of biological information in the various ‘omes’. 127 128 129 Branton. proteome and glycomics (carbohydrates). (2011) Charting a course for genomic medicine from base pairs to bedside. et al (2008) The potential and challenges of nanopore sequencing. This may well occur through decentralised cloud computing solutions allowing access to significant hardware power and at a reasonable cost. Biomedical Information Science and Technology initiative website. accessed 12/07/2011. D. physics. McPherson. but rather the computational challenges of data analysis. 131 There is a growing gap between the output of massively parallel sequencers and the ability to process and analyse the resulting data. and gene technology.gov. the largest bottleneck in whole genome sequencing is no longer data generation. D. Nature. In the next decade it is likely that this computational power will become available to individual investigators and medical practitioners. It is unclear when this technology will be commercialised. engineering.nature. Nature Methods Suppliment. (2010) Technology Annex. epigenome. namely the genome. biology and behavioural science. Research and discoveries in omics have far reaching implications across areas of biotechnology such as drug discovery. Nature Reviews Biotechnology. available at: www. diverse and complex life science data now available more understandable and useful. Technology and Innovation Futures. Innovation and Skills. transcriptome.bisti. London. Department for Business. 128 Using the enormous quantities of biological data currently being produced. et al. but some significant challenges remain to be overcome.

8. enzymes and other biological compounds. The technology can also be used to knock out genes of interest. Advances in DNA microarray technology. This technology is already advanced and has been used to produce a variety of transgenic organisms from microbes to mammals. available at: http://www. 133 Similar developments will occur in medical and industrial biotechnology. Epigenetic regulation occurs 133 134 Dunwell. 134 In the near future improved microarrays will be used by researchers to better understand gene regulation.3) zinc finger nuclease (ZFN) technology. Epigenetics Epigenetics describes changes in the expression of genes that occur without a change in the DNA sequence itself. In crop biotechnology (discussed in Section 6. currently under development. Future improvements in gene targeting and mutation methods will enable the construction of transgenic organisms more efficiently and effectively. cell proliferation and disease progression. allowing for the commercialisation of crops with multiple transgenic traits. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 66 . This will in turn drive further research discovery and allow for the production of useful compounds. Microarray Technology DNA microarray technology is currently used as a lab-based method for profiling gene expression for a number of different genes and a given tissue type. bringing together DNA sequences that do not occur in nature.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Recombinant DNA Technology Recombinant DNA (rDNA) technology is a fundamental tool in biotechnology and enables the introduction of foreign DNA into a host organism. Recent advances in microarray technology have allowed a shift from studying individual functions of several genes to global investigations of cellular activity. Transgenic organisms have invaluable applications in the production of medicines.aspx?IssueId=468&SearchMode=1. with a wider range of novel traits. a method used in research to examine the function of specific genes. This will also allow the stacking of multiple transgenes in a single site.sigmascan. (2010) Crop biotechnology: prospects and opportunities. In the longer term microarrays will form part of advanced and sensitive medical diagnostics for the prescription of individually administered therapeutics. J. Sigma Scan. An epigenetic trait is one that is stably heritable and results from changes in a chromosome without alterations to the DNA sequence. 2010. Journal of Agricultural Science.org/Live/Issue/ViewIssue. is expected to greatly accelerate the production of transgenic crop varieties. In biological research transgenic animals can be used to model human disease and enable the discovery and development of human therapeutics.

and the study of epigenetics provides a molecular basis for understanding the interaction between nature and nurture. RNAi technology harnesses this mechanism to silence or knock down specific genes. (2010) Epigenetics: an emerging player in health and disease. The NIH project also aims to support the development of new technology in epigenetics such as in vivo mapping of epigenetic changes in cells. 138 RNAi technology has developed rapidly from an interesting observation to an invaluable research tool. diet. diagnostic methods. NIH Roadmap Epigenomics Project website. accessed 1/09/2011. One objective of the program is to produce high resolution genome-wide maps of epigenetic modifications in different cell types. In the next decade RNAi will be used to create a new generation of medical therapeutics. Nature Immunology. 137 This research is facilitated by aforementioned enabling technologies such as microarray. The impact of environmental factors such as smoking.. One epigenetic mechanism with particularly promising therapeutic potential is RNA interference (RNAi). Other important molecules involved in this process include micro RNA (miRNA) and small interfering RNA (siRNA). accessed 1/08/2011. 135 It has also been found that some pathogens can interfere with the epigenome of an infected cell. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 67 . physical activity and pollutants on disease pathology is thought to be mediated in part by epigenetics.L. available at: http://www.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 through a number of different molecular mechanisms. B. RNA Interference RNAi is a molecular mechanism mediated by RNA that controls the activity of genes in living cells.html . available at: www. There is immense interest in the development of RNAi technology in a number of settings. J. (2010) Tools and landscapes of epigenetics. and in agricultural biotechnology to improve disease resistance and reduce un-desirable qualities in transgenic 135 136 137 138 Stauffer. The technology involves the use of double stranded RNA (dsRNA) molecules produced in vitro to induce a potent gene-silencing process. 136 Epigenetics is an emerging area of research. C. and treatments for disease. high-throughput sequencing and bioinformatics. and in 2008 the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) began funding for the ‘roadmap epigenomics project’. RNAi is a robust and specific tool for gene knockdown. and already has a number of practical commercial applcations. and in the long term will enable the development of a new generation of therapeutics. There is also significant commercial interest in epigenetics and its ability to produce new therapeutic targets. to accelerate progress in the field. tissues and eventually whole organisms. disease mechanisms. Epigenetic research will improve general understanding of basic biological processes.com .nature. T.A. and DeSouza. Tarakhovgsky. Appl Physiol.com/focus/rnai/index. Nature RNA interference website.roadmapepigenomics.

In the next decade. can be expected to become available. F1000 biology reports © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 68 . stem cells reside among differentiated cells in tissues and organs. iPS cells behave similarly to embryonic stem cells although epigenetic differences have been observed 141 Cells can be reprogrammed by a number of methods. Under specific conditions. N. Stem Cell Technologies Stem cells are proliferative and self-renewing cells that are capable of differentiating into the array of specialised mature cells that constitute a given organ. or somatic stem cells. meaning that the cells differentiate into cell types seen in organs or tissues other than those expected from the cells' predicted lineage. and create better models to understand human disease. Med. Rev. has developed viral-free methodology to generate iPS cells for clinical applications. Most adult stem cells are multipotent. stem cells can be used to replace cells lost due to pathology.8. the development of more efficient and effective cell reprogramming protocols. et al (2007) The leading edge of stem cell therapeutics.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 plants. meaning that they can become any cell type present in the human body. and more methods that do not require integration of transgenes. and the production of human proteins in stable human cell lines. F. et al (2009) Induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells: an up-to the minute review. Annu. 140 Induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell technology. Disease models using human cell lines will decrease the need for animal models in medical research. In this rapidly developing field. Clinically. 139 Human embryonic stem cells (hESC) are pluripotent. The improved generation and propagation of human cell types in culture will allow the development of vaccines for human/primate specific viruses. Stem cells derived either from hESC or adult tissue will revolutionise applications for improved drug discovery. et al (2008) Stem cell-based therapies for spinal cord injury. Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine Lau. Rishi. Current and potential future applications of RNAi technology are discussed in more detail in Section 6. These cells are known as adult stem cells.. I. better understand the biology of regeneration. In the adult. researchers are only beginning to understand the mechanism and kinetics of iPS cell reprogramming. Recent work however.. Increases in our understanding of stem cell biology and manipulation will enable technological development in the following areas: 139 140 141 Singec. capable of developing into mature cells of the organ or tissue in which they reside. certain adult stem cells have the ability to transdifferentiate. originally developed by Yamakana (2006) allows differentiated adult cells to be reprogrammed. many of which rely on rDNA technology and the use of viruses. T.

clinical care based on genomic information.1. Biotechnology Applications 6. therapeutics. allowing longer-term propagation and scale-up of stem cells  Improved directed cell-differentiation technology  More efficient iPS cell reprogramming  Efficient iPS cell reprogramming and using viral-free methods  Incorporation of materials science technology (intelligent materials) for construction of organs in vitro and for transplantation/integration in the body The use of stem cells in medical therapies is discussed further in Section 6. and the role of genomic structural variation in disease 142 . analysis and treatment.8.1. Green et al (2011) describe an emerging era of genomic medicine.8. This technology will have major implications for drug discovery and development. and predicts the way that research accomplishments will change over the next decade and beyond. the molecular basis of inherited disease. (2011) Charting a course for genomic medicine from base pairs to bedside. Genomic research has so far produced new insights into cancer. and patient management. and pharmacogenomics are described as follows. Future improvements in the areas of diagnostics. 6. facilitated by next generation sequencing technology and computational biology is fundamentally changing our understanding of the biology of disease. Figure 10 below schematically represents accomplishments across five domains of genomic research.8. Nature © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 69 . Medical Biotechnology Genomic Medicine Progress in genomics. Between 2011 and 2020 increases in our understanding of the biology of disease will enable the creation of new therapies and advanced healthcare.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Improved cell culture conditions. 142 Green et al.

False diagnoses and the resulting ineffective treatments will be greatly reduced. 2011 Genomic Diagnostics Over the next decade. lowering the cost of healthcare. improved diagnosis of disease is clinically valuable. improvements in biotechnology tools mentioned in Section 6. the increased knowledge of microbial pathogens will lead to improved vaccine © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 70 . Rapid and accurate diagnosis can also provide psychological benefits to patients and their families. as described by Green et al (2011). An individual’s genomic information can be stored as a component of e-health records. In addition to improved diagnosis of disease. the genes responsible for most Mendelian (monogenic) disorders will be better categorised enabling more accurate and earlier diagnoses for these disorders. In the longer term. and this approach has already proved successful particularly for cancer drugs. allowing improved diagnosis.4 will allow the measurement of cell level and organism level genotypes and phenotypes. and more targeted treatment of disease. and will assist with drug management. Genomic Therapeutics Achievements in genomic research will help to identify new targets for drug development.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Figure 10: Schematic representation of accomplishments across five domains of genomics research Source: AIC (adapted from Nature Biotechnology). In addition to human genomics. individuals that are genetically susceptible to adverse drug reactions can be identified early on. Even in the absence of a treatment.

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design. New and improved pharmaceuticals are expected to continue to become commercially available over the next ten years. Genomic information will also allow for the improved design of clinical trials. The selection of clinical trial participants based on genomic information will enable the use of smaller numbers of participants, and increase statistical power of findings. Patients can also be targeted at appropriate stages of their illness for the trail.

Pharmacogenomics
Over the next decade Green et al (2011) expect more drug prescriptions to be guided by the individual patients’ genetic makeup. This practice is already commonplace for the prescription of Abacavir, an antiretroviral drug. Several other drugs such as Tamoxifen (breast cancer drug), Clopidogrel (blood clot inhibitor), and Warfarin (blood thinning agent) will be administered with genetic guidance. Cancer therapies will be increasingly selected based on genetic tumour subtypes. In the longer term, DNA, RNA and protein tests for patients may become as commonplace as traditional laboratory analysis.

RNA-based Therapeutics
Therapeutics based on RNA technology are in their infancy, and technological advances in the area show enormous potential for future drug development. There are a small number of RNAbased therapeutics currently available on the market, and many more are currently undergoing clinical trials. RNA therapeutics is predicted to become one of the fastest growing therapeutic classes in the pharmaceutical market by 2020. 143 RNAi as a therapeutic strategy has an advantage over small-molecule drugs, as virtually all genes are susceptible to targeting by siRNA molecules. 144 A major limitation of existing medicines is the ability to target only a limited number of proteins involved in disease pathways. 145 This class of therapeutic therefore holds enormous promise for expanding the possible number of druggable targets. 146 Unlike gene therapy, RNAi based therapeutics need not occur through the insertion of genetic material into the host genome. Delivery is however the most significant barrier to the widespread use of RNAi therapeutics in a clinical setting, and the development of safe and

Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre, (2010) Technology Annex, Technology and Innovation Futures, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, London.
144 145 146

143

Czech, M. et al. (2011) RNAi-based therapeutic strategies for metabolic disease. Melnikova, I. (2007) RNA-based therapies, Nature Reviews Drug Discovery. Whitehead, K. et al (2009) Knocking down barriers: advances in siRNA delivery, Nature Reviews Drug Discovery.

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effective delivery mechanisms is essential. For example, lipid-based carriers of siRNA therapeutics that allow improved targeting of the liver are currently being assessed in clinical trials for the treatment of hypercholesterolaemia 147 . In the future it is expected that nanoparticles comprised of polymers, lipids, or conjugates will play an important role in systemic siRNA application. In addition to this, chemical modifications to siRNA molecules will help to minimise non-specific effects and evade immune defences in vivo, and tissue-specific ligands will enable better targeting.

Gene Therapy
Gene therapy is the insertion of genetic material into an individual’s cells and tissues as a treatment for disease. Gene therapy builds on advances in rDNA technology, and makes use of a variety of vectors and gene transfer methods to accomplish its objective. Although the technology remains in its infancy, it has been used with some success and as of 2007 over 1340 gene therapy clinical trials had been completed. 148 Progress has been set back by unfortunate cases of serious adverse events. Despite these setbacks, gene therapy has made significant progress towards clinical efficacy. Recent high-profile clinical studies have reported success in correcting inherited forms of retinal degeneration, severe combined immunodeficiency, and adrenoleukodystrophy. 149 The majority of gene therapy clinical trials so far have been aimed at the treatment of cancer, and patients enrolled in gene therapy clinical trials have typically tried several other treatments that have failed. In the near term (horizon 1) new approaches to gene therapy and new methods of gene transfer will enable the treatment of a wider range of diseases, and more site-specific integration of genetic material. The use of RNAi technology in gene therapy is particularly promising, and this area has significant potential over horizon 2/3.

Stem Cell Therapies
Recent advances in stem cell biology promise to enable the development of a new generation of regenerative therapies. Such therapies will use stem cell and iPS cell derivatives that mimic the normal biology of cells or tissues to restore function for degenerative diseases following transplantation. 150,151 Stem cells from bone marrow have been used for over 30 years to treat

147 148 149 150

Czech, M. et al. (2011) RNAi-based therapeutic strategies for metabolic disease. Edelstein, M.L., et al. (2007) Gene therapy clinical trials worldwide to 2007 – an update, The Journal of Gene Medicine. Mavilio, F. (2010) Gene Therapy: back on track, EMBO reports Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre (2010) Technology and Innovation Futures, Technology Annex

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cancer patients with conditions such as leukaemia and lymphoma, and other cell-based therapies have been launched more recently, mainly with a dermatological or orthopaedic focus. There is currently significant investment in the development of new regenerative therapies, but the widespread practical application of most of these therapies is still in the horizon 2-3 timeline. The current development pipeline of cell-based therapies is displayed in Table 10. Table 10: Current Pipeline of Cell-Based Therapies in Development
CLINICAL PHASE Phase I Phase II Phase III TOTAL
Source: Cell Stem Cell Forum, 2010

CELL-BASED THERAPIES 38 24 6 68

LARGE COMPANY-SPONSORED THERAPIES 0 3 (Teva, Baxter, Genzyme) 0 3 (5%)

Diseases that can potentially be addressed by stem cell-based therapies include cardiac disease, autoimmune disorders, endocrine/metabolic disorders, central nervous system pathology, diabetes, liver degenerative diseases, and others. Stem cell therapies hold significant promise for spinal cord injury (SCI) repair, but their true potential has not yet clearly been shown. 152 Additionally stem cell based therapies have potential applications in the repair of degenerative neurological diseases. For example, the transplantation of dopamine-producing neurons may be used to treat Parkinson’s disease patients. Considerable progress has been made towards these therapies and a myriad of others, but several issues remain to be addressed before clinical application. 153 Risks such as tumour formation and abnormal circuit formation (in the case of SCI repair) must be weighed against potential benefits of the therapy. The convergence of stem cell technology and materials science is driving research into the de novo construction of complex tissues and organs. Biodegradable cell scaffolds with inbuilt growth factors can potentially be seeded with cells in vitro and later implanted into patients. Current research seeks to regenerate components of gastrointestinal, vascular, pulmonary and genitourinary systems. 154 So far proof-of-concept studies have been successful in regenerating bladder, trachea and vasculature. Biotechnology company Tengion has initiated a phase I clinical trial of a bladder regeneration platform. The product is being developed for cancer patients who require removal of a cancerous bladder, and it removes the need to use the patient’s own bowel in reconstruction of the urinary tract, potentially avoiding many

151 152 153 154

McKernan, R., et al. (2010) Pharma’s Developing Interest in Stem Cells, Cell Stem Cell Forum Sahni, V., and Kessler, J. (2010) Stem cell therapies for spinal cord injury, Nature Reviews Neurology Kim, S.U., and de Vellis, J. (2009) Stem cell-based cell therapy in neurological diseases. Basu, J and Ludlow, J. (2010) Platform technologies for tubular organ regeneration, Trends in Biotechnology

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available at: www. chemicals. less industrial pollution and resource conservation. Industrial Biotechnology Industrial biotechnology (IB). IBISWorld Australia (2011) Biotechnology in Australia. The applications of IB are developed and adopted across a wide range of industrial markets.com Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre. Technology and Innovation Futures. including minerals and fuel.79 billion in 2010. Department for Business. 155 Other tissue regeneration therapies are likely to follow the bladder regeneration platform through the clinical trials process over the next 5-10 years. including 2010 revenue from each segment:  Biofuels – USD $39. Industrial biotechnology is an emerging industry. accessed 02/09/2011. The global IB market was valued at USD $75. energy. 158 The economic and social benefits of IB include greater manufacturing efficiency and lower production costs. and growth is driven by technological development. 6. systems and substances to produce and process materials and chemicals. (2010) Technology Annex. is the use of biological processes. food and feed. London. making them ideal vehicles for the delivery of therapeutic molecules for central nervous system disorders. The emergence of new industrial biotechnologies is enabled by developments in other areas of life sciences such as genomics.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 complications. also known as white biotechnology. Innovation and Skills. IB is the application of life science tools to conventional manufacturing and industry. Neural stem cells particularly exhibit a remarkable ability to migrate to areas of the brain damaged by pathology. Frost & Sullivan (2011) White Biotechnology.69 billion 155 156 Tengion website. A major limitation of gene therapy is the inability for therapeutic molecules to be delivered to specific tissue areas. 157 UK Department for Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (2009) Maximising UK Opportunities from Industrial Biotechnology in a Low Carbon Economy. stem cells have potential applications as vehicles for the delivery of gene therapy. 159 Major market segments of industrial biotechnology are categorised below.tengion. In addition to the replacement of cells lost due to pathology and damage. resulting in new and improved methods to make industrial raw materials. 158 159 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 74 . intermediate and consumer goods or to manage waste.157 On a fundamental level. 156.2. Molecules released during acute or chronic injuries have been found to be chemoattractants for neural stem cells.8. and pulp and paper. Genetically modified neural stem cells could potentially integrate seamlessly into the brain while continuing to express a foreign transgene. textiles.

The fastest growth in biofuel production has occurred over the last decade.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Pharmaceutical ingredients – USD $22. The inflation of food prices as a direct result of biofuel production presents a significant risk. To achieve this vision.24 billion  Personal care ingredients – USD $0. The annual global value of biofuel subsidies was USD $11 billion in 2006. 161 In a recent technology roadmap of biofuels for transport. Given the rapidly growing demand for food and fibre. typically tax incentives. 160 161 International Energy Agency (2011) Biofuels for Transport. and the rising cost of crude oil is a major driver for biofuel production. 160 This production is supported by various government policies. driven by desire to reduce carbon dioxide emissions in the transport sector and improve energy security. Foundation for International Environmental Law and Development © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 75 . and in 2010. Technology Roadmap Wei. the total quantity of biofuels produced was over 100 billion litres.23 billion. and they have the potential to supplement and eventually replace petroleum based fuels for many applications. The abatement of this risk relies on increased use of residues and waste in biofuel production. The following section builds a roadmap of key emerging technologies in industrial biotechnology. (2011) Next Generation Biofuels and Synthetic Biology. the IEA estimate that around 100 million hectares of land will be required to produce biofuel feedstock in 2050. the International Energy Agency (IEA) envision that by 2050 biofuels will comprise 27 per cent of total world transport fuel consumed. Uptake of biofuels without government support is dependent on the relative cost of fossil fuels. subsidies and blending mandates defining the proportion of biofuel to be used in transport fuel.27 billion  Enzymes – USD $4. and minimise the economic and political volatility surrounding fossil fuel reserves. competition for land poses a significant challenge to this vision.32 billion  Bioplastics – USD $0. along with sustainably grown energy crops. and is set to rise to USD $50 billion in 2050. Biofuels Biofuels are liquid and gaseous fuels derived from organic matter. Biofuels promise to reduce carbon emissions. Large scale investment in the commercial production of biofuels began in the 1970s. D.06 billion  Food and feed – USD $9.

Figure 11 summarises the current commercialisation status of a number of biofuel technologies. The advanced biofuels category combines second generation biofuels and algae biofuels.algae biofuels are sometimes referred to as third generation biofuel and are manufactured from photosynthetic algae. and GM plant species can produce specialised biofuel feedstock. The following section describes areas of technological development for each of these biofuel categories.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 New and emerging biofuel technologies will improve and encourage the production of biofuels from waste. The use of advanced biotechnology in biofuels production is becoming increasingly important. biocatalysts are used during processing of biomass. derived primarily from food crops.  Third generation . A risk presented by emerging biofuel technologies is the potential for invasive plant species and GM organisms used as feedstock to cause unintended environmental damage.  Second generation . algae biofuels will use genetically engineered microalgae. Biofuel technology can be classified into a number of generations of technological development:  First generation . rather than food crops as is currently the case. Development and propagation of biofuel feedstock will require careful regulation. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 76 . The manufacturing process requires enzymatic digestion and fermentation.conventional biofuels are those manufactured from sugar. residues and feedstock grown on marginal land. and is currently an area of significant technological innovation and development.advanced biofuels are those manufactured from non-food crops and lignocellulose wastes. starch and vegetable oil. The majority of biofuels that are currently produced in commercial quantities fall into this category.

cabinet.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Figure 11: Commercialisation Status of Biofuel Technologies for Transport Source: IEA. and the overall price of the resulting product is sensitive to feedstock prices. available at: http://www. Oils are typically derived from soybean. The Queensland Cabinet and Ministerial Directory website. starch and vegetable oil.qld. Bioethanol can also be produced from starch crops. accessed 31/08/2011. 162 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 77 . 2011 First Generation Biofuels The first generation ‘conventional’ biofuels are those manufactured from sugar. Queensland Government.au/MMS/StatementDisplaySingle. researchers in Queensland were preparing a bid to provide the US Navy with biofuels for ships and planes by 2020. 162 Sugar and starch based ethanol Bioethanol is produced by the fermentation of food crops such as sugarcane. which are transesterified using an alcohol.gov. as of July 2011. derived primarily from food crops. oil palm and sunflower. Conventional Biodiesel Conventional biodiesel is produced from raw vegetable oils and animal fats. sugar beet and sweet sorghum. but this requires an additional processing step: the hydrolosis of starch into glucose. The cost of bioethanol produced using these methods is closely related to the relevant feedstock prices.aspx?id=75429 . For example.

International Panel for Sustainable Resource Management. There are several processes currently under development for producing advanced biodiesel. and sewerage sludge. and nonedible plant material. Large scale HVO production plants exist in Finland and Singapore. Alkanes are basic hydrocarbons used for gasoline. electricity generation. 163 Bringezu S. or advanced biofuels are those manufactured from non-food crops and lignocellulose wastes (sustainable feedstocks).. diesel and jet fuel. and genetically engineered microbes are being developed to assist in this process. typically organic waste. but the process has not yet been fully commercialised. hydrogenated oils perform better at lower temperatures.163 Cellulosic ethanol Bioethanol can be produced from lignocellulosic feed stocks such as wood. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 78 . and these are outlined below: Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil Hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) is produced by hydrogenating vegetable oils or animal fats. and can be combined with fossil fuels in any proportion. and are not susceptible to microbial attack. Powerful cellulase enzymes are used in this process. So far none of these processes have been demonstrated on a commercial scale:  Conversion of sugar into alkanes using heterotrophic algae. and to power motor vehicles. This process requires biochemical conversion of the biomass feedstock into fermentable sugars. heating. yeast and cyanobacteria. Biomass-to-liquids A number of novel biofuel conversion routes have recently been announced in recent years (below). Compared to conventional biodiesel. et al (2009) Assessing Biofuels. animal manure. Advanced Biodiesel Advanced biodiesel has properties very similar to diesel and kerosene. which then follow the same process as conventional bioethanol. This technology has the potential to reduce land use competition. Biogas can be used for cooking. The manufacturing process requires enzymatic digestion and fermentation. Second Generation Biofuels Second generation.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Biogas Biogas can be produced by the anaerobic digestion of biodegradable material. have no storage stability problems. United National Environment Programme (UNEP). This is an area of significant technological development. as feedstock can be grown on marginal land. grasses.

This method of biofuel production has already received significant attention from the research community. and production is expected to expand considerably over the next decade. Demonstration plants exist in Germany and the US.  Hydrothermal processing: Biomass can be processed in a liquid media and subjected to high temperature and pressure.  Biobutanol: Sugars can be fermented using the acetone-butanol-ethanol process to yield biobutanol which can be used in internal combustion engines.  Dimethylether (DME): DME can be produced by catalytic dehydration of biomass or gasification of biomass feedstock. Natural gas vehicles can be run on biomethane derived from gasification of biomass or anaerobic digestion. Bio-synthetic gas Biomethane can be derived from solid biomass via thermal processes (partial combustion). and another plant is planned in Sweden. Algae can be grown on marginal land and in water that is otherwise unsuitable for crops and food production. There is currently a demonstration plant producing biomethane from solid biomass in Austria. through its capacity to consume carbon dioxide. also known as fast pyrolysis. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 79 . The oil is then processed in ways similar to crude oil. as few alternatives exist to replace these fuels.  The use of GM yeast to convert sugars into hydrocarbons and eventually synthetic diesel. algae offers the added benefit of mitigating greenhouse gas emissions. and DME has potential uses in diesel engines or as a substitute for propane in liquefied natural gas (LNG). Other fuels and additives A number of other biofuels and fuel-additives are currently in different stages of commercialisation. Furthermore. making bio-oils using algae less polluting and potentially more efficient than converting vegetable oils or animal fats into biofuel. The most promising algae biofuels are high quality diesel and jet fuel analogues. Third Generation Biofuels Biofuels produced from an algae feedstock are sometimes referred to as the third generation of biofuel technology.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Transformation of water-soluble sugars into hydrogen using aqueous phase reforming. and then into alkanes via a catalytic process. Production of DME from biomass gasification is in the demonstration stage. with others under construction. The result is a ‘bio crude’ product similar to pyrolosis oil.  Pyrolosis oil: The rapid heating (400-600ºC) and cooling of biomass. produces a liquid product suitable for long distance transport.

Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Currently the cultivation of algae and subsequent processing to extract oil is prohibitively expensive. Figure 12: Algae Biofuels Market: Technology Roadmap (world) 2010-2030 Source: Frost & Sullivan. and increased tolerance of algae to contamination by invasive natural strains. 2010 164 Frost & Sullivan (2011) White biotechnology © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 80 . Frost & Sullivan (2010) predict that algal biofuels will become commercialised on an industrial scale by the end of 2018. Technological developments expected in algal biofuel production in the next decade include the following: 164  Genetically modified organisms and improved algal strain selection: This will allow for increased lipid content of algae. and a number of small commercial scale projects. improved photosynthesis. Significant R&D challenges remain.  Improved delivery and use of nutrients and CO2. following the implementation of pilot projects and demonstrations. and large scale commercialisation of this technology depends on the ability to produce high volumes of low cost biofuels. and other aspects of scaling up production. Biotechnology improvements will need to go hand in hand with improvements in photobioreactor design.  Improved harvesting and drying technologies. Figure 12 below presents a roadmap for the commercialisation of biofuel technology. and rDNA technology has potential applications in the optimisation of algae strains.

which produce multiple fuels and products from petroleum. and will reduce competition among different sources of biomass. Biorefineries are the facilities and plants that are used to convert biomass resources into energy (biofuels/power/heat) and value-added products (chemicals/materials). and materials from biomass International Energy Agency (2011) Biofuels for Transport. such as flame retardant bioplastics and biodegradable plastics suitable for use in food packaging. Bioplastics Bioplastics are plastics derived from renewable biological materials rather than petrochemicals. 165 Conceptually. reduce production cost. Over the next decade we can expect an increase in the amount of very large scale bioprocessing. The production of high-value co-products (such as dried distillers’ grains with solubles and fructose) along with energy. Future biorefineries will play a major role in the replacement of some chemicals and materials traditionally produced from petroleum. Innovation and Skills. London. Key drivers for the development and implementation of biorefineries are the growth in demand for energy. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 81 . (2010) Technology Annex. Technology and Innovation Futures. and those which focus on producing food. Biorefineries will allow for a more efficient use of resources than current biofuel production units. and might create power or heat as a co-product. power. and chemicals. Emerging technological developments in bioplastics will improve product quality. Large biorefineries will be vital in achieving the economies of scale needed for the commercially viable production of biofuels. 167 Biocatalysts As a direct result of the revolution in genomics. an enormous number of previously unknown enzymes are becoming available for use in industrial processes. chemicals. as fewer steps are involved 165 IEA Bioenergy (2009) IEA Bioenergy task 42 on biorefineries: Co-production of fuels. and increasingly sophisticated biofuel refining technology. those which focus on creating energy (including biofuel plants). Department for Business. and the ongoing price increases of fossil resources.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Biorefineries Biorefining is defined as the sustainable processing of biomass into a spectrum of marketable products and energy. feed. chemicals and other materials. biorefineries are similar to conventional oil refineries. Enzyme-catalysed processes are generally more efficient than conventional chemical processes. 166 There are two main categories of biorefineries. Future technological development will produce bioplastics with novel properties and improved functionality. is an essential part of the biorefinery business model. fuels. and create a more viable substitute to traditional plastic materials. Technology Roadmap 166 167 Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre.

and their production requires only renewable feedstock. Agricultural Biotechnology The following section details emerging innovations in the application of biotechnology to agriculture. some are even edible. natural gas and petroleum are currently responsible for 67 per cent of global electricity production. requiring only renewable inputs. J. (2011) Biocatalysts for Green Chemistry and Chemical Process Development. Biohydrometallurgy is an interdisciplinary field involving processes that make use of microbes (usually bacteria and archaea) that take place in aqueous environments and deal with metal production and treatment.8. In biohydrometallurgy. Biotechnology and synthetic biology research is underway to harvest this methane through microbial digestion and other processes. Biocatalysts are highly selective.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 and input yields are higher. 6. biocatalysts are biodegradable.3. is a globally available source of natural gas. for example. eliminating waste in multistep reactions. Biotechnology already plays an important role in the agricultural 168 Tao. such as oil. Biocatalysts also usually use water as a solvent. In the near term. Technologies are segmented by their application in crop production. namely sugars and amino acids. and enabling safer and less hazardous chemical and product synthesis. Over the coming decade the discovery of novel biocatalysts will drive improvements in a variety of industrial processes. Broadly. the increasing range of bioenzymes available will enable safer and more efficient industrial processes. animal production. and oil sands with biology tools. A current area of focus for biotechnology and synthetic biology is leveraging large global reserves of hydrocarbons. Coal bed methane. shale. eliminating the production of organic solvent waste. Its reserves are vast and largely untapped. and can carry out difficult chemical reactions with fewer synthesis steps. biocatalysts are driving a trend towards more efficient and environmentally friendly manufacturing processes. Leveraging Fossil Fuels Coal. Biocatalysts are typically manufactured using transgenic organisms that secrete the catalyst. gas. 168 In addition to this. microbes are used as geological agents by mining and water treatment industries in order to find new approaches and technologies to:  Process ores and concentrates  Remediate waste waters  Recover and recycle metals. John Wiley & Sons © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 82 . and aquaculture. et al.

C. 169 Crop Biotechnology The use of transgenic or GM crops in agriculture has already developed far beyond the lab bench. decreasing water availability. and Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre. (2011) Plant Genetics. 172 Crop biotechnology has the potential to enable the adaption of existing food crops to rising temperatures. and Global Food Security. and outlines a commercial development pipeline of transgenic crops until 2020. increases in the understanding of fundamental plant biology and the application of GM technology will facilitate the development of a new generation of transgenic crops. 170 There is however a significant number of novel genetically engineered crops currently under development. and by 2009 there were almost 134 million hectares of genetically engineered crops being cultivated in 25 countries (Figure 13). Innovation and Skills. 1996 to 2009 (million hectares) Source: ISAAA. and improve food security and safety. Ronald.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 and food industry. London. 170 169 James. Journal of Agricultural Science 171 172 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 83 . rising salinity. 2009 A recent review by Dunwell (2010) describes important areas of crop biotechnology that are likely to be exploited over the medium term. (2010) Technology Annex. P. Genetics Dunwell. Department for Business. Sustainable Agriculture. (2010) Crop biotechnology: prospects and opportunities. J. Commercialisation of crop biotechnology began in 1996. 171 Figure 13: Global area of biotechnology crops.. (2009) Global Status of Commercialised Biotech/GM Crops. and promises to enable better and more efficient use of raw materials and byproducts. The International Service for the Acquisition of Agribiotech Applications (ISAAA). Over the next 10 years. Technology and Innovation Futures.

with far reaching socio-economic implications. Development of transgenic crops in this area is set to continue. Over the next decade we can expect a significant diversification of the number of crop traits available. et al. (2009) Transcriptome analysis of nitrogen-efficient rice over-expressing alanine aminotransferase. with the longer term possibility of enabling bacteria mediated acquisition of atmospheric nitrogen in non-legumes. P. 173 Beatty. and the prevalence of environmental pollution by reactive nitrogen. The following are some of the emerging applications of crop biotechnology identified by Dunwell (2010). The most advanced drought-tolerant crop under development is drought-tolerant maize. GM crops with improved water-use efficiency have the potential to greatly improve global agricultural yields. Water Use Efficiency The limited availability of water is the single most important factor that reduces crop yields. GM wheat and GM barley lines are being tested with a variety of genes enhancing tolerance to abiotic stress. crop biotechnology has focused on creating herbicide tolerant and insect resistant transgenic plants. leading to a strong nitrogen use efficiency phenotype. Researchers have already produced a GM rice variety that overexpresses alanine aminotransferase under a tissue specific promoter. GM technology will also have important applications in the production of feedstock for the biofuel industry. Plant Biotechnology Journal © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 84 . There are a number of transgenic crops currently in development that express genes affecting nitrogen uptake and transport. as atmospheric nitrogen acquisition is a complex process involving a number of different metabolic pathways. developments in this area will likely occur only in the far term. Up to this point. Currently in Australia. the improved management of nitrogen in agricultural production is of vital importance. and in Sub-Saharan Africa in 2017. Nitrogen Utilisation Due to the increasing costs of nitrogen fertilisers. 173 The focus of ongoing research is to identify genes that play a role in the nitrogen-use-efficient phenotype.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 changing pathogen and insect threats.. expected to be released in the US in 2012. However.

and is a major obstacle for sustainable food production worldwide. et al. and was demonstrated in a laboratory setting in 2009. which had a longer shelf life. RNAi also has potential applications in the targeted reduction of natural toxins and allergens in food plants. but is yet to be commercialised. Aluminium toxicity is primary among the factors that reduce plant growth on acid soils. An example of a recent development is a transgenic soybean crop developed by DuPont that was approved for commercial use by the US Department of Agriculture in 2010. RNAi technology could be used to silence toxin and allergen producing genes for targeted plant varieties.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Acidic Soils Soil acidity is the most serious land degradation issue affecting agriculture in Australia. The manipulation of these biological processes has so far been demonstrated in a laboratory setting. Biotechnology may also be able to increase the natural defences of plants against pests and insects. Innovation and Skills. 175 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 85 . Technology and Innovation Futures. London. Over the next 10 years there are a number of technological developments expected in this area. The transgenic 174 Liu. Department for Business.. Future transgenic plants will express interfering RNA that is targeted specifically against insect pests. Many plants. Product Quality Traits Although the first genetically modified crop approved for sale in the US was the Flavr Savr tomato. Over the next 10 years crop product quality traits will become increasingly important. 175 RNAi technology has significant potential to confer virus resistance. 174 Improving Tolerance/Resistance to Pests and Diseases Pest and disease resistance has been a major focus of crop biotechnology so far. Plant Journal Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre. (2009) Aluminium-activated citrate and malate transporters from the MATE and ALMT families function independently to confer Arabidopsis aluminium tolerance. (2010) Technology Annex. when attacked by herbivorous insects. A number of virus-resistant transgenic crops have already been developed. One transgenic approach is the secretion of organic acids by plant roots that are able to detoxify aluminium ions. J. The first generation of transgenic crops includes plants that secrete insecticidal proteins found in Bacillus thuringiensis (or Bt). emit volatile compounds that attract natural enemies of those insects. and Aluminium is generally harmless in pH neutral soils. product quality traits have received little attention until recently. including virus resistant squash and papaya currently being cultivated in the US.

Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 soybeans have modified oil quality.. P. J. International Journal of Phytoremediation © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 86 . There is also potential for future crops to produce high value compounds for the pharmaceutical industry. Journal of Agricultural Science Maestri. granola bars and spreads. providing sustainable post-harvest management options. N. used for the treatment of Gaucher’s disease. and carrot cells producing the enzyme glucocerebrosidase. and genetic engineering is a powerful tool for enhancing the natural phytoremediation capabilities of plants. (2010) Crop biotechnology: prospects and opportunities. (2010) Golden Rice and ‘Golden’ crops for human nutrition. (2011) Transgenic Plants for Phytoremediation. 178 Current transgenic approaches include enhancing the tolerance of plants to contaminants. and Marmiroli. Syngenta has developed a GM maize variety with thermostable amylase enzyme that breaks down starch rapidly. This has so far been demonstrated in a research setting with the production of human pro-insulin in a safflower (Carthamus tinctorius) for the treatment of diabetes mellitus. E. New Biotechnology Dunwell. Further development of biofuel-optimised GM feedstock will help to reduce pressures associated with using food crops for biofuel production. Biofuel-Optimised Crops A number of companies are currently developing and marketing biofuel-optimised feedstock. Rice crops have been engineered to synthesize provitamin A carotenoids. but none have yet been successfully commercialised. completely removing trans-fats and incorporating omega-3 fatty acids for use in yogurt. For plants that produce seeds and fruit there is a risk that phytoremediation could introduce toxins into the food chain. Monsanto has developed a maize variety with higher starch content for ethanol production. Identification of genes and corresponding biological pathways involved in the production of micronutrients are enabling the development of GM crops with nutritional enhancements. Contaminated plant material could however be used to produce energy and biofuels. and the company is developing new switchgrass (Pancium virgatum) varieties with higher yield. 177 GM Phytoremediation Phytoremediation is the use of plants to decontaminate soil and water. A number of transgenic plants have been produced for phytoremediation with promising results. and enhancing the ability of plants to accumulate and volatilise contaminants. 176 This technology has the potential to address nutritional deficiencies in the developing world. 176 177 178 Beyer.

Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Other Areas for Future Plant Improvement Other areas for possible genetic improvement in plants in the mid to long term include:  Control of flowering  Improvements in photosynthetic efficiency  Analysis and exploitation of heterosis (hybrid vigour) Forecasting the Commercial Pipeline of GM crops Stein and Rodriguez-Cezero (2010) predict that by 2015 there could be over 120 different transgenic events in commercialised GM crops worldwide. maize. compared to the 30 GM events in commercially cultivated GM crops in 2008. (2010) International trade and the global pipeline of new GM crops. and canola) will continue to do so in 2015. 2010 Stein and Rodriguez-Cezero (2010) developed a commercial pipeline of GM crop traits. A. 179 Figure 14: Current numbers and estimates of future numbers of GM crops worldwide Notes: Base year for estimates is 2008 Source: Nature Biotechnology. The estimates of future GM crops available segmented by crop type are displayed in Figure 14. and Rodriguez-Cezero. cotton.. E. The current crops dominating the GM landscape (soybeans. Nature Biotechnology © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 87 . 179 Stein. and differentiated between six categories according to the crops' proximity to market.

© Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 88 . with only 18 quality innovations between 2009 and 2015. or e.  Advanced R&D: the GM events are not yet in the regulatory process but their developers plan their actual commercialisation and the events are at late stages of their development. the GM event that is finally to be used in the crops is not yet selected.  Commercial GM crops: in at least one country worldwide the underlying GM events are authorised and the corresponding crops are currently marketed. out of a total of 91 new GM crops in the same period. It is expected that product quality traits will be developed slowly. segmented by trait category. The commercial pipeline is displayed in Table 11. but there are no concrete plans for their commercialisation yet.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Figure 15: The pipeline of GM crops from early R&D to commercialisation Earlier R&D Stages Advanced R&D Regulatory Pipeline Commercial Pipeline Commercial GM Crops “Other” GM Crops Source: AIC (Adapted from Nature Biotechnology).g.  Other GM crops: the GM events are authorised in at least one country worldwide but they were never commercialised – or they were commercialised once but then phased out afterwards.  Commercial pipeline: in at least one country worldwide the GM events are authorised but no crops are marketed yet. 2010 The categories of commercialisation are displayed in Figure 15 and are as follows:  Earlier R&D: initial research on a new GM crop is being carried out.  Regulatory pipeline: in at least one country worldwide the GM events are already submitted by their developers for authorisation for commercial use.

Biotechnology will also allow the agricultural industry to maximise the welfare of animals. 181 The technology to create transgenic animals has existed for over 30 years. and the use of sophisticated animal genetics and even transgenic technology will help to achieve the increases in productivity required. the current generation of agricultural researchers will develop a far better understanding of the genetics of animal production. available at”: http://www. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 89 . Biotechnologies used in animal production have already led to significant productivity improvements. 180 In addition to manipulation of the animals themselves. Through the use of enabling technologies such as genome sequencing and bioinformatics. 2010 21 11 2 5 0 0 2 5 1 0 0 0 11 4 5 2 1 2 25 13 12 3 6 11 59 33 20 10 7 13 Animal Production Biotechnology Demand for animal protein will continue to grow over the next 20 years. and animal health biotechnologies have improved disease diagnosis. recombinant bacteria have been developed to produce specific enzymes or hormones that improve nutrient utilisation in livestock. However. (2011) The future of animal production: improving productivity and sustainability.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Table 11: Numbers of current and possible numbers of expected GM traits worldwide TRAIT CATEGORY COMMERCIAL IN 2008 COMMERCIAL PIPELINE REGULATORY PIPELINE ADVANCED DEVELOPMENT TOTAL BY 2015 Insect resistance Herbicide tolerance Product quality Virus resistance Abiotic stress tolerance Other Source: Nature Biotechnology. maximise the efficiency of energy use in the generation of animal protein. D. Journal of Agricultural Science. Selection of animals based on molecular markers rather than phenotypic traits is discussed further under the heading “Marker Assisted Selection”. This is due to a 180 181 FAO website. and a far wider variety of traits than currently possible. rDNA technology does not play a significant role in agricultural livestock production.fao. A. Artificial insemination combined with cryopreservation facilitates widespread genetic improvement of livestock. Selection for animal breeding will in turn be based on genomewide selection. minimise loss due to disease and stress. et al.org/biotech/sectoral-overviews/biotech-livestock/en/ Hume. control and treatment. accessed 27/09/2011. and maximise the number of offspring produced per female.

MAS will be limited to genes of moderate to large effect. Current status and future prospectives in crops. 184 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 90 . a lack of public acceptance of the technology. livestock. and is particularly useful for traits that are hard to measure. to modification of milk properties and induction of disease resistance. In the agriculture and forestry sectors there has been significant investment in the construction of molecular marker maps for a wide range of species. forestry and fish. High throughput genotyping techniques using next generation DNA sequencing technology may lead to a wealth of information that can be exploited for genetic improvement of plants and animals. 184 Transgenic fish have been 182 183 UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (2007) Marker Assisted Selection. and more targeted plant and animal selection. genetic and genomic enabling technologies have the potential to facilitate more targeted improvement programs in aquaculture across a wider range of species than previously possible. but considerably more work is still required to realise the full potential of this technology. and/or are expressed late in development. and Napier. MAS has not yet delivered the expected benefits in commercial breeding programs for crops. Journal of Agricultural Science. McAndrew. and phenotype will continue to play an important role in plant and animal selection. livestock. and will remain subject to significant regulatory barriers.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 lack of public research funding in the area. J. Research examples also exist of transgenic livestock that offer human health and environmental benefits. (2010) Application of genetics and genomics to aquaculture development: current and future directions. and a lack of clear benefits to the consumer. faster. forest trees or farmed fish. B. Aquaculture Biotechnology Similar to the use of biotechnology in livestock production. exhibit low heritability. 183 The potential applications of MAS are numerous.. However. Marker Assisted Selection Marker assisted selection (MAS) combines recent technological advances in genetics and genomics with phenotypic-pedigree-based plant and animal breeding practices. This enables a selection process based on genotype (rather than phenotype). an indirect process is used where selection is based on molecular markers linked to traits of interests. Advances in molecular genetic technology will also enable cheaper. Rather than selecting animals and plants for phenotypic traits. Until the nature of complex genetic traits is better understood. The use of rDNA technology in animal production agriculture will become more viable over the far term. 182 The focus of research into transgenic livestock has shifted from the initial goal of modifying animal growth properties.

(2010) Technology Annex. Techniques in biotechnology such as third generation DNA sequencing technology discussed in Section 6.4 may incorporate nanopores through which individual DNA molecules pass. Market segments can be broadly classified as medical. nanoparticles. increased compliance. infectious disease and lipid disorders. including drugs for the treatment of cancer. Applications for nanobiotechnology are numerous and include drug delivery. including better efficacy. as nanotechnology is often applied to living organisms. a higher level of safety. Technology and Innovation Futures. nanocrystals. but due to a range of practical constraints transgenic fish are unlikely to become a commercial reality in the near term. quantum dots.10 can also be classified as nanobiotechology. and biotechnology often requires manipulation on a nanoscale. biological imaging and diagnostics. Genomic studies are currently underway to identify genes for improved growth and disease resistance. London. Department for Business.8. Many nanotechnologies identified in Sections 5. with polymer structures holding the leading market share with a value of USD $11 billion in 2010. thus providing many benefits to the patient.8 to 5. highlighting different types of nanomaterials used to meet the specific customer needs in that market segment. 186 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 91 . including many aspects of nanomedicine. Nanotechnologies enable better drug solubility. Drug delivery is a commercially important application for nanomaterials. These materials comprised the majority of the nanobiotechnology market value in 2010. Table 12 provides an overview of the nanobiotechnology industry. diagnostic and tools. Biotechnology and Nanotechnology Convergence The convergence of nanotechnology and biotechnology has resulted in the development of a number of products and technologies loosely defined as ‘nanobiotechnology’. there is a large commercial market for nano-delivered drugs. Similarly nanoscale structures can be produced through the self-assembly of biological molecules like DNA. As a result. liposomes. Medicine is a particularly important area for this convergence. 186 Nanobiotechnology convergence is quite common. 185 Foresight Horizon Scanning Centre. BCC Research (2011) Nanobiotechnology: Applications and Global Markets. microbicide and research tools. targeted delivery and greater convenience.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 engineered to show a 5-30 fold increase in growth during the first year of age.4. Innovation and Skills. particularly in drug delivery. 185 6. Popular nanomaterials used in nanobiotechnology include polymer structures. sequencing. dendrimers and nanopores. of which medical applications are the most common.

lateral flow and genomics assays R&D TOOLS MICROBICIDE SEQUENCING Nanoparticles Albumin drugs Imaging assays Wound dressings Quantum Dots Liposomal vaccines. drugs Small animal diagnostics Imaging assays Imaging for second generation Liposomes Dendrimers Nanopores Nanocrystals Polymer Structures Transfection assays Cardiac diagnostics Transfection assays Biochips Condom gels Third generation Nanocrystal drugs Transfection assays Pegylated and micelle-based drugs Source: BCC Research. 2011 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 92 .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Table 12: Nanobiotechnology Industry NANOMATERIAL DRUG DELIVERY DIAGNOSTICS MRI.

OECD.. synthetic biology allows scientists and engineers to re-engineer existing biological systems. synthetic biology also provides a new way of studying living systems to find out how they work and therefore increasing the base level 187 188 189 190 Parens.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 7. and for developing ‘off the shelf’ components to bring an end to lengthy biotechnology projects. It combines elements of biology. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars. etal. 187 In the same manner that chemistry transitioned from studying natural chemicals to designing and building new chemicals. E. Through the creation of biological systems that do not occur naturally. etal. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology. . genetics. We will then devise new control elements and add these new modules to the existing genomes or build up wholly new genomes. writing: 188 “Up to now we are working on the descriptive phase of molecular biology. and structures in novel and potentially useful ways through the modification of biological systems and the design and construction of biological systems not specifically found in nature. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 93 .0 SYNTHETIC BIOLOGY Synthetic biology is a form of advanced biotechnology. Parens. This would be a field with the unlimited expansion potential and hardly any limitations…” Synthetic biology uses biochemical processes. More ambitious goals include creating entirely new biological systems from non-living materials. But the real challenge will start when we enter the synthetic biology phase of research in our field. A feature of synthetic biology which distinguishes it from conventional genetic engineering is its focus on developing foundational techniques and technologies that make the engineering of biology easier and more reliable in the future. E. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars.. The first recognised use of the term synthetic biology occurred in 1974 by the Polish geneticist Waclaw Szybalski.. and computer science. 189 With new tools and concepts. European Academies Science Advisory Council (2011) Synthetic Biology: An Introduction.. The Royal Society (2010) Symposium on Opportunities and Challenges in the Emerging Field of Synthetic Biology. 190 Complementary to the creation of new biological systems.. chemistry. engineering. synthetic biology has the potential to refine and extend metabolic and genetic engineering. synthetic biology can be viewed as an extension and application of biotechnology. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology. molecules..

and other biological materials as parts or tools to be reconfigured. In 2009. transform medical care and human health. and is forecast to reach USD $4.  Biomolecular engineering includes approaches which aim to create a toolkit of functional units that can be introduced to present new orthogonal functions in living cells.  Biomolecular-design refers to the general idea of the de novo design and combination of biomolecular components. Synthetic Biology Global Market Overview The global market for synthetic biology was valued at USD $0. synthetic biology can be subdivided into broad classifications according to the approach they take to the problem at hand: 191  Photocell design includes projects to make self-replicating systems from entirely synthetic components. the potential threats to biodiversity and natural species. At a technical level. etal. genes. Another argument is that creating products through synthetic systems may be safer than merely trying to manipulate naturally occurring systems to produce them..1. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars. General Concepts of Synthetic Biology The two generally recognised approaches to synthetic biology are “Bottom-up” and “Top-down”. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 94 . and threatening longstanding concepts of nature. Conversely. 7.4 per cent over the period 20062015.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 of scientific knowledge across a large number of fields. Bottom-up seeks to create novel biochemical systems and organisms from scratch..  Genome engineering includes approaches to construct synthetic chromosomes for whole or minimal organisms (the minimum amount of components to maintain functionality). Synthetic biology has the potential to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels. E. Top-down uses existing organisms. enzymes.5 billion by 2015. assist with issues associated with climate change and the environment and improve food security. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology. By making systems that are far simpler than those found in nature. registering a CAGR of 53.6 billion in 2010. synthetic systems allow researchers to perform experiments that would otherwise be difficult to carry out and perhaps impossible to interpret. the largest and fastest growing end-user segment of synthetic biology was 191 Parens. critics cite concerns about “playing God” and disrespecting the meaning of life.

accounting for close to 39 per cent of global sales. Table 13: Market Analysis for Synthetic Biology by End-Use Sector (Annual Sales Figures in USD $ Million) END-USE SECTOR Energy & Chemicals Biotechnology & Pharmaceuticals Research & Development TOTAL 2006 21.90 2009 149.32 2007 47.85 245.13 550.34 4521. from 2006 through to 2015.90 129.41 3243.17 1250.50 283.48 2038.72 400. and assuming sales figures of close to USD $150 million.67 2008 85.42 107.25 52.83 2074. 2010 Figure 16: Market Analysis for Synthetic Biology by End-Use Sector (Annual Sales Figures in USD $ Million) Source: Global Industry Analysts.22 1383.24 151. biotechnology and pharmaceuticals.68 37. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 95 .23 925.70 314.12 194.72 28.15 726. Synthetic Biology.08 3079.37 752.45 273.41 917.67 42.18 52.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 energy and chemicals. Table 13 and Figure 16 highlight the global sales for each of three different end user segments: energy and 192 chemicals.87 Source: Global Industry Analysts.38 53.44 2012 2013 2014 2015 % CAGR 74. 2010 192 Global Industry Analysts (2010).58 76.35 144.47 83.74 352.96 2010 260.28 187.21 96.64 386.28 2011 446.53 231.81 599.43 37. and R&D.

Synthetic biology is differentiated from previous work in molecular biology through its emphasis on standardised parts. Synthetic Biology and the Next Assault on Biodiversity and Livelihood. biotechnology. nanotechnology and the fundamental disciplines of engineering. At a research and technology development level. in an attempt to develop genetic information as a commodity. as knowledge from the synthetic biology industry develops. Parens. Therefore.  Pharmaceutical. et al. The hope of addressing shortcomings in these existing methods is also driving advancements in synthetic biology. whilst addressing the various concerns listed above. measure and exploit the biological world.. it is estimated that 20 per cent of the global chemical industry (currently worth USD $1. learnings will increasingly be applied to companion fields like nanotechnology and biomedical imaging. 194 In order to ensure synthetic biology reaches its full potential. packaging and ingredients to make ‘green’ marketing claims. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 96 . Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars.8 trillion) could be dependent on synthetic biology in one form or another by 2015. chemical and energy companies are partnering with the new bioentrepreneurs to improve their production processes and feedstock sourcing. information technology and chemistry.  Consumer products and food companies are turning to bio-based products. (2010) The New Biomasters. Drivers Estimates have placed the annual synthetic biology research market at USD $600 million.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 7.5 billion over the next decade. synthetic biology is driven by previous work and advancements in genetic engineering. However. which in turn is increasingly converging with nano and information technologies.2. nanotechnology and software) are providing new tools to transform.. computers and automation. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology. synthetic biology is currently being driven by limitations in these existing fields of work. investments would need to focus on not only foundation technologies 193 194 ETC Group. with the potential to exceed USD $4. As an example of its growing importance. trading markets and land investments. The market is driven by the following industrial sectors: 193  High tech companies (biotechnology. The relationship of these disciplines to synthetic biology is discussed in detail below.  Financial services companies and investment banks are drawing up new ecosystem securities. Complicating the definition of synthetic biology is that it is often considered a natural extension of genetic engineering. E.

from developments in synthetic biology are immense. In the same way that current rDNA technology allows the manipulation of organisms to produce novel compounds. Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues. pollution control and remediation. (2009) Genome Engineering. Scientists hope that synthetic biology will allow for biological hypotheses to be tested more rigorously. 197 Carr. and biosensors. A. such as the synthesis of human insulin in bacterial cells.7.1. By engineering or reengineering living organisms. As the capacity of researchers to synthesise.3. The Ethics of Synthetic Biology and Emerging Technologies. P. For example. de novo genome engineering moves closer to a practical reality. Nature Biotechnology © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 97 . agriculture and food. particularly a need for more tools and platforms at all stages. genome engineering is the use of currently available genetic engineering technology on a genomic scale.3.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 and science. Genome Engineering Genome engineering is defined as the extensive and intentional genetic modification of a replicating system for a specific purpose. genome 195 196 European Academies Science Advisory Council (2011) Synthetic Biology: An Introduction. (2010) New Directions. 196 The creation of new products could include breakthroughs in clean energy and biofuels. 195 7. as evidenced by the scale and scope of applications discussed in Section 7. manipulate and analyse DNA constructs increases at an exponential scale. synthetic biologists will be able to understand how the biological world works in areas where earlier analytical approaches fell short. but also education and policy to ensure a safe and efficient development of the synthetic biology industry. Effectively. Advancing Scientific Knowledge and Understanding As well as the technical opportunities. Opportunities The opportunities associated directly.. Potential benefits can be divided into two broad categories: advancing basic scientific knowledge and creating new products. medicine and health. and Church G. cells. synthetic biology is being used to better answer basic questions about the natural world and to explain complex biological processes about how DNA. and as a flow on effect. synthetic biology can contribute to advancing general scientific knowledge and understanding. 7. Gutmann. organisms and biological systems function. Developments in these fields have the potential to change our lives and our shared environment. 197 Significant challenges remain to be overcome to realise the potential of this technology.

This is an important area of research as it is hoped that it can reveal which genes are essential to life and those that are not. but also to build novel organisms from scratch. Although applications of genome engineering are promising.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 engineering will allow unprecedented levels of genetic customisation. Regulatory Circuits The natural activity of cells is controlled by circuits of genes similar to electronic circuits. and other compounds. since this is still an emerging area of research.4. This is being done by synthetic biologists by progressively eliminating genes in bacteria and assessing the effects. Minimal Genomes Synthetic biology is being used to define the minimum number of genetic instructions (genes) needed for an organism to survive. they need to create novel internal circuitry to alter the pattern of cells activity. The main barriers to advancement in the area of synthetic biology are logistical barriers. Using this knowledge it may be possible to design and build cell factories. This will allow bioengineers to simplify their synthetic-bio systems and potentially reduce development time of such products. such networks could be used to control those systems. a stripped down organism capable of more stable and efficient production of medicines. 7. and lie in horizon 2 and 3. in order for synthetic biologists to alter the behaviour of cells. many of these barriers are rapidly being overcome as progress and breakthroughs accelerate. Barriers Various barriers and challenges exist for the synthetic biology sector. A possible application is using an artificial network to sense and correct metabolic disturbances such as those found in diabetes. the output of which will depend on what additional genes are added to the minimal set required simply to sustain the organism’s existence. Linked together and implanted into natural systems. However. A full knowledge of which genes are essential to do what also helps the bioengineer to create new and specialised organisms by eliminating unwanted genes. This research is building the knowledge of genetic components required to develop molecular switches and thus build artificial gene networks. they remain largely unproven. biofuels. such as a lack of tools and platforms. Other potential applications include the harnessing of microbes as biosensors to identify threats. and for use in bioremediation. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 98 . and the ethical issues associated with manipulation of the biological world. Researchers are currently working to develop a ‘cellular chassis’. Therefore.

It is extremely difficult to anticipate with confidence how a synthetic organism will react to and interact with the natural environment.. (2010) New Directions.. testing and redesign. et al. 199 Building a single cell from parts in the laboratory is a vastly different challenge than building an organism that interacts effectively and predictably in nature.. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 99 . Much is still unknown regarding the interactions between and within cells (natural or synthetic) as well as their interactions with the environments. The Ethics of Synthetic Biology and Emerging Technologies. synthetic biology requires more rapid and reliable de novo DNA synthesis and assembly of fragments of DNA. especially for biofuels. 200 198 199 European Academies Science Advisory Council (2011) Synthetic Biology: An Introduction. Underestimated Complexity Naturally occurring biological systems are more complex and difficult to manipulate than anyone imagined 10 or 20 years ago. Current research is proving that the design of synthetic and artificial organisms to survive in nature is a far greater challenge than previously anticipated. synthetic biology works on a very small scale. Another critical limitation in synthetic biology is the time and effort expended during fabrication of engineered genetic sequences. 200 Parens. Gutmann. Researches are currently trying to address the fact that in most cases. A. Also unknown is how synthetic biological systems evolve. engineered biological systems quickly revert to “wild type” by evolving to lose their engineered function rather than gain a new one. As discussed above. How any specific DNA sequence functions in a cell is also dependent on secondary modifications in its structure or folding pattern that can promote or inhibit the transcription of genes. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Scalability from Laboratory Trials The major issue facing synthetic biology today is the scalability of synthetic biology tools being developed. To speed up the cycle of design. Nature has proven that DNA can only function if it exists within an environment that provides the cellular components. 198 This issue and others mean that the promise of synthetic biology will continue to be questioned since many of the more complex technologies may be a decade or more away. Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues. Currently. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology. but in order to be commercialised large amounts of product will need to be produced. E. fabrication. complexity and variation reflect the fact that DNA alone is not sufficient to create the biological functions necessary for the creation of products from synthetic biology. This is commonly referred to as gene synthesis.

it is important to develop computer-aided design tools which support the design and programming of devices and their implementation into systems. Bridging this gap is an important step for ensuring the growth of the field.  Applications are generally narrowly directed to the end product and not towards developing a technology base to broadly support many different products. but still represents a significant challenge.  To address scalability.  Going from the conceptual design of a function using synthetic biology to a genetic sequence that fully implements the function represents a significant technical challenge. The challenge lies in creating these libraries and getting them to a critical mass of information.  From a technology development point of view. large libraries of refined parts need to be set up. the culture of biological research traditionally rewards novelty and does not equally celebrate engineering contributions. progress and the appropriate relationship of humans to themselves and the natural world. The major challenges include:  Invention and implementation of engineering design principles into biology is critical to effective tool development and thus for the field to move forward more applications. When discussing ethical issues associated with synthetic biology. These types of tools are either not currently developed or not accessible enough. disease biomarkers for those working on biomedical research. tools and techniques. Furthermore. it is important to recognise that different people and cultures adopt different ethical frameworks. Ethical Debates In addition to the ethical concerns about physical harm resulting from developments in synthetic biology. However. The concerns about nonphysical harm focuses on fairness. Enhancing the engineering part of synthetic biology is becoming increasingly important. and exogenous chemicals for those working on agricultural biotechnology. Investing in or integrating new tools and technologies is often not a priority when they do not directly lead to a specific product.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 A Gap between Tools and Applications A barrier for the synthetic biology field to achieve its full potential is the gap between applications. The library could include many different classes of molecules such as: metabolites for those working on biosynthesis. it is important to recognise the societal consequences that © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 100 . equality. ethical concerns also deal with the risk of nonphysical harm.

While the risk of physical harm often triggers debates about how to proceed among researchers. Other fields of science have shown that at that point. Following on from this debate is who should gain from these inventions. E. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology. In general. ethical concerns are too often addressed only after investments have been made and technologies are already commercialised. Some of these potential harms include unanticipated adverse human health effects. 202 7. the environment and biosecurity.. Danish Council of Ethics 2011 Synthetic Biology: a discussion paper Danish Council of Ethics May 2011 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 101 . negative environmental effects from field release and dual-use concerns when research undertaken for legitimate scientific purpose may be misused to pose a biologic threat to public health and/or national security. among the many concerns about the patenting and commercialisation of advances in synthetic biology is the contested view about who should control and have access to these inventions.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 may impact globally as a result of only a small number of societies developing synthetic biology. policymakers. 201 For instance. concerns exist as to humans overreaching when new organisms are created and the associated debate about what is our proper role in the natural world.7. Some commentators also cite possible negative economic impacts in developing countries where naturally occurring commodities may be devalued if synthetic production occurs elsewhere. several commentators have recommended the early adoption of a range of modes for anticipating and shaping the social and ethical implications of these technologies as they emerge. Learning from the developments in other emerging fields of science. risks surrounding synthetic biology can be divided into two broad categories: physical and nonphysical harms. neither the research community or policymakers have a strong incentive to address ethical issues for fear that any debate may stifle technological advance and innovation. Furthermore. others argue views about the appropriateness of owning patents on living organisms. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars. and the public. Conversely. the technology also raises concerns about risks to human health.5. et al. Risks Despite the potential benefits of synthetic biology discussed above and in Section 7. the risk of nonphysical harm 201 202 Parens. For this reason..

A full assessment of these promising activities requires specific attention to the current limitations. E. which generally have well-defined and predictable qualities. Nonphysical concerns range from equitable distribution of benefits to ethical arguments about humans’ place in the natural world.. Concerns centre on the possibility of an unmanaged release that could lead to undesired cross-breeding with other organisms. The following sections discuss some of the risks associated with various synthetic biology applications in renewable energy. et al. self-repair and reproduction. Flow-on effects from the development of better biomass. The most widely discussed concern for the development of synthetic biology technologies is the accidental contamination or intentional release of synthetic organisms. feedstock and biofuel production techniques is the potential harm to ecosystems from the required dedication of land and other natural resources to allow these developments to be commercialised. uncontrolled proliferation. researchers may uniquely tag the genetic code of new organisms that they develop. and threats to biodiversity. and anticipated risks. communities. environmental. health. biosecurity. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology. Furthermore. Since synthetic biology has the potential to produce products that are capable of self-assembly. Risks Associated with Renewable Energy Applications Synthetic biology offers many potential methods to improve energy production and reduce costs as is demonstrated in Section 7. Some of these issues are already 203 Parens.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 presents more difficult challenges. and dual use. With such large expectations put on these area of synthetic biology. preventing them from reproducing or surviving outside of a laboratory or other controlled setting. food. 203 For both physical and nonphysical reasons.7. because renewable energy applications may be the first synthetic biology products to come to market. Countering these risks is that many of the tools being developed through synthetic biology include strategies to remediate such risks. they pose a much greater threat than synthetically produced chemicals. many in the synthetic biology community believe that it is important to develop governance systems to allow innovation in synthetic biology to reach its full potential. This tagging process may provide an additional and effective tracking system when trying to address such issues. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 102 . agriculture.. This has the potential to affect food production. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars. crowding out of existing species. challenges. there is also a potential risk that benefits will not live up to expectations. Examples include engineering “terminator” genes or “suicide” switches that can be inserted into organisms. and current ecosystems.

The use of cell therapies of bacterial or mixed microbial origin may cause infections or unexpected immune responses. interactions. and properties could affect ecosystems and other species in unknown and adverse ways. and the environment raise concerns broadly similar to those raised above with respect to safety. As with energy applications.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 being realised through the increasing demand on ethanol and the increased amounts of feedstock required for biofuel production. resource management. Novel organisms developed with synthetic biology to treat illness may trigger unanticipated adverse effects in patients. This trend is driving developments in synthetic biology which are aiming to address these issues. food. This includes “Biological isolation. these risks include harms to humans. or animals from:  Uncontrolled environmental escape or release and attendant disruption to ecosystems. In brief. as such novel entities may have neither an evolutionary or ecological history.  New or sturdier pests (animal or plant) that may be difficult to control. With respect to environmental applications and bioremediation. Although many issues (such © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 103 . plants. New organisms developed with synthetic biology may pose risks resulting from their potential as biological organisms to reproduce or evolve. Human health risks may arise from adverse effects of intentional or inadvertent release of the organisms engineered using synthetic biology. Food. Countering these concerns is the observation that synthetic cells and systems show a tendency to evolve toward non-functionality. Synthetic biology’s critics worry that creating new organisms that have uncertain or unpredictable functions. Risks Associated with Agricultural. expectations were placed on genetic engineering for bioremediation purposes in the mid-1980s. and Environmental Applications Synthetic biology applications in the context of agriculture. researchers in synthetic biology are looking to counter these threats in the process of developing these new products. The associated risks of escape and contamination may be extremely difficult to assess in advance. and biodiversity. and  Increased pesticide resistance and growth of invasive species.” which is also termed “biosafety engineering” that aims to build in molecular “brakes” or “seatbelts” that restrain growth or replication of partially or fully synthetic organisms. Risks Associated with Medical Applications Biomedical applications of synthetic biology raise potential risks for humans and the environment similar to those identified for renewable energy applications.

the role of synthetic biology in expanding general scientific knowledge will allow scientists to address risks with an enhanced level of understanding.fao. and facilitate trade. It may be difficult to assess the risks of synthetic organisms since there may be no natural equivalent from which to draw comparisons or expected behaviour and evolution.205 In this field.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 as robustness and scalability) arise when putting modified bacteria in a contaminated environment. bacteria currently being developed in laboratories are not scalable or robust enough to survive in the natural environment. there is a clear consensus among scientists and policymakers that biosecurity risks are serious and warrant ongoing and proactive reexamination as technical capacity evolves. considerable time is being spent on evaluating the biosecurity risks of synthetic biology products and practices. a novel microbe would have to be released freely into a particular environment or situation.asp 206 ETC Group. animal and plant life and health. available at: http://www. To perform its task. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Scientists contemplating any such action would have to set an exceptionally high threshold of certainty or risk mitigation strategies to control such tests.org/ag/agn/agns/foodcontrol_biosecurity_en. a synthetically produced organism may need to be proven in a commercial capacity. Easy access to DNA sequences will see the techniques of molecular biology being adopted by those that have little experience with 204 205 European Academies Science Advisory Council (2011) Synthetic Biology: An Introduction. animal and plant life and health. 204 Biosecurity and Biosafety The term “biosecurity” refers to a strategic and integrated approach to analyse and manage risks in food safety. It provides a policy and regulatory framework to improve coordination and take advantage of the synergies that exist across sectors. However risks become uncertain when considering synthetic organisms as selfsustaining and able to evolve. In this respect. A potential risk to biosecurity is that synthetic biology products and techniques may become increasingly accessible to other industries. helping to enhance protection of human. (2010) The New Biomasters. and biosafety.206 A further complication is that the release of a synthetic organism would not necessarily be accidental. At some point in their development. associated risks may be easier to assess. For those based on natural pathogens or with pathogenic mechanisms. Consequently. Synthetic Biology and the Next Assault on Biodiversity and Livelihood © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 104 .

Addressing Biosecurity Concerns Related to Synthetic Biology © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 105 . Mere knowledge of a viral genome is far from sufficient to be able to re-constitute or create a disease forming pathogen.  Oversight of dual use research should extend beyond the boundaries of life sciences and academia. biosecurity and biosafety regulations and process will be of utmost importance moving forward and also ensuring that regulations and processes are continually updated to remain current with industry and research practises.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 biological agents. One of the most widely voiced risks attributed to synthetic biology is that it may be used to intentionally create harmful organisms for bioterrorism. Frequently lost in these discussions is recognition that DNA alone is not sufficient to create an independently functioning biological entity. It will be important to ensure that all newcomers to the bioscience community understand the risks involved. For these reasons.org/ National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (2010). 207 208 Information available at: http://www. Dual Use Concerns about dual use or intentional misuse of synthetic biology to do harm are among the most prominent critiques of this emerging technology. Addressing Risks Associated with Biosecurity and Biosafety Principles to be taken into account for a code of conduct to minimise misuse include:  An awareness of the potential consequences of research and a refusal to undertake work that can have only harmful consequences  An adherence to good laboratory working practices  Knowledge of and support for national and international laws and policies to prevent the misuse of research  An acceptance of the duty to report any activity that violates codes such as the Biological and Toxins Weapons Convention 207 . one must have an appropriate host and conditions for a virus to grow. The National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (NSABB) in the US made three recommendations to ensure biosecurity in the field of synthetic biology: 208  Synthetic biology should be subject to institutional review and oversight since some aspects of this field pose biosecurity risks.opbw. issues that leading scientists have not even solved (it is not yet possible to craft functioning biological organisms from synthesised genomic material alone). Rather.

it must be remembered that research into synthetic biology is still only a decade old. representing an arena in which scientific knowledge will be progressively embedded in many.6. 7.S Department of Agriculture.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Outreach and education strategies should be developed that address dual use research issues and engage the research communities that are most likely to undertake work under the umbrella of synthetic biology. was opened in 2003. Currently. 209 To explain the potential of synthetic biology. the true potential of synthetic biology is difficult to grasp (particularly for members of the public) as its benefits are wide ranging and a quantum leap from current technologies and processes. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 106 . synthetic biology has already made several considerable breakthroughs and therefore is an area of enormous strategic and economic significance. medicine and health. This will drive and accelerate the development of products and opportunities addressed in this report and even opportunities that have not yet been identified. renewable energy. Figure 17 also shows that synthetic biology has advanced to such a point where the potential to advance rDNA technology is expected to progress rapidly through the use of synthetic biology. if not all technological solutions in the future. agriculture and food. (2011) Synthetic Biology A Trip Around the Neighbourhood. The US Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The diversity of potential solutions for biofuels. Disruptive Potential Whilst still a young field of research. When assessing the disruptive potential of synthetic biology. D. Comparing synthetic biology directly to biotechnology. U. and generally advancing scientific knowledge (particularly nanotechnology) shows the potential of this emerging field of technology. The first department of synthetic biology at a major research institution. 209 Rejeski.. the environment. Figure 17 from the US Department of Agriculture shows the current stage of development for synthetic biology compared with existing technologies.

Synthetic biology promises to expand the commercial possibilities for biomass from the current. paper products and building supplies industries. some applications are expected to come to market within a few years (horizon 2). As the required skills and technical tools are developed. textiles. Industrial sectors that are beginning to switch carbon feedstock to biomass include energy and chemical. Success in these research efforts will attract investment and yield new jobs as novel products are developed. Disruptive Potential Source: U.S Department of Agriculture. food.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Figure 17: Synthetic Biology. January 2011 7.1. plastics. whilst most of the outputs of synthetic biology remain in early stages of development (horizon 3). That said.7. the acceleration of breakthroughs in synthetic biology is likely to dramatically increase. Renewable Energy Applications Biomass and Biofuels The development of nanotechnology and synthetic biology means that biomass can now be targeted by industry as a source of living ‘green’ carbon to supplement or partially replace fossil carbons of oil. Synthetic Biology Applications The field of synthetic biology is still young and our understanding of complexity and variation in natural and synthetic parts and systems is far from complete. relatively low-tech burning biomass for electricity production. to an ability to create custom © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 107 . pharmaceuticals.7. coal and gas. 7. The technical tools and skills required for large-scale production of products incorporating synthetic biology components still need to be developed.

(2011) Synthetic Biology A Trip Around the Neighbourhood. thus avoiding competition with crops grown for food. or feedstock that is more efficient. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 108 . coli to improve this bacterial biochemical reaction to make butanol more industrially useful. reliable. (2007)Synthetic Biology.S Department of Agriculture. plastics. Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (2008) Synthetic Biology. current synthetic biology is investigating an easy way to manipulate bacterium E. algae. Synthetic biology may also offer new biomass sources. D. 212 Bioalcohols Further to biotechnology based studies into bioalcohols such as butanol. Several companies are researching industrial applications to produce biofuels using bioengineered organisms.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 organisms to act as ‘living factories’ into horizons 2 and 3. 210 Biofuels Many in the synthetic biology community predict that biofuel products will be the first synthetic biology products to market. They speculate that these fuels could be on the market within five years. oilseeds. 211 The potential of synthetic biology to advance the biofuels industry is closely linked with advancements in biotechnology. U. Rejeski. and potentially sewage. grasses. One such approach is to create “super-fermenting” yeast and bacteria through synthetic biology. 210 211 212 A NEST Pathfinder Initiative. These include forest and agriculture residues. pharmaceuticals and other high value compounds. synthetic biology may accelerate the development of “second generation” biofuels that can be prepared from agricultural waste and plant residues.. Synthetic biology offers the opportunity to greatly increase efficiency and yields of the production of some biofuels. Synthetic biologists aim to improve the speed and efficiency of converting biomass into advanced. Another major focus has been to examine the potential for using synthetic or modified organisms to generate ethanol from plant matter. These synthetic biology processes are expected to be available commercially within the next few years. second or third generation biofuels with cleaner and more favourable energy-usage profiles. It has been suggested that synthetically manufactured microorganisms in fermentation vats will one day be capable of transforming biomass into a wide range of custom chemicals. fuels. Following initial breakthroughs in the industry. low cost and scalable than current sources.

Hydrogen is currently produced by converting it from natural gas using steam. Several possible routes to generate bio-hydrogen are using engineered E. and reliant on fossil fuels. However. advanced mechanisms for personalised medicine. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 109 . Natural gas techniques are costly. This is particularly attractive. Finally. Potential improvements in the medical discipline include improved production of drugs and vaccines. and perhaps most promisingly. programmable drugs and devices for prevention and healing. This would mitigate the problem of storage. Medical and Pharmaceutical Applications Synthetic biology has the opportunity to advance human health in a variety of ways. inefficient. as it may enable sugar to be converted into hydrogen fuel inside a vehicle itself. as hydrogen takes up large amounts of space at regular atmospheric pressure and compression of the gas requires energy and makes storage difficult and dangerous. Synthetic biology builds on the history of genetic engineering technology. to engineer bacteria with the ability to produce commercially relevant molecules like insulin and vaccines for hepatitis B virus and human papillomavirus. and novel. Hydrogen also has the second highest energy density per unit of weight of any known fuel. This timesaving step may support large-scale industrial operations where quick turnaround times are required. From a synthetic biology perspective. researchers are investigating ways to produce high yields of hydrogen using starch and water via a synthetic enzymatic pathway. used for more than three decades in medicine. Hydrogen Fuel Hydrogen fuel is an area of focus for commercial applications of synthetic biology as a clean. Hydrogen is highly desirable as a fuel source because it is clean-burning and only produces water as a by-product. research remains in the early development phase. investigations are currently focusing on the engineering of algal cells to secrete oil continuously through their cell walls and thereby increase yield. efficient process for extracting hydrogen from water. coli as a host organism to produce hydrogen in addition to other biofuels and using engineered algae as a feedstock. Synthetic processes for the production of bio-hydrogen is being explored and expected to cost significantly less while providing higher yields.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Photosynthetic Algae Breakthroughs in biotechnology are occurring in various forms of algae based products.

In the future. including rapid. To assist in this process. Pharmaceuticals Synthetic biologists have refined a chemical technique called metabolic engineering to enhance the production of medicines. synthetic biology techniques are being used to accelerate the development of vaccines. Synthetic biology can also be used to engineer molecules and cells that express proteins or pathways responsible for human disease. including its unique genetic code. We are unlikely to see commercial applications from much of the bio-medically oriented synthetic biology research for many years. Many current cancer treatments focus on non-selective cell killing or on delivery to specific tissues.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 While the benefits of synthetic biology to health care may prove monumental. DNA-based vaccines created “on-thespot” to match actual. against which the vaccine will be used. Synthetic biology studies are providing a growing body Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues (2010) New Directions. Scientists can redesign these pathways to produce novel products or augment the production of current pharmaceuticals. The Ethics of Synthetic Biology and Emerging Technologies 213 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 110 . or horizon 2-3. In this respect. approaches to disease prevention and health care. inexpensive DNA sequencing combined with computer modelling. may streamline production time by accelerating this initial step. these products may be used in large-scale screening methods to identify novel drugs for disease treatment or prevention. circulating viral genetic material may be a more efficient process for producing vaccine seed stock in the future. Synthetic biology tools. although the pace of discovery is unpredictable. 213 Personalised Medicine Synthetic biology offers useful strategies for advancing personalised medicine by applying the science of genomics to develop individually tailored. Most of the anticipated health benefits of synthetic biology remain in the preliminary research stage. This process involves altering an organism’s metabolic pathways (the series of chemical reactions that enable the organism to function at the cellular or organism level) to better understand and manage how they work. one industry group is developing a database of synthetically created seed viruses for influenza vaccines that it hopes will enable more rapid vaccine production by reducing virus identification time. and thereby more effective. Vaccines The first step in the development of a vaccine is the identification of the virus strain. significant hurdles remain.

while sparing healthy ones.2. cloning. however they are expected to be widely available into horizons 2 and 3. These and other novel approaches to tailored disease treatment may substantially improve outcomes and reduce the costs and burden of disease across the population. Synthetic biology work in this field is still in the early stages compared with other areas of research such as energy and 214 Parens. drugs. and other biotechnology tools have enhanced the manipulation of crops and breed animals for specific purposes and enhanced agricultural outcomes.. effectively enabling the treatment to be targeted more carefully and precisely toward the cells intended to be killed. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 111 . (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology.. Similarly. synthetic organisms could be developed to create a trigger to deliver or withhold treatment depending upon a local disease environment (such as low levels of oxygen). Biosensors Synthetic biology also has a part to play in developing novel and more efficient biosensors to be used in tackling complex diseases. Food Security Synthetic biology may help to mitigate threats to global food supply. Expanding on the use of biotechnology in this sector. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars. Custom protein and biological circuit design through synthetic biology practises may eventually enable the delivery of “smart proteins” or programmed cells that self-assemble at disease sites. 214 Biosensors are currently being developed and used in a limited capacity. This may facilitate the development of specifically designed detection devices matched to individual tumours.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 of knowledge supporting molecular classification of tumours. synthetic biologists are developing high-yield and disease-resistant plant feedstock that can be supplemented with efficient and environmentally friendly microorganisms to minimise water use and replace chemical fertilisers. DNA sequences. Biosensors could be used to collect quantitative dynamic data in minimally invasive ways and to a much greater sensitivity than current mechanical sensor technology.7. 7. A synthetic biology approach currently under study is a cancer treatment that focuses on up to six cellular identifiers rather than one. bacteria. Biosensors also have various other applications such as detecting viruses. toxins and warfare agents. hormones. E. Applications in the Food Industry Agriculture The use of rDNA technology. et al.

Glycyrrhizin Glycyrrhizin is the sweet compound found in liquorice root that is 150-300 times sweeter than table sugar and is widely used as a natural sweetener and in natural medicine. (2007)Synthetic Biology. but R&D in this field is well underway. they can be made to perform more efficiently as biofuel feedstock. By using synthetic DNA sequences to engineer plants. Particular areas of the food industry likely to profit from synthetic biology tools and techniques include: 215 Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues (2010). it should now be possible to use synthetic biology to induce a soy plant or a microbe such as yeast to produce glycyrrhizin allowing the production process to be moved away from the countries listed above. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 112 . 216 Food Processing Synthetic biology may also provide materials. which readily breaks down the corn’s stalks into cellulose to produce cellulosic biofuels. sensors and other technologies that can facilitate. Liquorice root is in high demand. substances. The Ethics of Synthetic Biology and Emerging Technologies 216 A NEST Pathfinder Initiative. New Directions. Researchers have identified and synthesised all the genes responsible for producing glycyrrhizin. Palm Oil The oil palm genome is currently being decoded by a Malaysian palm oil conglomerate in an attempt to replace it in foods such as mayonnaises and ice creams as well as soaps and lotions to aid in reducing harvesting plantations of oil palm. 215 Biofuel Feedstock Synthetic plants are also being investigated by synthetic biologists to create more economical feedstock. with supplies almost exclusively limited to wild indigenous species of the liquorice plant found in arid regions of China. enhance and reduce the cost of food production processes. other researchers are investigating the development of “oil profiles” of algae and devise replacements for different types of oil. Other similar projects include using synthetic biology to ‘reprogram’ commodity crops such as corn. Siberia. cotton and canola as more efficient biofuel feedstock. This approach to creating difficult to produce food stocks can be applied to many food products to improve global food security. Supporting this project. Examples of synthetic biology projects focused on food security are discussed below.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 health. An example is an engineered synthetic sequence that causes corn to produce an enzyme. Mongolia. According to researchers. and Japan.

direct and enhance biological capabilities to respond to existing and future pollution and waste issues. such as setting up catalytic reactions allowing the conversion of industry waste into CO2 or water  For bioremediation or degradation. 217 218 European Academies Science Advisory Council (2011) Synthetic Biology: An Introduction. Bioremediation is the use of biological systems to treat environmental contaminants. an area already largely based on genetic engineering  Flavours and fragrances  Food waste processing. (2010) The New Biomasters.3. 7. they are not expected to make an impact until into horizon 3. This demonstrated how these organisms could reduce some types of pollution. Environmental Applications Industrial and environmental biotechnology has been described as the third wave of biotechnology innovation (following energy. Synthetic biologists are looking to develop and extend this work to understand. Synthetic Biology and the Next Assault on Biodiversity and Livelihood. A biotechnology example is the use of naturally occurring oil-devouring microorganisms at the site of the 2010 oil spill off the US Gulf Coast. probiotics and glycolnutrients used to raise the value of certain foods or nutrient-enriched plants. such as nutraceuticals. healthcare and agriculture). Environmental applications of synthetic biology are currently targeted at pollution control and ecological protection. ETC Group. Other environmentally relevant examples of synthetic biology applications include laboratoryconstructed synthetic biofilms. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 113 . Researchers are leveraging natural processes to develop microorganisms that can accumulate and/or degrade substances such as heavy metals and pesticides. health products (e.  Preservatives. vitamins) and processing aids in the manufacturing process of food and food derivatives. 217 Due to the nature of these applications. Synthetic biology is presented as being able to assist and facilitate with many of the challenges currently being faced in this field.g.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Metabolites. 218 Synthetic biology and genetic biology is being used in many different ways to tackle these challenges:  For mobilisation purposes: such as bacteria being modified to increase their ability to absorb metals  For detection through biosensors  For transformation of chemicals and substances.7. which are being developed for use as environmental biosensors.

Bio-surfactants are naturally produced by bacteria. it shares many attributes and investigation pathways with nanotechnology. 7. the field uses.” Figure 18 illustrates the process of creating a synthetic cell as an example of how the interaction of enabling technologies makes synthetic biology possible. Convergence with Other Enabling Technologies Due to the systems approach of many synthetic biology disciplines. the overlap and interconnectedness led Mihail Roco and William Sims Bainbridge (2002) to describe synthetic biology as the “convergence of emerging technologies.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 These sensors could be used to monitor soil for nutrient quality or signs of environmental degradation. Synthetic biology may offer the ability to enhance the features of microbially produced bio-surfactants to tailor them to specific spills or otherwise polluted areas. nanotechnology. or fungi and are environmentally friendly. Furthering nanoscience is a natural progression for synthetic © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 114 . Biotechnology. overlaps and is driven by several other established scientific disciplines. It is also equally hard to cleanly and consistently distinguish those mentioned from other areas of scientific inquiry.7.4. In this respect. Figure 18: Example of the convergence of technology that makes synthetic biology possible Source: Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues Bio-nanoscience Since synthetic biology occurs at the nanoscale. such as cognitive neuroscience or even stem cell research. The design of biological “wetting agents” or bio-surfactants could increase the efficiency of bioremediation efforts and minimise the extent of damage from pollutants. yeasts. information technology and synthetic biology are so intimately interconnected that it is difficult to make neat distinctions among them.

etal. As an example. from an engineering perspective. D. Synthetic biology provides a mechanism to test. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology. E. self-repair and reproduction.. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars European Academies Science Advisory Council (2011) Synthetic Biology: An Introduction. rDNA cannot address all issues associated with genetic engineering. researchers to better understand and define the functions of genes and physiological systems. Research into addressing these shortcomings is driving the development of new processes and scientific understanding through synthetic biology.” allowed for some important successes. U. However. through modelling and manipulation of living systems. 222 Combining the ease at which DNA can now be synthesised with developments in computer modelling.S Department of Agriculture. Synthetic biology allows. Parens. Synthetic biologists use sequencing to verify that they fabricated their engineered system as intended. The ability to sequence and synthesise DNA allows the design and redesign of biological systems. et al. As our understanding in this area increases. modelling.. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology. using synthetic biology. 220 Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology Biologists believe that synthetic biology is a window through which they can understand how living things operate. Beyond the technical shortcomings... E. there is a deeper conceptual problem with the existing approaches to genetic engineering. such as “biosynthetic” insulin. nanoscientists are using synthetically produced viruses to construct battery parts. Synthetic biology relies and is driven by concepts from molecular biology and chemically synthesised DNA. and reproduction. 220 221 222 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 115 . 219 In this light. the building of de novo proteins and the use of bioinformatics to predict and analyse those products allow synthetic biologists to create 219 Rejeski. 221 The rDNA technology..Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 biology in the business of synthesising whole cells or other living systems. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars. messy since knowledge built up in this discipline can be difficult to translate to other projects and fields of study. or “genetic engineering. (2011) Synthetic Biology A Trip Around the Neighbourhood. Large-scale genome sequencing investigations are providing a wealth of information on naturally occurring organisms. Parens. through sequencing. rDNA is expensive and. our current understanding of the life sciences. it has become evident that current techniques underestimate the complexity of naturally occurring processes. attempts are being made to create manmade cells that are capable of selfassembly. Furthermore.

with the added dimension of being able to design.. cells can be viewed as networks much like the information networks in information technology. 223 Engineering and Information Technology Engineers working in the field of synthetic biology hope to bring a level of standardisation. Furthermore. Differences between predicted and measured system behaviour can identify gaps in understanding and explain why synthetic systems do not always behave as intended. predictability. how biological molecules bind substrates and catalyze reactions. et al.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 systems that are less complex than naturally occurring systems but are also more efficient at producing the products we want. For this reason. and reproducibility to biology. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars.. and how multi-component integrated systems behave. Microscopy and flow cytometry are examples of useful measurement technologies. multi-scale models of gene regulatory networks have been developed that focus on synthetic biology applications. synthetic biology needs to develop transferable and modular tools and compatible building blocks comparable to those used in traditional engineering. build and manipulate engineered biological systems.. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology. Parens. Synthetic biology will benefit from better models of. technologies which allow many parallel and time-dependent measurements will be especially useful in synthetic biology. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 116 .. 226 Gutmann. Recently. precise and accurate quantitative measurements of biological systems are crucial to improving understanding of biology and synthetically produced components. E. A NEST Pathfinder Initiative. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars. The Ethics of Synthetic Biology and Emerging Technologies. Synthetic biology is an expansion of biotechnology. DNA can be viewed simply as information. 225 From an engineering perspective. As with all other areas of science and engineering. Measurements help to explain how systems work and provide the basis for model construction and validation. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology.. et al. the convergence with information technology and computer modelling has large implications for where and how production of synthetic parts can take place. 224 For this engineering approach to be successful. For this reason. (2007)Synthetic Biology. Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues. Sophisticated computer modelling and simulations are allowing synthetic biologists to better predict system behaviour prior to fabrication. 224 225 226 223 Parens. A. E. how DNA encodes the information needed to specify the cell. (2010) New Directions.

synthetic biology is a tool for manufacturing new molecules and molecular systems. in making medicines quickly and inexpensively. They have also produced biofuels that can harness energy directly from plants and the sun. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 117 . for example.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Chemistry From the perspective of a chemist. Chemists have used synthetic biology to directly manipulate chemical reactions in living systems.

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8.0 CONTRIBUTION TO ADDRESSING AUSTRALIA’S MAJOR NATIONAL CHALLENGES
A number of major challenges are facing Australia, both nationally and from a global perspective. These challenges will impact on the future growth and prosperity of Australia and will need to be overcome or at least mitigated for the benefit and advancement of the nation. Taking into account the opportunities, risks and barriers discussed in this roadmap study, the potential contribution of the new and emergent enabling technologies to meeting some of these challenges is discussed. The major national challenges, many of which are interrelated that are facing Australia include:  Capturing opportunities from the mining boom  Impacts of climate change  Increasing demand for energy  Sustainable use of natural resources  Ageing of the population and health  Food security with rising global demand for food  Biosecurity  Changing factors of global competitiveness aligned with major shifts in the global geopolitical economy  National defence and uptake of enabling technologies in ‘soldiering of the future’ This section discusses the potential of enabling technologies to address Australia’s national challenges listed above. The most attractive early applications of enabling technologies are those that can yield large payoffs from small effort with low development requirements. These applications include sensors, computer devices, catalysts, and therapeutic agents. Many other applications, such as materials and energy production systems present greater challenges of production cost and complexity.

8.1. Mining Boom
Overview
Due to the appetite for natural resources of developing nations, notably China and India, Australia is currently experiencing a mining boom. As this boom is focused on finite resources, Australia needs to maximise and leverage the benefits for all Australians. The challenge facing the mining industry is that Australia’s share of global mineral investment in exploration is
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declining. At the moment, many companies are trading the increased technical risk of discovering and developing Australian deposits for the higher sovereign risk associated with operating in other countries. 227 To secure the future of the minerals industry, Australia needs to leverage the use of enabling technologies to solve the technical challenges that will be associated with Australian mineral operations. These challenges include:  Limited or no outcrop  Greater depth of operation  Higher rock stresses  Increased gas levels  Lower grades  Scarcer human resources  Globally high standards of safety and health  Appropriately strict environmental impact regimes. Australia outperformed many other developed economies through the global financial crisis, avoiding a recession. This economic strength is due in no small part to the mining sector, leveraging an abundance of natural resources and unprecedented demand from developing nations (for example; Brazil, Russia, India and China). Emerging nanotechnologies and biotechnologies have the potential to improve the environmental and production performance of the mining industry in Australia. These technologies will enable Australia to extract better value from mineral resources and will assist in addressing the challenges of sustainability and international competition.

The Role of Enabling Technologies
One important application of enabling technologies in the Australian mining industry is in reducing the environmental cost of mining activities. For example, bioremediation and phytoremediation have important applications in the stabilisation and isolation of mine wastes. 228 rDNA technology may play an important role in this. Transgenic plants with enhanced phytorememdiation capabilities have already been developed. Similarly transgenic and even synthetic microbes may also be used in mine site bioremediation. Transgenic microalgae have already been used for the removal and recovery of heavy metals from industrial wastewater,

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CSIRO, Minerals Down Under: helping to transform the minerals industry in Australia, accessed 1/08/2011, available at: www.csiro.au/org/Minerals-Down-Under-Overview.html Mukhopadhyay, S., and Kumar Maiti, S. (2010) Phytoremediation of Metal Enriched Mine Waste: A review, Global Journal of Environmental Research

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and other transgenic microbes have been employed to biodegrade heavy metals in soil to less toxic and/or less bio-available products. 229 As greater economic value is placed on the preservation of the environment, Australia can leverage its research capability to become a world leader in minimal-impact mining, and mine site regeneration. Biotechnology also has applications in the extraction of minerals. Biomining is the processing of metal-containing ores using micro-biological technology, and is currently used commercially to enhance the extraction of gold and copper, and to a lesser extent to leach base metals from ores and concentrates. 230 Biomining technologies, including bioleaching, can reduce capital costs and environmental pollution associated with metal extraction. Conventional techniques for the recovery of metals from low-grade ores are highly capital and energy intensive, and come at a high environmental cost. Biomining lends itself to processing low-grade deposits, especially small or remote deposits that can’t be cost-effectively treated by existing technologies. As more low-grade ore deposits are being exploited in Australia, and environmental conservation becomes a higher national priority, biomining is expected to become more commercially viable. Biohydrometallurgy is an area that utilises enabling technologies from a large number of areas. Applications involve microbial mining, oil recovery, bioleaching, water-treatment and others. Biohydrometallurgy is mainly used to recover certain metals from sulphide ores. It is usually utilised when conventional mining procedures are too expensive or ineffective in recovering a metals such as copper, gold, lead, nickel and zinc. Bioleaching uses bacteria to extract metals from ore. This technique is most commonly used in copper and gold mining. Similarly, bio-oxidation also uses bacteria to release metals in ore bodies. These techniques have several advantages over traditional methods including improved recovery rates, low capital and energy costs, the potential to be used in remote locations and lower skill requirements than technically advanced mechanical systems. Biotechnology can also be used in oil extraction. Microbial enhanced oil recovery (MEOR) uses microorganisms to increase the amount of oil recoverable from wells. Acids and/or gases produced by microorganisms can be used to free oil pockets in reservoir rock and therefore increase oil extraction. MEOR technology is currently being used at a small scale in several oil fields. Nanosensors are also being used in oil and gas extraction by assisting in the detection of uncharted reserves. Further, nanosensing technologies are expected to have many other

Shukla, K., et al (2010) Bioremediation: Developments, current practices and perspectives, Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology Journal.
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Brierley, C. (2008) How will biomining be applied in the future? Tran. Nonferrous Met. Soc. China

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Current actions looking to address some of these issues include changing the way buildings and infrastructure are designed. for Australia. Expected continued high demand for natural resources will drive research in this area. but they may become vulnerable if global warming exceeds 3. 8.0°C. storms.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 applications in the mining industry. Even if adaptive capacity is realised. agriculture and tourism have larger coping ranges and adaptive capacity.ipcc. Higher temperatures will lead to decreases in water supplies. health (heat-related deaths). Climate Change Overview The emission of greenhouse gases from human activity and energy use are major contributing factors to climate change and associated increases in global temperatures.2. IPCC. Potential advantages include increasing leaching rates.gov.shtml Working Group II Report "Impacts. "Ecosystems. available at: http://www. including heat-waves. increase tolerance to harsh conditions or produce novel characteristics that improve oil recovery. greenhouse gas emissions are expected to continue increasing. the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)232 concluded that. a continued decline in rainfall in southern Australia. available at: http://www. water security and coastal communities have a narrow coping range. such as more frequent and more extreme weather events.0°C of global warming.ch/publications_and_data/publications_and_data_reports. Each decade in Australia since the 1940s has been warmer than the last with 2001 to 2010 being the warmest decade on record in Australia and around the globe. Adaptation and Vulnerability. 231 A changing climate will have consequences in Australia.au/announcements/media_releases/climate/change/20100105. rethinking the way vulnerable coastal areas are developed and planting more drought-tolerant crops. cyclones and bushfires. In 2007. 2007. Synthetic biology also has the potential to allow the harvest of coal bed methane through synthetic microbial digestion. diversifying the water supplies in cities and improving Australian water use. particularly for resource management and environmental remediation uses. vulnerability becomes significant for 1. 2010." 231 Annual Australian Climate Statement 2009. advanced biotechnologies may be used to optimise and synthetically produce bacteria and microorganisms for applications discussed above. Looking to horizon 2 and 3 applications. Bureau of Meteorology. As demand for fossil fuels continues to grow through increased energy requirements and population growth.shtml 232 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 121 .bom. Energy security.5 to 2.

transport disruption. sea-level rise and changed rainfall regimes will affect urban infrastructure including failure of urban drainage and sewerage systems. potential impacts of climate change on Australia and its economy include:  Water scarcity and supply reliability. Global warming may also alter the spread of infectious diseases to new geographic regions and therefore cause new health risks in new areas. 2008. and greater building damage.pdf © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 122 . 233 The productivity of agriculture. available at: http://www. The Garnaut report recommends the following three areas of consideration that will play a key role in Australia dealing with climate change affects:  Innovation Nation – the ability of Australian’s to adapt and innovate to climate change and associated opportunities.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Climate change is expected to impact almost every aspect of the Australian economy. It is expected that if Australia takes no action. domestic and industrial water use. forestry and fisheries is also expected to be affected by changing climate patterns and extreme weather events. built infrastructure.csiro. potential blackouts. Australian ecosystems and biodiversity. carbon pollution could be 20 per cent higher than 2000 levels. and environmental flows. disrupting ecosystem function and causing the loss of ecosystem services. altered groundwater and soil conditions. agriculture. disease patterns and associated health risks are all expected to be adversely affected by climate change.au/files/files/piih. society and environment. The Australian AUD $214 billion export sector is particularly exposed due to the vulnerability of the key export commodities. 233 Addressing National Challenges.  Higher temperatures.  Losses of unique Australian animal and plant species. opening up new challenges and opportunities for enabling technology based medical applications. by 2020. water resources. particularly irrigation dependent agriculture. According to the CSIRO. affecting irrigation. CSIRO. Tourism will also be impacted by changes to natural habitats of high tourism worth. To address these issues.  Development and population growth in coastal regions will exacerbate the risks from sea-level rise. regional and remote communities. Furthermore. the Australian Government has a target of reducing carbon pollution from 2000 levels by between five and 25 per cent.

g. energy capture and storage.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Transforming the land sector – adapting to higher costs of producing farm products. the following applications of enabling technologies are expected to be of great importance for addressing climate change:  The development of biofuels to supplement or replace carbon intensive fossil fuels  The use of biotechnology to produce feedstock for chemical and plastics to replace reliance on fossil fuels  The genetic modification of crops to adapt to increasing aridity or pest infestations  Use of manufactured nanomaterials such as metal oxides as a slurry additive  Using biosensors to monitor soil nutrient quality. chemical fertilisers) and sewage treatment pose a modern and challenging problem to many countries.  Sensors – devices that use an immobilised biologically related agent (such as an enzyme. or air. could help mitigate these effects. contain. but also in making the most of anticipated higher food prices. industrial and household sectors involves greater use of low-emissions electricity. eliminate.  To leverage and use efficiently and sustainably Australia’s natural resources. The increased demand for energy and associated energy price increases could drive developments and uptake of bioenergy and industrial biotechnology in processes where energy consumption can be reduced. Waste from industry (e. particularly plant varieties with increased stress tolerance. water. Sensors preforming these functions will become available at the nanoscale. The development and adoption of agricultural biotechnologies. fuel cells. sediments. Two main applications include:  Remediation – the use of microorganisms and nanomaterials to reduce. moisture availability and/or environmental degradation.  Electricity transformation – the lowest-cost path to reducing emissions in the transport.  More efficient energy production and storage. antibiotic. Given the complex compounds that are required © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 123 . including power generation. agriculture (e. The Role of Enabling Technologies Enabling technologies will play an important role in addressing the effects of climate change. Enabling technologies can be used in the environmental services sector to repair and monitor environmental conditions. heavy metals). organelle or whole cell) to detect or measure a chemical compound. In particular. etc. or transform contaminants present in soils. Currently technology developments are focused on bioremediation and improving the ability of microorganisms to breakdown and neutralise harmful compounds.g.

Climate change is an integrated issue that is affected by a large number of external factors. Many of the potential benefits of enabling technologies to address climate change are linked and integrated to the application of renewable energy and resource efficiency. self-healing and biologically compatible. Solutions are also being investigated to increase the resistance of microorganisms to toxins and metals to allow a broader application of bioremediation techniques and technologies. the drive towards clean renewable energy and a low carbon emission future is becoming increasingly important in Australia. For this reason. These energy sources are high emitters of carbon dioxide. the application of costeffective. renewable. For example.3. Biosensors are likely to be used over conventional methods when continuous results are required. monitoring of bioterrorism. include: © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 124 . low-emission energy sources will contribute positively to Australia’s energy future. e. Associated with these breakthroughs. Therefore. a major contributor to global warming and climate change. microbes could be used to remove sulphur compounds when burning fossil fuels and therefore reduce the effects of acid rain. it is likely that metabolic pathway engineering will provide a solution to improve efficiencies. as identified by the CSIRO.g. Advances in the quality and amount of information available will require new sensor designs for effective biological monitoring. chemical weapons. which is discussed further below. tracking and analysing climate change and its effects. explosives and drinking water. Biosensors will also play an important role in assessing. biological monitoring will need to integrate information analysis with appropriate in-situ responses to be considered a useful advance over existing techniques. Biosensors (including nanosensors) can be used for long-term monitoring of environmental conditions and biodiversity. The national priorities to address Australian energy use. biotechnology and nanotechnology is also being used to produce solutions that can be applied as pre-treatment for chemicals or fuels to reduce the presence of harmful compounds.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 to be treated (mainly from industrial processes). Increasing Demand for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Sources Overview Australia is currently dependant on finite natural resources for energy production. Advances in technology are allowing for in-situ sensing capabilities for biological conditions including being self-powered. 8. In addition to bioremediation and biosensors.

solar and geothermal. Without major changes to address energy use and climate change. 2011. The development of cleaner technologies for fossil fuel combustion. Electricity generation and transport fuels are important for Australia’s clean energy future due to its large land mass and long distances between population centres. 234 Developing nations will demand the largest portion of energy into the future. The role of technological innovation is critical to a clean energy future. with the Asia-Pacific region being the world's largest consumer. Energy Information Administration. This will create new energy related issues including:  Security and sustainability of energy supply  The link between combustion of fossil fuels and dramatic changes in climate  Availability of technological innovation in energy conversion. Both are major sources of electricity for the country. Summary and Policy Implications.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Supporting a smooth transition to a new energy future.iea.246. black coal reserves have an estimated potential life of 100 years and brown coal 500 years. The International Energy Agency 235 has shown that by using existing technologies more effectively and by accelerating development of new technologies. It is expected that 80 per cent of the demand for energy will be met by fossil fuels out to 2030. and are expected to continue to be so into the future.96. security and sustainability.  Accelerating large-scale cuts to emissions. natural gas and coal with CO2 capture and storage  Increased use of biofuels for road transport. Contributions from renewable energy sources such as hydro. available at: http://www.cfm The Outlook to 2050 and the Role of Energy Technology. Natural gas reserves are estimated to have a life of about 60 years in Australia. International Energy Agency. wind and solar are currently at low levels compared to existing power generation techniques. industry and building sectors  Decarbonised power generation through renewable energy sources such as wind. Australia has large fossil fuels energy resources.204/forecasts/ieo/index. available at: http://38. a clean and sustainable energy future is possible. 234 235 International Energy Outlook.org/textbase/npsum/etp.  Securing access to cost competitive petroleum resources. biomass. Australian Government policy has historically stressed energy competitiveness. increasing energy use and population growth will continue to drive the nation’s reliance on fossil fuels. Estimates suggest that the world will need 50 per cent more energy in 2020 than current levels. This future can be realised through a number of key strategies:  Realising energy efficiency gains in the transport. coupled with carbon capture and storage has been favoured to support continued use of black coal.pdf © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 125 . transmission and use.

thermoelectric devices. environmental management. Two studies that are applicable to Australia include a US study suggesting that potential reductions from a number of nanotechnology based products could be about 15 per cent of total energy consumption (lightweight materials in transport. The development of industries around addressing Australia’s increasing need for energy through enabling technologies has the ability to create a growing market sector that will have positive flow on effects to other industry sectors. hydrogen production. Some possible applications of nanotechnologies in energy systems have been identified as:  Energy conversion: solar cells.  Energy transmission: superconducting cables. The Role of Enabling Technologies The enabling technologies discussed in this report have the potential to address issues associated with increasing demand and consumption of energy resources.  Energy use: conservation in manufacturing industries and construction materials for transport.  Energy storage: supercapacitors. A second study from the UK estimates that an approximate reduction of 20 per cent in greenhouse gas emissions is possible by 2050 from improved storage and the introduction of a © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 126 . practical and integrated solar cells. Such a sector would aid in accelerating the cost competitiveness of renewable and other clean energy sources against existing forms of energy such as fossil fuels. fuel cells. These materials and components will have a wide variety of applications in energy production. catalysts for combustion. Many of these applications offer potential energy savings and reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. Nanotechnologies Developments in manufactured nanomaterials may provide lighter. stronger and increased thermal and electrically efficient materials. selfoptimising motor systems. hydrogen distribution. catalysts. smart roofs with reflectivity control and energy-efficient separation membranes). CO2 capture and storage. hydro and wind turbines. fuel cells and more efficient. clean coal. One such example is metal/organometallics that can to be used to improve catalytic converters. batteries. hydrogen storage. fuel cells.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Government programs have also encouraged the adoption of renewable energy production such as photovoltaic systems. as well as ensuring Australia’s energy security by reducing the nation’s dependence on fossil fuels. solid-state lighting.

storage. This study identified the following as opportunities for applications of nanotechnologies:  Horizon 1: energy conservation. public–private partnerships are required and are currently being used in the development of low-emission coal combustion processes and carbon capture and storage technologies. Properties of nanomaterials such as carbon nanotubes. aerogels and fuel-borne catalysts are seen as short term opportunities. transmission and use. storage and use. will continue to change traditional approaches to energy conversion. The development of nanoscale materials. as well as the methods to characterise. A horizon 1 analysis of global energy markets suggests that short term impacts of enabling technologies will be in more efficient use of existing resources rather than in the creation of new products such as hydrogen-based technologies. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 127 . In this respect. This potentially can aid in accelerating chemical reactions and improving the efficiency of many chemical processes. and reduce the costs of using cellulosic biomass. catalysts for combustion. manipulate and assemble them. gas and coal. Dyesol (dye sensitised solar cells). Ceramic Fuel Cells. Energy saving technologies and applications in transport are also expected to have a large impact in the short term. will impact the energy markets. environmental management. photovoltaic cells. reduce biomass and energy input requirements. the commercialisation of energy generation systems such as improved photovoltaics and focussed solar systems and hydrogen fuel cells. advanced photovoltaic systems using engineered nanomaterials. Biofuels Energy prices are expected to continue to increase into the future. is their high surface area per unit volume which leads to much higher surface activity than in typical materials. solid-state lighting. Given the time required and scale of expenditure involved in commercialising new technologies. In horizons 2 and 3.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 hydrogen economy.  Horizon 2: catalysts for conversion of biomass.  Horizon 3: hydrogen production. This will lead to new agricultural feedstocks and the development of new enzymes to increase production capacity. Origin Energy (silicon sliver solar cells) and Hydrexia (hydrogen storage). driving an increase in R&D for biofuels. Examples of Australian companies in the energy sector utilising enabling technologies include CAP-XX (supercapacitors). fuel cells. nanocomposite materials.

there are two places in biofuel production where biotechnology is used. while bagasse is simply burned to generate electricity. the development of crops tailored to bioenergy production with increased oil content or maize) and new processes that improve the conversion of biomass to fuel. many biofuels are produced without using modern biotechnology. However. A pulp and paper mill can produce a variety of paper from wood while using wastes and residues to generate electricity. Breakthroughs are also occurring in photosynthetic algae and using synthetic biology for the production of bio-hydrogen using engineered E. developments in biorefineries are occurring rapidly utilising biotechnology. already process biomass the energy as a by-product.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Current research and technologies will be able to use biotechnology to increase the production of biofuels such as cellulosic ethanol through the development of super-fermenting organisms and more efficient feedstock. A number of these are included below: © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 128 . Many industries. Biotechnology and synthetic biology will also play an important role in the development of commercial grade biofuels. However. Currently. These production plants do not use modern biotechnology. Likewise. coli. the production of ethanol from sugar cane relies on conventional fermentation. starch and water via a synthetic enzymatic pathways. including food processing and pulp and paper. a method that has been used for millennia. Ethanol is produced from sugar cane through fermenting sugars with yeast. There are also existing biorefineries that use enzymes produced from modified microorganisms to convert starch into sugars that are then fermented into ethanol. Horizon 3 applications are expected to result from research into producing electric current directly from synthetic living cells without the need for post processing.

Fuel Cells Fuel cells are expected to play a major role in addressing the increased demand for energy as well as providing benefits to climate change and the environment. pressing. the high platinum content of electrocatalysts and the instability of platinum under long-term operational cycling conditions. 2007 Debate over the use of food crops and cropland for biofuel production. straw. wheat and soybeans to produce fuels. product separation. miscanthus. separation. as well as debates over the environmental benefits of using maize.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Table 14: Characteristics of New Types of Biorefineries CONCEPT TYPE OF FEEDSTOCK Wet biomass: green grasses and green crops such as lucerne and clover Whole crop (including straw) cereals such as rye. Despite advances in recent years. catalytic synthesis Cell disruption. reed. biochemical conversion Pre-treatment. An expected outcome is a shift in research priorities to non-food crops such as grasses and tree species that can be grown on land unsuitable for crop agriculture. separation Combination of sugar platform (biochemical conversion) and syngas platform (thermochemical conversion) Thermochemical conversion: torrefaction. wheat and maize Lignocellulosic-rich biomass. existing fuel cell technology still has several challenges. chemical and enzymatic hydrolysis. fermentation. including: the lower than theoretical efficiency of energy conversion. Nanoparticles may provide a solution as they have different catalytic properties from conventional materials. Carbon nanotubes may also play an important role in the development of more efficient fuel cells. gasification. HTU. fractionation. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 129 . digestion Wet or dry milling. could lead to substantial changes in biofuel production. The ability to place atoms of a catalyst on the well-ordered facets of a nanoparticle may be conducive to improving their properties and therefore fuel system performance. demonstration plant (US) Pilot plant All types of biomass Aquatic biomass: microalgae and macroalgae (seaweed) Pilot plant (R&D and demonstration) R&D (and pilot plant) Source: Ree and Annevelink. product extraction and separation PHASE OF DEVELOPMENT Green biorefineries Pilot plant and R&D Whole crop biorefineries Lignocellulosic feedstock biorefineries Two platform concept biorefineries Thermo chemical biorefineries Marine biorefineries Pilot plant and demonstration plant R&D / pilot plant. wood All types of biomass PREDOMINANT TECHNOLOGY Pre-treatment. pyrolysis. chaff.

For Australia. While silicon-based photovoltaics still dominate the market. Solar Energy The use of photovoltaic (PV) devices to produce energy is being increasingly recognised as an important component of future clean energy production. In this process. polymer electrolytes and electrodes of porous carbon with catalytic layers are often used. particular if it is to be used in vehicles. Current research is concentrating on methods to produce hydrogen that do not involve the release of greenhouse gases. Technologies such as nanostructured organic photovoltaics (NOPV) are believed to be a key to future PV systems. Nanostructured materials such as metal hydrides and carbon nanotubes are being researched to assist in addressing storage challenges. costs can be reduced by using plasma sputtered nanofilms. A critical factor in the establishment of a hydrogen economy is the supply of sufficient hydrogen for the community’s needs. which use nonporous ceramic electrodes at high temperatures to achieve high efficiencies. storage and use. an optimised NOPV © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 130 . the use of nanostructured catalysts may improve the efficiency of the reforming and gasification processes involved in producing hydrogen. The key to practical use of hydrogen is the ability to absorb and release the hydrogen over many cycles without deterioration of the storage device. the cost remains an order of magnitude too high to compete with power generation from fossil fuels. low temperature processing. with ample natural gas supplies. This has led to the concept of a “hydrogen economy” to replace the present hydrocarbon economy. Thin film technologies are providing promise of low cost PV advancements. Research is also being conducted into providing technologies that can be used for the introduction of fuel cells into vehicles. gasification of coal. In general terms. and the potential to make large area devices on flexible substrate cheaply make them very attractive. Hydrogen can be burnt in a combustion chamber to generate power in vehicles or used in fuel cells to generate electricity. breakdown of water by electrolysis or hightemperature reaction. Hydrogen Production. In lower temperature cells. Hydrogen needs to be compressed for distribution. Hydrogen also needs local storage solutions. Storage and Use The attraction of hydrogen as a clean energy source is that its combustion produces only water and no greenhouse gases. Low cost NOPVs. These materials use ceramic nanopowders to improve the fabrication of electrode membranes and thus reduce costs. There are various ways of producing hydrogen including: steam reforming of natural gas.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Australia has well established research foundations in solid oxide fuel cells.

With respect to domestic and industrial dwellings. With its abundance of solar radiation. this potential cannot currently be recognised as there is a lack of technology to assemble the bulk structure with molecular precision. The aim of this research is to reduce the cost of production of solar technologies and increase their efficiencies. Energy Conservation Energy efficiency is also a key Government policy area. organic nanofilms on polymers. NOPVs have the potential to provide large-scale. the high summer temperatures in Australia. and often high humidity. Light emitting devices (LEDs) utilise crystalline semiconductors. mean that air conditioning usage is high compared with other countries. Lighting also consumes a considerable amount of electricity. Smart glazing involves the use of multilayer nanoscale coatings applied to glass surfaces to enable them to change their transmittance and reduce internal temperatures. SSL is the direct conversion of electricity to light using a semiconductor. Australia is ideally placed to develop and exploit PV technologies such as NOPV. Potential solutions to reduce air conditioning dependence is more efficient insulation. the potential exists to manufacture both LEDs and OLEDs with close to 100 per cent of the thermodynamic efficiency for conversion of electricity to light. While silicon is the most widely used material. Reducing the amount of energy used is widely believed to be the quickest. The use of nanoscale production methods would allow the controlled arrangement of the charge transporting and light emitting building blocks and therefore greatly increase efficiency of SSLs. Potential candidates to serve this function include aerogels formed from nanostructured carbon or silica for the use of smart glazing. The management of single atomic defects is important for efficient light output. Solid-state lighting (SSL) offers the potential to greatly increase the efficiency of artificial light production.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 device requires controlling the organisation of nanocomponents. As with SSLs. crystalline silicon-on-glass technology. reduce the demand on energy resources and lower the greenhouse gas emissions. quantum dots and dye sensitised cells. Organic LEDs (OLEDs) are based on largely amorphous. Energy efficiency is a critical way for Australia to waste less energy. Australian research is examining a variety of alternative approaches including thin crystalline silicon slivers. low cost clean electrical power. simplest and most cost-effective way to reduce Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions. If this technology were available. very thin films of molecular materials. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 131 .

However.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 8. As developing nations grow. increase efficiency and maximise wastewater reuse will be important in implementing a sustainable future.4. Associated with increased water demand is the increased demand on agriculture to meet 236 Sustainable use of natural resources. including adaptive responses to climate change.236 Major challenges for Australia include the protection of environmental amenity.  Reduce the environmental impact of resource use at local. accessed 1/08/2011. Due to increases in water demand and climate change.  Identify transition pathways for sustainable resource use. resulting in rising resource use per capita. regional and global scales. the current rate of resource use by developed and developing nations is unsustainable. conservation and renewal of natural resources and ecological systems.csiro.html © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 132 . compounding environmental impacts. Sustainable Use of Natural Resources Overview Sustainable resource efficiency includes addressing concerns about the overexploitation of natural resources and establishing sustainable ways of living. strategies that reduce demand. Research institutes such as CSIRO are hoping that by understanding this relationship. available at: www. production and consumption can be made more sustainable. called ‘social metabolism’. CSIRO website. Unsustainable resource use may exacerbate the effects of climate change and therefore cause serious damage to the environment.  Promote increased consumer awareness and responsibility for resource use. Industrial metabolism is also being investigated for sustainable resource use by Australian industries. water management and waste management. One of the reasons for current unsustainable development trends is the large amounts of materials used by industrialised and developing societies. This includes the intelligent use. Policy and planning has realised the importance of sustainable resource use and has led to investment in understanding the relationship between society and natural resource use.au/science/Sustainable-Resource-Use. Natural resources underpin nearly every economy around the world. Resource efficiency impacts the following policy considerations:  The sustainable use of natural resources.  Dematerialise economic processes and reduce waste and greenhouse gas emissions by introducing eco-efficiency and cleaner production strategies. their resource use will continue to rise. natural resources.

Meat production. Enabling technologies also provides the opportunity to take advantage of previously considered waste such as wastewater. Purchases so far will return on average more than 600 billion litres a year. sewage and other industrial process by-products. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 133 . could result in major strains on Australian water resources. The Role of Enabling Technologies Enabling technologies provide the opportunity to do more with fewer resources. which is a key Australian agricultural output. Further to the previous discussions on biofuels. The Australian Government has several key policy areas to address water issues and security:  Growing more food with less water      Supporting farmers to grow more food with less water. this effect could potentially be greater in Australia than other nations. Investment in the future of farming in the Murray-Darling Basin. Updating old irrigation systems and putting in new water saving infrastructure. Biotechnology will play an important role in genetically modified crops that reduce resource input requirements and more efficiently produce feedstock for biomass processes. Water buy backs to put back in rivers.  Delivering water back to Australia rivers Putting more water into the Murray-Darling Basin's river system.  Helping families save water at home Better use of water in the home. both in Australia. showerheads and dishwashers. Using stormwater. competition for natural resources and agriculture will need to be carefully managed between food and feedstock requirements and those associated with energy production processes.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 growing food demands. National water efficiency standards mean that it is easier to buy water saving washing machines. desalination and recycling to reduce reliance on rivers for water supplies. As discussed above. is especially water intensive. Smart new projects to save water. and globally. water is and will continue to be a key natural resource for Australia. Agriculture is a key user of water resources and along with the potential for droughts. This will aid in addressing and meeting rapidly rising demands that humans are placing on all resources. As an already arid land mass.  Securing water for Australia's cities and towns      Alternative water supplies for cities and towns.

However many of these reserves are in hard to access and reach areas. fibre and biofuels. Tropical conditions favour tree plantations for wood. Research into nanostructured catalysts is currently being conducted to develop more cost-effective processes for natural gas recovery.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Catalysts for Conversion of Natural Gas Australia has large reserves of natural gas.5 years in 2005. 8. paper. up from 36.01 million people aged 65 years and over in Australia at June 2010. June 2010 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 134 .9 years. As a result. short-rotation trees such as pine and eucalyptus species. however there may be resistance from groups looking to protect native biodiversity. 237 Australian Bureau of Statistic. Ageing of the Population and Health Overview Australia. A number of biotechnologies could also be widely used in forestry programs. Improved tree varieties provide commercial opportunity in a range of areas. like other OECD countries. The potentially limited scale of many of these fields means that improved efficiency of catalytic conversion is required to make these reserves economically viable. Forestry Biotechnology is currently being used to develop faster-growing tree species for timber.600 people or 14 per cent since June 2005. These investigations include breeding programs focused on new varieties of fastgrowing. particularly for sustainable use within new biorefineries that can use tree and pulp products and therefore reduce the reliance on food crops. there were 3. Improved pest resistance is an important goal for tree breeding programs. the median age of the Australian population was 36. pulp. Figure 19 shows the age profile of the Australian population as at June 2010. and biofuel production. an increase of 370. 237 Furthermore. biotechnology and GM are being investigated to replicate tropical efficiencies in more arid conditions.5. At June 2010. is currently experiencing a shift in its population profile to an ageing population.

Australian Government.au/igr/igr2010/ © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 135 .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Figure 19: Australian Population Age Profile Source: Australian Bureau of Statistic. quality and expectation of health services. increasing demand for health services. June 2010 As a result of this ageing population profile. This demographic shift will occur in both developed and developing regions. available at: http://www. Health aspects have been of particular focus. Ageing is predicted to account for 40 per cent of this rise. the three major chronic disease burdens throughout the world are 238 The 2010 Intergenerational Report. By 2030. the 2010 Intergenerational Report projected that Australia’s health expenditure will increase from four per cent of GDP in 2009-10 to 7. the share of the global population over age 60 will increase while the share under 15 will decrease. as preventing or delaying chronic diseases is identified as key to improving wellbeing and containing health care costs. 2010.1 per cent by 2049-50. The effects of an ageing population profile will place increasing pressure on pension and healthcare systems. 238 Key drivers include. Technological innovation actually results in increased expenditure on health care due to increased range.treasury. Efficiency in delivery then becomes very important such as eHealth and other emerging technologies. According to the CSIRO. technological innovation (the development of new drugs).gov. but the increase in the share of older people will be more pronounced in the developed countries. and consumer demands for higher levels of care.

csiro. ageing-in-place applications. incorporating improved use of health data through more effective sharing of electronic health records.  Better understanding how environment and diet contribute to disease. and travel. This sustained economic growth and associated higher incomes in developing nations will create additional demand for healthcare. meat. mental disorders. fish and specialty foods.e. Technologies and applications range from preventative (i. skin protection) through to curative (medicines). consumer durables. chronic respiratory diseases. medicines and vaccines. diabetes and injuries. Exploiting technical advances in biology and other areas will play an important role in tackling these issues. 239 CSIRO Preventative Health Flagship website.3 billion in 2030 according to the UN. The Role of Enabling Technologies Enabling technologies such as nanotechnology. The world population will reach approximately 8. biotechnology and synthetic biology have the opportunity to make a difference to human kind through advances in a wide range of medical applications. Further to issues associated with an ageing population.html © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 136 . this is also the area in which the majority of ethical debates arise. is expected to occur in developing countries. However.  New protective foods and personalised nutritional and lifestyle approaches to disease prevention. higher education.  Better ways to monitor and measure health. synthetic components and replace or complement faulty or defective natural elements such as genes. available at: www.au/org/P-Health-Flagship. cardiovascular diseases. Almost all population growth. with China and India accounting for over a third of the global population. accessed 1/08/2011. 239 Scientists and researchers are working across a large number of health related areas including:  Better screening for and early detection of disease. nervous system and sense disorders. automobiles. neurodegenerative diseases and obesity.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 cancer. Within Australia. cancers. 97 per cent. the Government has identified seven disease burdens. early screening for cancer. Asia will continue to dominate the world’s population. increases in populations and incomes are also expected to have a large impact on the global economy that will have flow on effects to Australia.

This research has led to medical breakthroughs such as the cochlear implant and bionic eye. Gerontechnology The application of enabling technologies to ageing is termed ‘gerontechnology’.  Diagnosis and treatment – telehealth. mobility systems. These are summarised in the table below: © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 137 .  Assistive technologies – biorobotics. nanomedicine. brain/machine interaction. coping with degenerative diseases. linking medical aspects of ageing (gerontology) with technologies to assist in daily living. telemedicine and telecare to support the needs of older adults and caregivers remote from medical centres. The Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE) identified three main categories of interest in gerontechnology related to enabling technologies:  Security and safety – elderly-friendly homes. A key concept linking these categories is eHealth. communication and social interaction.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Australia is in a position to leverage current strong research capability in nanotechnology. Enabling technologies have to ability to contribute to many of these areas. biotechnology and information technology in the medical science area. prevention of falls.

diabetes. Pre-emptive refers to the early detection of diseases that could lead to early treatment and long term management (e. personalised and regenerative. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 138 . Nanotechnology Research and applications of nanomedicine can be classed as predictive.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Table 15: Possible Technology Areas with Potential Impact on Elderly Australian AREA 2008-13 2013-18 2018-23  Personal sensory devices to provide data about social and physical environments  Sensors to detect composition of drugs. cardiovascular disease.g.g. low cost haptic systems  Nanodelivery systems for medication  Biometric devices for identification  Brain/neuro computer interaction  Improved vision and hearing devices  Exoskeletons for lifting objects  Enhanced mobility systems  Service robotics  Artificial molecular muscles  Diagnosis and control of neurodegenerative diseases Assistive technologies  Aids for driving  Ultra lightweight wheel chairs  Improved prostheses  Handling devices Source: Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering. Personalised refers to effective personalised medical strategies for patients (e. pre-emptive. tailored / personalised drugs). 2010 The convergence of enabling technologies with cognitive science will play an important role in addressing issues associated with health and an aging population. Predictive refers to nanotechnology that can help clinicians predict diseases. foods and biohazards  Sociable technology to enhance relationships with one another and with machines  Tracking systems  Improved house design Security and safety  Smart homes  Improved networking / communications  Safer transportation  Implants for monitoring vital symptoms  Smarter homes  Falls alleviation  Smart clothes sensors Diagnosis and treatment  Telemedicine for remote health monitoring  Devices for medication compliance  Wider use of biosensors for diagnosis  Audio GPS for visually impaired  Rehabilitation robots  Tele-rehabilitation. hypertension and cancer). Cognitive science coupled with enabling technologies may yield new approaches to difficult areas such as brain-machine interfaces and dementia.

glucose testing and in vivo radiation monitoring. genomic testing. and detection of infectious microorganisms. drug delivery. Nanomaterials are also being used in tissue engineering. nanocomposites in integrated diagnostic devices. prosthetic dentistry. DNA sequencing. ceramic nanoparticles. proteomics. cancer diagnosis. real-time electrically based sensors for biological and chemical species. smart implants. Nanodevices such as silica-coated micelles. pharmacogenomics. Their applications include detection of microorganisms in samples. label-free. these technologies will extend the limits of current molecular diagnostics and enable point-of-care diagnosis as well as the development of personalised medicine. Nanowires and nanotubes are being investigated to potentially be used in building blocks for nanoscale electronics and optoelectronics. Nanosensors are being used in the treatment of oral and systemic diseases. medical diagnostics. Nanodentistry is aiding periodontology. Nanotechnologies enable the diagnosis at single cell and molecule level and can be incorporated into current molecular diagnostics such as biochips. dental root implants. realtime detection of a wide range of chemical and biological species could be exploited in arraybased screening and in vivo diagnostics. nanoparticles to improve sunscreens and cosmetics. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 139 . Use of this technology on a lab-on-a-chip would refine the examination of fluid droplets containing trace chemicals and viruses. tissue/organ regeneration. atomic force microscope and drug delivery. nano-arrays. dendrimers and cross linked liposomes are being used for cancer therapy. supramagnetic nanoparticles for use in MRI detection and carbon nanotubes for scanning probe tip. Boron-doped silicon nanowires have been used to create highly sensitive. implantology.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Short term nanotechnology benefits to human health and well-being include incremental improvements over existing methods in medical health care such as needleless vaccines. The small size and capability of these semiconductor nanowires for sensitive. soft and hard tissue reconstruction using nanfibrous biomimetric membranes. medical imaging. As such. nanoengineered structures for prosthetics. nucleic acid detection. blood screening. monitoring of metabolites in body fluids and detection of tissue pathology such as cancer. Nanobiosensors are being researched for integration into other technologies such as lab-on-a-chip to facilitate molecular diagnostics. orthodontics and endodontics. pathogen and virus detection. Most important applications are foreseen in the areas of biomarker research. respiratory monitoring. tooth regeneration.

and oligonucleotides have been used as molecular medicine where they are delivered to specific cell types to either inhibit undesirable gene expression or express therapeutic proteins. including ocular surfaces. DNA. realtime. Management of cancer through nanobiotechnology is expected to enable early detection of cancer and more effective treatment. all be it only at a laboratory level. various tissues including cartilage. These have been extensively investigated for drug and gene delivery applications. These rapid. cardiac patches. Research into cancer therapies is focusing on a better understanding at the molecular level. To date. Oncology Nanomedicine for Early Diagnosis and Early Treatment in Cancer 242 A key challenge in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer is targeting and local tumour delivery. molecular conjugates. RNA. micelles. Nanobiotechnology is being used to refine biomarkers. drug discovery. many nanotechnology tools have become available which can make it possible for clinicians to detect tumours at an early stage. and treatment of disease.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Genetic Nanomedicine for Gene Detection and Gene Delivery 240 Gene delivery is an area of considerable current interest. and various other tissues. A Technology Roadmap Battelle Memorial Institute and Foresight Nanotech Institute (2007) Productive Nanosystems. high-throughput screening of tumour cells without the need for sample preparation. nano-optical techniques may play an important role in advancing early detection. A Technology Roadmap © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 140 . A Technology Roadmap Battelle Memorial Institute and Foresight Nanotech Institute (2007) Productive Nanosystems. liver. A new technology technique named bioMicroNano-technologies have the potential to provide accurate. and drug delivery. and blood vessels have been reconstructed. dendrimers. and liposomes can be designed with different biological properties. 240 241 242 Battelle Memorial Institute and Foresight Nanotech Institute (2007) Productive Nanosystems. Nanotechnology-Based Regenerative Medicine 241 Combining biodegradable polymer scaffolds and specific cell types. Recently. These allow for the non-invasive harvest of cells by temperature reduction. periodontal ligaments. the majority of gene therapy systems are based on viral vectors delivered by injection to the sites where the therapeutic effect is desired. which are important basic components of personalised medicine. Cell sheet engineering is also being investigated which utilises temperature-responsive culture surfaces. Nanosystems such as nanoparticles. molecular diagnostics. Viral gene-transfer techniques can deliver a specific gene to the nucleus of a cell. bone. oesophagus. diagnosis. These harvested cell sheets have been used for various tissue reconstructions.

Cardiovascular Nanomedicine for Heart and Vascular Diseases 244 Current technology limits clinicians to diagnostic techniques that either image or functionally assess the significance of large obstructive vascular lesions. Pharmacological Nanomedicine for Drug Delivery and Drug Design 243 Nanobiosensors and nanobiochips are used to improve drug discovery and development. ultrasound and MRI. Advanced imaging methods and new targeted nanoparticles for early characterisation of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular pathology might represent the next frontier for combining imaging and rational drug delivery to facilitate personalised medicine. A Technology Roadmap © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 141 . including nuclear. Techniques have been developed recently to achieve molecular and cellular imaging with most imaging modalities. thrombosis. Nanotechnology is currently being used in the development of new drugs by considering drug-delivery at the earlier stages of drug design. Nanoscale assays are being investigated to contribute to cost-saving in screening. A Technology Roadmap Battelle Memorial Institute and Foresight Nanotech Institute (2007) Productive Nanosystems. The future of cardiovascular diagnosis already is being impacted by nanosystems that can both diagnose pathology and treat it with targeted delivery systems. Neurological Nanomedicine for Neuroscience Research 245 Applications of nanotechnology in basic neuroscience include those that investigate molecular. optical. cellular and physiological processes. and vascular biology. Nanotechnology is being utilised in cardiovascular diagnosis through applied nanosystems to the area of atherosclerosis. Many drugs discovered in the past could not be used in patients because a suitable method of drug delivery was not available. A Technology Roadmap Battelle Memorial Institute and Foresight Nanotech Institute (2007) Productive Nanosystems. Nanoengineered materials for promoting neuronal adhesion and growth to understand the underlying neurobiology of these processes or to 243 244 245 Battelle Memorial Institute and Foresight Nanotech Institute (2007) Productive Nanosystems. These and other technologies are currently in various stages of discovery and development. The rapid growth of nanotechnology and nanoscience could greatly expand the clinical opportunities for molecular imaging.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Nanolaser spectroscopy using the biocavity laser represent new tools that hold promise for detecting early stage cancer and may help to limit delays in diagnosis and treatment. Current imaging modalities do not allow for the possibility of imaging atherosclerotic disease at its earliest stages nor do available techniques allow routine assessment of atherosclerotic lesions susceptible to rupture and/or thrombosis. Nanotechnology can help diagnose cancer using dendrimers and kill tumour cells without harming normal healthy cells by tumour selective delivery of genes using nanovectors.

Imaging applications using nanotechnology tools. heart disease. those that focus on chemically functionalised semiconductor quantum dots are also being investigated.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 support other technologies designed to interact with neurons in vivo. Furthermore. and some cancers will also become inexpensive. Testing for serious genetic diseases into the future will become widespread and inexpensive. Testing for genetic profiles that increase the risk of chronic diseases such as arthritis. and nanotechnology approaches that facilitate the delivery of drugs and small molecules across the blood-brain barrier. avoiding the need for ongoing injections. which is a key neuropathological process that contributes to CNS ischaemia. Medical Devices An example of enabling technologies being used for drug delivery involves modified autologous cells that produce biopharmaceuticals in the patient. personalised medicines. Technology incorporating biotechnologies and nanotechnologies are improving diagnostic tools that will leverage discoveries in epigenetics. Biotechnology is aiding human health and well-being through gene based applications such as genetic screening and targeted. in particular those that use fullerene derivatives. Another early-stage innovation that could reach the market by horizon 2 and 3 is a nanodevice that releases drugs in response to over-expression of undesirable proteins. Applications of nanotechnology in clinical neuroscience include research aimed at limiting and reversing neuropathological disease states. type II diabetes. previously incurable diseases are being addressed with regenerative medicine using stem cell technology. Assisting this trend will be the continual decrease in genome sequencing costs. in particular. trauma and degenerative disorders. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 142 . This includes identifying drug targets. neuroprotective strategies. Genomic medicine and RNA based therapeutics may also provide improved patient outcomes through personally targeted therapeutics. Applications of nanotechnologies for neuroprotection have focused on limiting the damaging effects of free radicals generated after injury. or tailoring prescribing practices to the genetic characteristics of patients. Biotechnology Biotechnology has the potential to bring substantial improvements to healthcare delivery through more effective personalised therapies and the development of predictive and preventive medicine. Almost all research into improving human health will and is using biotechnology. Nanotechnology approaches are designed to support and/or promote the functional regeneration of the nervous system. improving drug delivery.

bioinformatics and microarray technology.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 genomics. Looking to horizon 2 and 3. The method uses diagnostics and bioinformatics to identify subgroups that respond or do not respond to specific drugs. screening of foetuses. biotechnology could be used to fight against antibiotic resistance through the development of new antibiotics. For instance. Pharmacogenetics 246 Pharmacogenetics examines the way in which genes and drugs interact. there are two main types of biotechnology-based in vitro diagnostic tests: immunological based on the specificity of antibodies to bind to a target molecule and molecular genetic based on the binding properties of similar gene sequences. This technology could pave the way to personalised health therapies where the type of prescribed drug and dosage are determined by an individual’s genome. A Technology Roadmap © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 143 . Genetic testing is likely to shift from identifying single genetic mutations to tests for multiple genes that increase the risk of diseases caused by a large number of different factors. and determine the presence or absence of mutations or other changes in an individual’s genetic material. Antibodies specific to a very wide range of molecules can be generated and used to detect signs of diseases or to detect foreign substances in a variety of human fluids. Genetic tests can identify specific genes. An increasing number 246 Battelle Memorial Institute and Foresight Nanotech Institute (2007) Productive Nanosystems. almost all drugs will have used biotechnology at some point in their development. such as blood or urine. or even to detect infectious agents such as the Human Papilloma Virus. In general. to identify a person’s risk profile for developing or passing on certain medical conditions. Diagnostics Diagnostic tests based on modern biotechnology are used to identify both genetic diseases and non-genetic diseases. Genetic testing can yield information in a wide variety of circumstances from pre-implantation screening of embryos during in vitro fertilisation. or of children or adults to diagnose genetic conditions. Therapeutics Biotechnological knowledge in small molecule drug development is expected to increase significantly over the next decade meaning that a growing percentage of small molecule pharmaceuticals are likely to be developed or produced using biotechnology. allowing professions to better characterise disease.

the effects of climate change and use of natural resources play an important role in food security. 8. Synthetic biology is also providing a platform on which general scientific knowledge about how human cells and genomes function and operate. The global challenge will be to increase food production through raising agricultural productivity efficiently. A subset of brain-machine interface technologies related to ageing healthcare is brain stimulation and regulation. biomaterials and microcontrollers. Since food production is heavily reliant on water and land resources. Food Security Overview Population growth and dietary changes are the main drivers in global food security considerations. smart proteins and programmed cells for the molecular classification of tumours. the world is facing an approximate 70 per cent increase in food demand out to 2050 from current levels. Combining nanotechnology. personalised medicines and accelerating the development of vaccines through rapid classification of viruses. whilst decreasing the environmental footprint of these activities. Bio and nanosensors will also play a very important role in the collection of quantitative dynamic data in minimally invasive ways. less invasive techniques have failed. Australia doesn't currently have a problem feeding its own © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 144 .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 of drugs tailored to groups of people who share specific genetic characteristics are likely to reach the market by horizon 2 and 3. These may include severe cases of epilepsy or depression and age-related diseases such as Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease.6. Examples include techniques that make use of neural impulses in the brain through brain imaging technologies that are used to control a device through non-invasive interfaces. Various enabling technologies play a role in these techniques such as sensors. Brain/Machine Interaction Human-machine interfaces cover any technology that allows humans to interact with technological devices. With an increasing global population. Synthetic Biology Synthetic biology is improving and providing breakthroughs in technologies that have reached their natural limit through biotechnology and nanotechnology. scientists are advancing medicines through metabolic engineering for more efficient large-scale screening methods. biotechnology and synthetic biology. Potential benefits of brain stimulation are for severe cases of disease or illness where alternative.

Concluding the Doha Round of multilateral CSIRO Food security explained: issues for Australia and our role in the global challenge. From these strengths. adaptation and mitigation. to expand opportunities for farmers in developing countries to maximise returns on their output and improve their incomes.  Building human capacity to meet the challenges and opportunities.  Australia has developed a strong capability in climate change research including studies on impacts.  Raising the importance and awareness of food in the public consciousness. livestock and fish breeding strategies). several key areas were identified as important to Australia’s food security:  A national approach to food (bringing together food related policy. The latter will increase demand for meat. 247 Demand for agricultural products will rise from an increase in both population and income.html 247 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 145 .csiro. regulatory agencies and research organisations). accessed 1/08/2011 www.  Australia has a strong research and development (R&D) base and agricultural R&D capability ranks among the best in the world.au/science/Food-security-explained. An increase in intensive agriculture and rising demand for many goods will exacerbate some of today’s environmental problems. on low quality soils and in the face of continual climate variability. fish and dairy products. sustainable management of natural resources and accelerated advances through new plant. The Australian Government is also actively involved in promoting the benefits of open trade and efficient markets. which require large inputs of natural resources including water and animal feed.  Australia has built strong links and capabilities in delivering technological developments to developing countries in the region. This report highlighted Australia’s strengths in dealing with food security issues:  Australian agriculture has maintained its leading position by producing food on the driest inhabited continent.  Australia has expertise in human health and nutrition research.  Investing in R&D to reverse declining agricultural productivity growth (improved water use. The Australian Government commissioned a report “Australia and Food Security in a Changing World” that was delivered in October 2010.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 population but has a humanitarian interest in food security and stability for its neighbours and other developing countries.

peanuts. breads and fermented beverages. The characteristics of new GM crops that are expected to reach market by horizon 2 include herbicide tolerance and pest resistance for barley. High-yield and disease-resistant plant feedstock are also being developed using synthetic biology for a number of industries. Of particular interest are technologies that increase yield and tolerance to salinity and drought in new plant varieties. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 146 . Many enzymes are already being produced using genetically engineered microorganisms to improve production efficiencies. By horizons 2 and 3. approximately half of global food and feedstock production is estimated to come from varieties developed using biotechnology. particularly for soybeans and cotton crops. The developing nations of China. and Beverages Sustained high demand for food and water will drive agricultural biotechnologies. Nanotechnology can help in a variety of ways including agrosensors (nanoagriculture) to monitor the health of crops and farm animals and nanosensors for monitoring spoilage bacteria and other indicators in the food industry. Breakthroughs in these research areas could provide benefits to farmers. but also to ensure there is a balance with field feedstock production for biomass and biofuel production. genetically engineered preservatives. amongst others. Biotechnology and synthetic biology will provide a platform for the development of metabolites. Research is also being conducted to improve yield and resistance to drought. research is being conducted on product quality. rice. peas. health products. consumers and entire nations (through better food security). it is estimated that GM crops could account for more than 75 per cent of hectares planted. particularly for developing nations. Water shortages and health risks from underdeveloped sanitary systems could also drive the development of industrial biotechnologies that reduce water consumption or purify polluted water sources. Enzymes are used in the production of cheeses. especially production and export subsidies in developed countries. Further. industrial processors.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 trade negotiations will reduce the distortions to global agricultural trade. The Role of Enabling Technologies The role of enabling technologies in addressing food security will be important in ensuring sustainable food production for human and animal consumption. Feed. salinity and higher temperatures from global warming. By horizon 2. potato. sugar beet. Food. Enzymes are another area of research utilising enabling technologies. flavours and fragrances that are typically difficult to grow. and safflower. India and Brazil are expected to drive this growth.

© Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 147 . Animals Biotechnology has three main applications in the livestock. Phytases increases the nutritional value of the feed by releasing phosphate and by optimising the animal’s phosphorous intake. The largest commercial application of biotechnology in animal breeding is the use of MAS to improve the accuracy and speed of conventional breeding programs. and sheep as knowledge in the area increases and costs decrease. Research is being conducted into the use of insects and pest-resistant varieties of honeybees and diagnostic tests for pathogens that attack honeybee hives. MAS is often used by pig breeders to screen for genetic problems and remove defective stock.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Enzymes can also be used in animal feed to improve digestibility and nutrition. Marker Assisted Selection (MAS) and GM may also be used for insects as they are an important part of plant industries. For instance. poultry and aquaculture industries: breeding. Early diagnostics has the ability to identify a plant disease and treat it before it causes significant crop and/or economic damage. propagation and health (diagnostic and therapeutic). Diagnostics can be used to identify inherited diseases in order to remove afflicted animals from breeding. Improved honeybee varieties are unlikely to be commercially available before horizon 2. This intern reduces the release of phosphorous into the environment and therefore reduces water pollution. Plant diagnostics is another important area where enabling technologies are being utilised. but new diagnostic tests could eventuate in the short term. Techniques used in these industries reflect and leverage the work done in the plant sectors. This technique is too expensive to be widely used for basic animal breeding. dairy cows. Cloning (somatic nuclear transfer) utilises advanced biotechnology and consists of removing the nucleus of an egg cell and replacing it with the nucleus (and DNA) of a donor individual of the same species. cattle. The cloned animal is identical to the animal that donated the DNA. up to 80 per cent of phosphorous in pig and poultry feed is bound by a molecule known as phytate. Horizon 2 and 3 will see MAS and other biotechnology techniques that do not involve GM likely to be widely used to improve commercial livestock species such as pigs.

accessed 1/08/2011. and for protecting and preserving Australia’s native wildlife.7. Various applications for emerging technologies exist including gold core oligonucleotides for biodefence from the nanotechnology sector. The growing fields of biotechnology and synthetic biology will bring rise to a biosecurity industry.biosecurity.000 km of coastline and Australia’s large area of pristine natural environments. The Role of Enabling Technologies Enabling technologies could potentially play a large role in addressing the major challenges faced in establishing and enforcing biosecurity in Australia. biosecurity needs to remain a priority area of consideration due to Australia’s plant and forestry industries being worth AUD $25 billion annually.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 8. or their toxins in indirect or direct acts against humans. industry.  The impacts of disease on economies. biotechnology tools and platforms (e. 60. available at: www. Biological materials pose unique security challenges that require non-conventional security mechanisms. 248 The National Centre for Biosecurity highlights the importance of containing the spread of unwanted pests and diseases. The key areas of research focus in Australia (as outlined by the Australian Biosecurity CRC) are developing and refining diagnostic tests.  Laboratory safety and security. DNA 248 Biosecurity Australia website. and society have a requirement to develop robust biosecurity systems that ensure public safety. meat and livestock. These include:  Infectious disease outbreaks. The amount of biological material required to undertake an attack is much less than that of chemicals. Government. improving understanding of disease ecology.au/ © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 148 . While Australia’s geography provides many natural advantages in keeping threats at bay. Biosecurity Overview Biosecurity aims to protect communities against the misuse of pathogens. This is vital for the success of some of Australia’s important industries. livestock or crops. including horse racing.g.  Dual use dilemmas in the life sciences.com.  Biological weapons and bioterrorism. societies and governments. and advancing surveillance methods for disease tracking.

This will ultimately require the participation of all stakeholders including individual scientists. Policy approaches with respect to biosecurity require international discussions to develop a common approach to securing dangerous pathogens and to mitigate the potential for misuse of research results. However. both intentional and unintentional.8. Australian businesses will also need to increase their energy and water efficiency and reduce emissions. restrictions that do not necessarily apply to regional trading partners. there is evidence that manufacturing has a multiplier effect on the rest of the economy by driving jobs. national governments. for example. 249 Future Manufacturing Industry Innovation Council (2010) Submission to the Victorian Government Inquiry into Manufacturing in Victoria © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 149 . Manufacturing is also the primary source of technological innovation in the Australian business sector. investments and sales in other sectors. the Australian manufacturing industry is facing increasing competition from regional trading partners and the associated rise of low cost. development and distribution of medical countermeasures.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 sequencing technology) for applications in biometric security devices and the ability to uniquely tag genetic codes for biosecurity using synthetic biology technology and concepts. This will need international collaboration on biosurveillance. and response to an incident. key changes that are redefining manufacturing are:  The disappearing boundary between manufacturing and services. low wage manufacturing economies. calculated that each dollar worth of manufactured goods creates another USD $1. 249 Furthermore. It also conducts 31 per cent of business R&D nationally. outbreak detection. Much of Australia’s higher value added activity is as a direct result of R&D activities of manufacturing firms. According to the Australian Business Foundation. the highest multiplier of any sector. and international institutions to develop a comprehensive biosecurity strategy. Further to increasing productivity and reducing costs. To meet these challenges.43 of economic contribution towards other sectors. Global Competitiveness and Productivity of Australian Industry Overview The Australian manufacturing sector is a significant contributor to the Australian economy. businesses. It produces around 12 per cent of GDP and almost 40 per cent of exports. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics has. Australian industry needs to find new ways of doing business that are more efficient. 8.

as they have been identified as the main drivers of manufacturing competitiveness across a range of nations. Australia needs to have a steady supply of highly skilled workers including scientists. The educational qualifications of the global workforce will also continue to change and improve. In developing countries.  Intangible assets.  Shift from mass production to customisation and personalisation. the share of the population with a tertiary degree is expected to increase from 26 per cent in 2005 to 36 per cent in 2025.  Collaboration and connectivity that accelerates innovation and competitiveness. A Deloitte report on manufacturing competitiveness identified a number of areas of importance for the Australian manufacturing industry. materials and energy. with China and India alone accounting for 40 per cent of the total. are increasingly important to the sustained success of manufacturing firms. The Australian Business Foundation also identifies key forces of change likely to shape the future environment for manufacturers:  More intensified competition. Investment in education is expected to result in a much larger share of the global working-age population in 2030 with some form of tertiary education. Most employment in developed countries will be in the service sector. 90 per cent of the global workforce will be in developing countries.  Growing importance of the low carbon economy.  More complex and varied opportunities for doing business globally.  New understandings of innovation based on smart problem-solving for customers which are accessible to all companies. In the OECD area. like know-how and know-who. not just those who can afford formal R&D and frontier technologies.  Technology that transforms entire business models.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  New niches to be exploited through outsourcing and in wider and more distributed global value chains. while employment in developing countries will shift out of agriculture and into manufacturing and services.  Manufacturing is no longer characterised by standardised mass production. At the top of the list was access to talent which is a change from traditional factors such as labour. the share of the population with a tertiary education is © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 150 .  Changing skills needs and imperatives. Australia’s global competitiveness will also be affected by the changes in workforce demographics of developing neighbours. researchers and engineers. In 2030.

smart machine and assembly tools. Two key features include. an increase in the global population with a tertiary education will increase the size of the labour pool available for biotechnology R&D. advances in technology have long been acknowledged as a key contributor to the health and survival of manufacturing and will continue to do so. high skill. a larger and better-educated workforce could support greater investment in industrial and primary production biotechnology. enabling technologies and education. automotive component design and manufacture. particularly services.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 projected to grow from just over five per cent to over 10 per cent in China. Examples of such manufacturing industries where this technology is relied upon and Australia has world class capabilities are: scientific and medical instruments. the increasing interdependence between manufacturing and other sectors of the economy. value added manufacturing where Australia has world class capabilities and technology. and to increase from 6. aerospace and defence component and system design. but in research. In developing countries. Access to and take-up of enabling technologies. global supply chain managers and service providers. Global workforce demographic shifts and increasing education levels may create opportunities for the enabling technologies sector. Manufacturers are now engaged not only in production. pharmaceuticals. for Australian manufacturers looking to compete on the global stage. technology alone is no longer enough as a key differentiator. The Australian Business Foundation highlights there is evidence that manufacturing is evolving to meet the challenges and realities of a knowledge-based economy. either through investment in R&D or through technology transfer strategies are central to the ability of manufacturers to survive in an increasingly competitive world. innovators. The Role of Enabling Technologies The future of manufacturing in Australia is reliant on high technology. materials. particularly with reference to enabling technologies. In Australia. specialist engineering concentrating on design for manufacture. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 151 . design and service provision. high wage. In essence. This requires an increasing focus on advanced processes.5 per cent to nearly 14 per cent in both Brazil and India in 2030. Given the high knowledge intensity of biotechnologies. However. advanced metals manufacturing and specialist food and beverage production. and how the knowledge economy operates in practice as a potential driver of new sources of business innovation and productivity for manufacturing. This leads to more integrated manufacturing businesses where they operate as inventors.

In order to compete internationally and increase the value add of their manufactured products. sporting goods. engineering. As stated above. this will mean building the knowledge and capability within a firm to integrate nanotechnologies and biotechnologies into new and existing products. transistors. including use in polymer additives. This includes R&D (including tapping into research organisations). this capability will take time to develop and integrate into commercial offerings. produce and deliver goods and services to customers. efficient electricity and heat conductors. This results in more competitive capabilities in the enterprises involved. Carbon nanotubes is an area of significant investment as their applications are wide ranging. Production of Chemicals Investment in biotechnology and synthetic biology also has potential to drive Australian competitiveness. prototyping. Further advanced applications include advanced optical lithography tools for the production of nanoscale features on microelectronic devices. super capacitors. These include nanoscale electronic memory applications. Service firms will also play a role in this development as they look to add value to physical products acquired from manufacturers by bundling them with other services. carbon composite fillers.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 manufacturing is the collection of activities that is required to develop. Applications include direct processing uses such as processing aids in food manufacturing to eliminate and treat industrial waste by-products such as the conversion of industry waste in carbon dioxide or water and the use of bio-surfactants. “Smart” nanomaterials which feature intrinsic properties and added properties and nanowires in circuitry such as micro/nanofluidic systems. electrodes. As a result. With respect to enabling technologies. Nanotechnology Nanotechnologies are providing the first applications of enabling technologies into the manufacturing industry. new services (such as engineering solutions) will need to be developed to capitalise on new opportunities. design and testing services during the production process. nanoparticles for high performance coatings. training and information/help desks. Australian manufacturers are moving away from “build to print” contracts to complete design to build capabilities. Services such as design and engineering of nanotechnology and biotechnology will require extensive in-house knowledge (or effective outsourcing options) of enabling technologies. adding to the resilience of Australian manufacturing. nanowhiskers for moisture wicking and stain resistant apparel. new technologies will drive new manufacturing products and process. With many enabling technologies still at the research or laboratory stage of development. The role of enabling © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 152 . and services like maintenance.

Battelle Memorial Institute and Foresight Nanotech Institute © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 153 . and milder pH conditions. Despite these advantages. A Technology Roadmap. Detergents. due to the high costs of enzymes or bioreactors and the costs of building or modifying production facilities to use biotechnology. and biopolymers. lower energy inputs. Biotechnology can create new enzymes through the use of a number of techniques including 250 2007. 250 As research continues and the use of enabling technology increases. solvents. Biotechnology can be used to produce a large number of biofuels and bulk and specialty chemicals. with current research aimed at expanding the range of useful enzymes. fabrics and consumer durables (e. Productive Nanosystems. In chemical production. Horizons 2 and 3 may see new biocatalysts and advanced fermentation processes that are faster. less expensive and more versatile than current practises. This can have several advantages including more specific reactions. the uptake of biotechnology in chemical production is limited. electronics casings and car components). biotechnology will become more cost competitive through improved production methods and the use of genetic modification and metabolic pathway engineering to increase the output efficiency of microorganisms. amino acids. vitamins. Bioplastics. including enzymes. Many are produced using modern biotechnologies. lower waste output and reduced environmental impacts. This approach is already established for ethanol production.g. organic acids. less demanding production conditions such as lower temperature and pressure. biotechnological processes can substitute one or more traditional chemical steps. Fermentation systems that permit more than one strain of a microorganism in a bioreactor could dramatically reduce production costs. manufactured from biopolymers are already commercially available. Textiles and Pulp and Paper There are many different enzymes currently on the market. antibiotics.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 technologies in protecting the environment and the added costs of pricing carbon will become more important in the future as developing countries begin to tackle with these problems. Production of Biomaterials Biobased chemicals have the potential to replace traditional materials such as wood and cotton in the production of packaging and containers.

New technologies transform 251 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (2009) The National Security Science and Innovation Strategy © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 154 . The rate of development of competing technologies will impact the use of enabling technologies in this sector. For examples. and the production of high energy-density biofuels from sugar cane and cellulosic crops. one-step synthesis of high-value chemicals and plastics using microorganisms in bioreactors. particularly in closed industrial system applications. smarter in preventative measures. but also in engaging with Australia’s neighbours. wave. National Defence and Security Overview Australia’s national defence and security is growing increasingly complex. stronger in response and more rapid in recovery. Remaining at the leading edge of enabling technologies is vital for the nation’s security. economic changes and catastrophic events. Defence also needs to ensure that Australia is ready for the challenges presented by broader environmental. The relative prices and availability of petroleum versus biomass feedstocks will also drive the industry as this influences the commercial viability of biotechnological production processes compared to processes based on petroleum. metabolic pathway engineering could radically change the types of products that can be produced by living cells. countering terrorism and protecting borders.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 genetic manipulation. agile and robust so as to anticipate and respond to new and emerging threats. In this respect. geothermal or nuclear power instead of biorefineries. and by advanced selection techniques. It will make Australia more effective in preparation. Breakthroughs or advances from other sectors or fields of research can be applied to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of national security capabilities. wind. Australia must remain technologically and scientifically alert. Australia’s defence forces are not only tasked with defending the nation. 8. social. In horizons 2 and 3. directed evolution. some countries are investing heavily in solar. The most probable industrial uses of biotechnology in horizon 3 is to produce enzymes for a range of industrial processes. protein engineering.9. 251 National security is increasingly affected by technological change in the broader community. Large-scale commercial production of bulk chemicals or biofuels from microorganisms or algae is difficult to estimate due to technical difficulties in scaling up production to commercial levels.

 Impact of demographic change. Of significance to enabling technologies is Australia’s collaboration with US Military research operations. with nanotechnologies and biotechnology. particularly medical biotechnology. not just military and defence operations. defence is actually adapting research from other sectors. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) A factor to consider is Australia’s defence relationship with other NATO countries.  Impact of energy and resource security. However. travel. biosecurity and other forms of security. defence applications will play an important role in the development of a wide range of enabling technology applications. Defence and national security often are at the forefront and drive technology development. DARPA are currently investing heavily in enabling technology development for defence and military applications. With organisations such as the DARPA receiving considerable funding for research into military applications of enabling technologies. Emerging concerns highlighted in this discussion related to the ETRM included:  Impact of climate change. there may be opportunities for Australian researchers to collaborate with organisations in the US and other countries. Terrorists or criminals can create or target vulnerabilities by exploiting ubiquitous or emerging technologies. energy. This will ensure Australia remains at the forefront of research in this area. Australia has very close ties with the US military. many of the applications of enabling technologies discussed in this section are applicable to defence and security. Therefore. In particular. store valuable information and manage finances. These include:  Nanoelectronics. The Role of Enabling Technologies Defence and national security is a combination of food. The National Security Science and Innovation Strategy 252 highlighted the relationship between national security issues and various topics discussed in this paper. optoelectronics and magnets for: 252 Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (2009) The National Security Science and Innovation Strategy © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 155 . In this respect.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 how societies communicate.

advanced sensors. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 156 . affordable materials Multifunction. advances in combat medical care.  Integration of humans and autonomous intelligences including brain-computer interface for equipment and weapons control.  Artificial life.  Enhanced performance.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011            Network centric warfare Information warfare Uninhabited combat vehicles Automation/robotics for reduced manning Effective training through virtual reality Digital signal processing  Nanomaterials for: High performance.  Biochip / integrated implants. An example of pharmaceutical applications for warfighters includes advances in biotechnology to manipulate circadian rhythms to enhance pilot alertness on long missions. As with applications in general society. immune systems and intelligences. Below is a general list of areas where enabling technologies may enhance future warfighters:  Extreme “hardened” endurance. Opportunities for enhancement include improved pharmaceuticals.  Extended sensory capacities. whilst also allowing for rapid recovery. amongst others. adaptive (smart) materials Reduced maintenance  Bionanotechnology for warfighter protection through: Chemical/biological agent detection/destruction Human performance/health monitor/prophylaxis Human Enhancement and Protection In a similar manner to general society. Further research is also being conducted to increase soldier awareness out to several days without adverse effects. new lighter and stronger materials.  Nano-enhanced tissue for trauma applications and human enhancement.  Self-healing and adaptive materials for protection and performance enhancement. enabling technologies have the ability to enhance many aspects of defence and military personnel. Other applications involve the development of foods that can provide vaccines and nutrients to soldiers more efficiently. military applications of emerging technologies could also raise ethical concerns.

Enabling technologies have the ability to enhance the following characteristics of existing sensors:  Low-power requirements. The creation of broad-spectrum vaccines may provide the ability to vaccinate a country's entire population against endemic diseases and biological weapons.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Future advances in biotechnology will also improve the protection of both the general public and military personnel from deadly biological agents. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 157 . energy systems. intelligence. The biotechnology. It is important to note that the new generation of sensors will need to integrate several fields of enabling technologies. Applications of nanomaterials in defence applications include:  Enhancements to stealth.  Ability to be incorporated into distributed networks. carbon and silicon nanotubes and biomimetics (electronic noses). Sensors A key area of importance for defence and security applications of enabling technologies is sensor technology. materials and micromachining techniques required to assemble an integrated biosensor are complex and require further development. Much of the sensor development for military use is coming from commercial applications such as medical devices.  Compact and lightweight.  Biologically aware materials. Another area of development is the "lab on a chip" that incorporates rapid biological agent detection. the application of enabling technologies in defence and security products and services will be via enhancing existing products with new materials such as nanomaterials and nanobiomaterials.  Sensors utilising polymer electronics.  Memory materials and fabrics. Materials and Equipment In the short term.  Living organisms as biofoundries and nanomechanical systems. Examples currently under development include nanosensors and the use of synthetically produced biosensors that are many times more sensitive than existing sensors for the detection of a wide range of chemical and biological threats. hazardous environments. human protection.

 Performance enhancements through neuro interaction with prosthetics.  Aerogels.  Nanostructures in electrochemical systems. vehicles and robots.  Lightweight and self-healing armour produced from bio-derived and inspired material. Applications for biotechnology based materials include:  Camouflage – biomaterials with stealth and non-illuminating characteristics. A current example is bomb detection. Other applications of robots incorporating biomechanically inspired technologies include: © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 158 . Naturally.  Enhanced nanostructured energetic materials. Robotics Short term targets for robots in military applications are to reduce the risk of injury or death in dangerous missions.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Explosives and propulsion systems. restricting movement and increasing fatigue. Longer term research includes neurobiologically inspired robots that have control systems based on principles of the nervous system. The applications of enabling technologies has the potential to reduce weight in existing components such as reduced weight of mobile power generation through biological and synthetic photovoltaics and reducing the power requirements of existing products leading to fewer batteries to be carried and disposed of in the battlefield. these new materials will find their way into military and security equipment. particularly in current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan where improvised explosive devices have been used in unprecedented levels.  Nanobiotechnology for use in radiation resistant electronics. Soldiers are currently burdened with carrying large amounts of equipment and weight.  Nano-optical materials in photonics and organic LEDs. Research is also being conducted into the mechanics and biology of flight to be used in the design of software for flight control systems.  Bio-derived and inspired materials for increased mobility of humans.  Synthetically produced enzymes to fight infectious agents and neutralise toxic chemicals. promising advances over current products and altering the way military operations are conducted. Future applications involve improvements to the exoskeleton to allow soldiers to carry heavy loads without fatigue or physical injury and incorporating power generation. batteries and fuel cells. Research into long term applications of robots includes “smart” autonomous robots that incorporate distributed sensors and intelligence.  Biomarkers in combat identification.

In many cases. 8.10. improve resource efficiency and reduce energy costs. that they are not considered in isolation. It is important to note that when assessing the potential benefits that enabling technologies can bring to addressing national challenges.  Better underwater performance. breakthroughs in one area will bring about flow on effects and complimentary benefits to other areas.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Enhanced vehicles to be used to conquer complex terrain better and more efficiently.  Robotic climbers. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 159 . will also benefit climate change issues. however. For example. which subsequently increases competitiveness.  The use of robots in confined spaces and squeezing through cracks. developments in the biofuels have the potential to address energy security issues. Summary Table 16 provides a summary of how the enabling technologies discussed in this paper can contribute to addressing a number of Australia’s major national challenges.

 Biosensors to detect or measure chemical compounds  Pre-treatment for chemicals or fuels to reduce harmful compounds. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation SYNTHETIC BIOLOGY  Harvest Coal bed methane through synthetic microbial digestion  Advances in biotechnology to increase leaching rates.g.   Nanomaterials may provide lighter. eliminate.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Table 16: Contribution of Enabling Technologies to National Challenges Matrix NATIONAL CHALLENGE Mining NANOTECHNOLOGY  Oil and gas sector could use nanosensors to assist in the high throughput detection of uncharted oil and gas reserves. contain. or transform benign products contaminants present in soils. stronger and increased thermal and electrically efficient materials  Nanomaterials: more efficient power plants and enable new energy production systems based on renewable sources  Nanomaterials and nanostructures providing cleaner coal. portable solar cells. BIOTECHNOLOGY  GM plants and microbes for bioremediation of polluted mine sites and wastewater  Biomining will improve environmental and production performance of mines  Bioleaching in copper and gold mining  Biohydrometallurgy to recover metals from sulphide ores  Microbial enhanced oil recovery (MEOR) to increase oil recoverably Climate Change  The potential for nanodevices and engineered nano materials to convert carbon emissions to molecules that can be re-used e.g. water.g.  Organic waste conversion to fuels e. increased tolerance and to improve oil recovery  Biosensors to monitor soil for nutrient quality or environmental degradation  Integrated systems to manage soil nutrients and water for crops and animal farms based on the outputs of the biosensors e. super-fermenting organisms  Bioalcohols: butanol  Photosynthetic algae: synthetic / modified algae  Bio-hydrogen: extracting hydrogen from water  Making electric current from synthetic living Page 160 . fuel cells.  Biofuels can supplement and replace carbon intensive fossil fuels for some applications. or air. sediments. biogas  Integrated energy storage systems  Harnessing biological systems for energy production  Self-powered devices and systems Commercial-in-Confidence  Biofuels: cellulosic ethanol. artificial photosynthesis  Metal oxides for slurry additives  Geoengineering technologies may be able to re-habituate specific environmental ecologies that may be threatened  Nanomaterials used in advanced filtering and other applications for water purification and recycling Energy  GM technology will help agricultural crops better adapt to the effects of climate change. precision agriculture  Biofuels provide clean and renewable fuel sources.  Bioremediation to reduce.

storage and use.  Catalysts for conversion of natural gas © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence cells  Development of crops tailored to bioenergy production with increased oil content or maize and new processes that improve the conversion of biomass to fuel  Bio-mass: more efficient feed-stocks  Bio-remediation: microorganisms to accumulate and/or degrade substances  Environmentally friendly microorganisms to minimise water use and replace chemical fertilisers Page 161 .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 portable energy cells.  Hydrogen production. solid-state lighting. Nanostructured catalysts to improve the efficiency of reforming and gasification in producing hydrogen  Carbon nanotubes: aid in accelerating chemical reactions and catalysis and improving the efficiency of chemical processes  nanostructured organic photovoltaics to reduce costs of PV systems  Aerogels for the use of smart glazing Resource Efficiency  New engineered nanomaterials can substitute or replace rare elements or diminishing raw materials  Nanofabrication can provide new designs that minimise waste material but also promote reuse and efficient lifecycle management  GM plants will reduce resource input requirements in agriculture. smart roofs with reflectivity control and energy-efficient separation membranes.  Bioenzymes will improve efficiency of industrial processes. integrated solar cells.  Biofuel technologies convert waste byproducts into fuel. selfoptimising motor systems. efficient lighting  Nano based metal/ organometallics to improve catalytic converters  Nanomaterials being used to improve storage capacity in batteries  Nanoparticles in fuel cells for enhanced catalytic properties  Ceramic nanopowders to improve fabrication of electrode membranes in fuel cells  Increasing energy efficiency: lightweight materials in transport.

atomic force microscope and drug delivery  Nanoengineered structures for prosthetics  Nanocomposites in integrated diagnostic © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 162  Identifying drug targets.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Development of faster-growing trees for timber. DNA sequencing and nucleic acid detection. nano-arrays  Nanodevices for cancer therapy: silica-coated micelles. dental root implants. pulp. smart implants. ceramic nanoparticles.modified autologous cells to avoid the need for ongoing injections. blood screening.  Nanoparticles to improve sunscreens and cosmetics  Silicon Quantum dots for in-vitro diagnostics. gene expression assay.  Medicines: metabolic engineering. genomic testing. and biofuel production  Replication of tropical growing efficiencies in more arid conditions Health and Wellbeing  Nanomaterials in tissue engineering. orthodontics and endodontics.  Nanosensors: treatment of periodontitis and other oral and systemic diseases.small molecule drug development  Diagnostics . medical imaging  Carbon Nanotubes for scanning probe tip. soft and hard tissue reconstruction using nanfibrous biomimetric membranes. bio-materials.vitro diagnostic tests and molecular genetic based tests  Pharmacogenetics  Medical devices . bioinformatics and microarray technology to better characterise disease  Therapeutics . glucose testing and in vivo radiation monitoring  Nanodentistry: periodontology. smart proteins and programmed cells  Biosensors: collection of quantitative dynamic data in minimally invasive ways  Disease biomarkers for those working on biomedical research . drug delivery. tissue/organ regen. tooth regeneration. improving patient outcomes  New biotechnology tools and platforms will enhance our understanding of disease biology  Improved diagnostic tools will leverage discoveries in epigenetics. dendrimers and cross linked liposomes  Nanodevices that releases drugs in response to over-expression of undesirable proteins. pathogen and virus detection. medical diagnostics. paper. and personally targeted therapeutics  Regenerative medicine using stem cell technology will address previously incurable diseases  RNA based therapeutics will expand the number of ‘druggable’ targets. pharmacogenomics. nanobio. proteomics. efficient. implantology. medical imaging. tailor prescribing practices to the genetic characteristics of patients  Genomic medicine will provide improved patient outcomes. prosthetic dentistry. large-scale screening methods  Vaccines: accelerate the development of vaccines  Personalised Medicine: molecular classification of tumours. respiratory monitoring. genomics. improve drug delivery.

Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 devices  Supramagnetic nanoparticles for use in MRI detection  Identification of biomarkers will help predict disease susceptibility  Enable point-of-care diagnosis as well as the development of personalised medicine  Genetic Nanomedicine for Gene Detection and Gene Delivery  Nanotechnology-Based Regenerative Medicine: Cell Sheet Engineering  Oncology Nanomedicine for Early Diagnosis and Early Treatment in Cancer  Pharmacological Nanomedicine for Drug Delivery and Drug Design  Cardiovascular Nanomedicine for Heart and Vascular Diseases  Neurological Nanomedicine for Neuroscience Research Food Security  Nanoagricultural: agrosensors to monitoring the health of crops and farm animals  Nanosensors for monitoring spoilage bacteria and other indicators in the food industry  High-yield. rice. poultry and aquaculture industries: breeding. peas.  Marker assisted selection to improve the © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 163  Metabolites. disease. sugar beet. . potato. salinity and high temperature resistance for plant feedstocks  Herbicide tolerance and pest resistance for barley. and safflower  Enzymes to improve digestibility and nutrition in animal feed  Plant diagnostics for early diagnostics to identify a plant disease and treat it before it causes significant crop and / or economic damage. propagation and health.  Livestock. peanuts. health products. genetically engineered preservatives flavours and fragrances  Insecticides and pest-resistant varieties of honeybees and diagnostic tests for pathogens that attack honeybee hives. drought.

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accuracy and speed of conventional animal breeding programs  Somatic nuclear transfer cloning National Security  Gold core oligonucleotides for bio-defence  Nanosensors for military and security use for detection of biological and chemical threats  Biotechnology tools and platforms (e.g. DNA sequencing technology) may have applications in biometric security devices  Biological electronic interfaces and implantable RFID tags for monitoring the movement of specific threats  Production of biofuels and bulk and specialty chemicals; enzymes, solvents, amino acids, organic acids, vitamins, antibiotics, and biopolymers  Chemical production: substitute one or more traditional chemical steps; lower temperature and pressure, and milder pH conditions, lower energy inputs, lower waste output and reduced environmental impacts  New biocatalysts and advanced fermentation processes that are faster, less expensive and more versatile  Biobased chemicals for the production of packaging and containers, fabrics and consumer durables.  Ezymes for a range of industrial processes; one-step synthesis of high-value chemicals and plastics using microorganisms in bioreactors; and the production of high energy-density biofuels from sugar cane and cellulosic crops.  Conversion of industry waste in CO2 or water  Bio-surfactants  Processing aids in food manufacturing  Biosecurity: unique tagging of genetic codes

Global Competitiveness

 Nanoscale electronic memory applications  Nanoparticles for performance coatings  Nanowhiskers for moisture wicking and stain resistant apparel  Carbon Nanotubes for polymer additives, carbon composite fillers, electrodes, transistors, sporting goods, super capacitors, efficient electricity and heat conductors.  Advanced optical lithography tools (produce nanoscale features on microelectronic devices)  “Smart” nanomaterials which feature intrinsic properties and added properties  Nanowires in circuitry such as micro/nanofluidic systems

Source: AIC, 2011

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9.0 INFLUENCES AFFECTING THE ADOPTION OF ENABLING TECHNOLOGIES
This section summarises the major themes of this enabling technologies roadmap report. It also highlights major influences affecting the adoption and development of enabling technologies.

9.1. Challenges in the Uptake of Enabling Technologies in Australia
The next decade promises the emergence of revolutionary enabling technologies that have the potential to provide new opportunities, deliver new applications, influence existing

manufacturing practices, develop new products and services, and solve complex societal challenges. However, to obtain significant value from enabling technologies they must first be successfully translated, commercialised and adopted. Therefore, a number of factors have been identified that influence the successful adoption and utilisation of enabling technologies. Figure 20 outlines an integrated model of enabling technologies and the influences determining successful adoption and utilisation. Figure 20: Integrated Enabling Technologies Model

Source: AIC, 2011

The key factors that influence adoption and utilisation of enabling technologies are discussed in the following section.

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9.2. Market-pull Commercialisation
Commercialisation of technologies and scientific discoveries traditionally has involved technology-push approaches, generally through research organisations that have developed the particular technology. Numerous case examples have shown that traditional technology transfer has been a difficult pathway in commercialising new technologies. New concepts in commercialisation that have emerged in recent years involve demand driven “market-pull” strategies. Although the concept of market-pull commercialisation is relatively new, it offers comparatively higher opportunities for successful commercialisation of new technologies because it takes into consideration the existing needs of the market represented by commercial organisations involved in product and services development. Successful commercialisation of enabling technologies therefore will be dependent on fulfilling the needs of the market in developing new products and services or addressing existing problems and challenges. Enabling technologies are currently in an emerging stage of development and integration into other industries. At this point of an emerging sectors life cycle, particularly in a high technology industry, market forces are traditionally a mixture of market pull and technology push. In the early stages, research and technologies breakthroughs necessitate a technology push approach and other industries are educated and informed as to the benefits to their market segments. It is not until this critical mass of education and knowledge is reached that the industry will be market pull driven.

9.3. Absorptive Capacity
The absorptive capacity of an organisation is defined as its ability to recognise, exploit and integrate external knowledge for its own use. 253 A number of factors exist that can effect an organisation’s absorptive capacity and adoption. A firm’s prior related knowledge enables it to recognise valuable new information, assimilate it and apply it to commercial ends. Therefore, a firm with a better developed knowledge base in a particular field will have a higher absorptive capacity for new opportunities. 254 Absorptive capacity allows firms to pursue projects with a higher probability of success due to their superior knowledge. 255

253

Cohen, W. M., & Levinthal, D. A. (1990) Absorptive Capacity: a New Perspective on Learning and Innovation. Administrative Science Quarterly, 35(1 (Special Issue: Technology, Organisations, and Innovation)), 128-152.

Hine, D. and Kapeleris, J. (2006) Innovation and entrepreneurship in biotechnology, an international perspective: Concepts, theories and cases. Edward Elgar Publishers UK.
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254

Deeds, D.L. (2001) The role of R&D intensity, technical development and absorptive capacity in creating entrepreneurial wealth in high technology start-ups, Journal of Engineering and Technology Management, Vol. 18, pp 29-47

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et al (2000) Acquiring External Technology. Strong internal expertise is needed to evaluate value and internal resources needed to exploit it. Cross functional team and objective assessment criteria are used. No. Vol.  Identifying external technology through mechanisms such as searches. As discussed above. networks. financial assistance towards facilities and equipment that researchers need to be internationally competitive. Government Support for Research and Enabling Technologies Government supports and funds research activities as part of its commitment to the development of the highest-quality research that leads to the discovery of new ideas and the advancement of human knowledge through education and knowledge transfer.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 A key aspect of absorptive capacity is the ability to recognise an opportunity arising from new knowledge about technology. Effective management of technology acquisition involves: 256  Understanding technology needs in relation to strategic plans. 9. support for the training and skills development of the next generation of researchers and incentives for talented researchers to collaborate with other researchers nationally and internationally. This takes the form of direct funding for research. brokers and alliances. pp 29-36 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 167 .4. It is a function of technology push and market pull forces as well as the overall general knowledge of emerging technologies such as enabling technologies discussed in this report. Research is supported at 256 Slowinski. absorptive capacity is related to the lifecycle stage of relevant industries. collaboration or an alliance framework. 43.  Developing a technology agreement such as through licensing.  Valuation of the technology which considers costs to further develop and implement the technology.  Evaluation and assessment of technology leads. G. September-October. A firm will be better placed to uptake a new enabling technology when it possesses the absorptive capacity to recognise the potential value created from the exploitation of the new technology in servicing the needs of customers and the market. Technology roadmapping. Research Technology Management. competitive analysis and complementary internal capabilities are important considerations. a customer’s needs. or market trends. 5.  Metrics for measuring success.

National Science Foundation 257 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 168 . is the challenge at the heart of interdisciplinarity. 257 As the sciences and arts emerged half a millennium ago. it was common for scientists to be masters of several fields simultaneously. The integration and convergence of prior disciplines creates new disciplines that develop new technological trajectories. and subsequently become the enabling technologies that support the emergence of new disciplines. and education will produce new convergent technologies and their Roco. particularly with respect to convergence with the ICT industry. sociology. productivity and knowledge outcomes. Biotechnology. The need to master the complexity of combining a number of disciplines. which at the same time are evolving. science. neuroscience.. 9. Convergence of Technologies Convergence of disciplines. The most exciting opportunities for the convergence of nanotechnology. Cognitive science is the study of the mind as an information processor and therefore has a direct correlation with synthetic biology. W. drawing government attention and focus. particularly in nanotechnology.5. As synthetic biology develops the ability to produce sufficiently complex synthetic systems. Convergence leads to technologies that are applicable across a wide range of applications. biotechnology and synthetic biology are the interactions and convergence with the cognitive sciences. innovation and commerce is immense. and Bainbridge. the human brain. This will drive a comprehensive understanding of the structure and behaviour of matter from the nanoscale up to the most complex systems. anthropology. however. subject to the preferences underpinning the prevailing policy settings of the day. The emergence of enabling technologies has been influenced by singular discoveries in a range of fields that when aggregated or integrated offer unique platform capabilities that provide a further and more efficient means to create greater leaps in performance. The sciences have reached a point at which they must unify if they are to continue to advance. (2002) Converging Technologies for Improving Human Performance Nanotechnology. The National Science Foundation commented on the importance of convergence and integration of the emerging scientific disciplines.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 various stages. linguistics. artificial intelligence. The enormous impact and future potential for research. M. Information Technology and Cognitive Science. its interactions with psychology. Today. with varying levels of commitment between discovery and application-based research. has occurred over time as interdisciplinarity increases through enhanced interrelatedness and interdependence of prior disciplines. biotechnology and synthetic biology. philosophy. specialisation means that no one can master more than a tiny fragment of human creativity.

The natural progressions of any of these fields could result in a turning point in the evolution of human society. highly effective communication techniques including brain-to-brain interaction. sustainable and “intelligent” environments including neuro-ergonomics.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 applications in a range of areas such as education. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 169 . This convergence of technologies means that through a coevolutionary process. ageing. through the development of nanotechnology. The convergence of emerging technologies with the cognitive sciences and the current evolution of technical achievement means that improvement of human performance through integration of technologies is becoming increasingly possible. reaching sustainable development using enabling technologies and cognitive science tools. Developments in systems approaches. offers the promise of improving human lives in many ways. the integration of cognitive sciences into emerging technologies will have long term implications to human activity such as working. group interaction. These areas are discussed in detail throughout this report. the existing boundaries between industry sectors become increasingly blurred. medical prostheses. In broad terms. The confluence of technologies that now. it must also be noted that convergence of enabling technologies also brings with it significant issues. According to the National Science Foundation. improving both individual and group creativity. funding requirements and skills development amongst others. defence force applications for the ‘soldier of the future’ and raise challenges for the international sporting industry. For example. mathematics. revolutionary changes in healthcare. biological processes and computation (including general ICT) allow for the understanding of the natural world and cognition in terms of complex. biotechnology and synthetic biology and convergence with the cognitive sciences. This is particularly prevalent in new technologies for studying brain function using nano and synthetic biology techniques. learning. enhancing human capabilities for defence purposes. perfecting humanmachine interfaces including neuromorphic engineering. and ameliorating the physical and cognitive decline that is common to the ageing mind. examples of opportunities includes improving work efficiency and learning. Through this process. hierarchical systems. progress in one area accelerates progress in many others. and human evolution. as well as the more problematic area of human enhancement in general. enhancing individual sensory and cognitive capabilities. However. regulatory changes.

P. 260 259 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 170 . Massachusetts. Perseus Publishing. organisations may have the inclination to seek opportunities outside their organisation and be more receptive to adopting and utilising enabling technologies. Tushman. Administrative Science Quarterly.6. Cambridge. pp.31. and Anderson. (1986) Technological Discontinuities and Organizational Environments. Issue 3. C. Collaboration between Research and Industry Sectors As discussed above. Harvard Business School Press. More recently the concept of disruptive innovation 258 Cooper. not only nationally but also internationally and across industry sectors.7. and increasing the impact of research outcomes in global markets.A. (2001) Winning at New Products: Accelerating the Process from Idea to Launch. Vol. affecting existing processes in an organisation 259 . Third Edition. Collaboration plays a key role in open innovation involving the engagement of external organisations to co-create future opportunities. An extension of this thinking describes innovation as incremental improvements punctuated by discontinuous change (radical innovation) 260 . and O’Reilly. Open innovation is the process by which organisations use both internal and external knowledge to drive and accelerate their internal innovation strategy in order to fulfil existing market needs or to access new market opportunities. Boston. radical or transformational 258 . is one of the key drivers of innovation. the enabling technologies sector is currently in a technology push phase of research and commercialisation.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 9. 9. (1997) Winning Through Innovation: A Practical Guide to Leading Organizational Change and Renewal. enhancing knowledge exchanges. Radical and Transformational Innovation Innovation can be described as incremental.439-465. innovation can also be continuous or discontinuous. However. M. Collaboration between industry and academia is an important driver of national innovation capacity. collaboration amongst different scientific disciplines encourages the exchange of knowledge and ideas that create new opportunities at the intersections of disciplines facilitating convergence and the development of new enabling technologies. Australia is placed at the bottom of Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries when measuring the level of collaboration between industry and the research sector. By encouraging and facilitating an open innovation paradigm. Incremental. R. Establishing networks. Tushman.G.L. M. which means that the collaboration between research and industry sectors is of utmost importance. Additionally. technologies and products that address existing or new markets.

innovation speed refers to the length of time it takes for a product to move from idea to commercialisation 262 . The successful development of new enabling and converging technologies and their applications will predominantly emerge from incremental innovation. Kessler E. however. antecedents. A new business model may require a new value network where interaction occurs with customers. and outcomes. An emerging area of practice is business model innovation which allows firms to enter into new market spaces. The main area in this respect is scalability the ability to replicate findings in the laboratory on larger commercial scales. suppliers and competitors. it is not always the product innovation that creates significant success for a firm. taking an average of eight to twelve years from idea to commercialisation. p. Innovation speed. markets and systems 261 .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 has been described which can have a transformational effect on existing organisations. Harvard Business Review.(1996). and Chakrabarti A. and this is one of the key barriers to successful commercialisation and adoption of enabling technologies. Based on the R&D cycle. Issue2. Limitations exist in the ability to reduce R&D cycles in enabling technologies." The Academy of Management Review 21(4).78. March. (2000) Meeting the Challenge of Disruptive Change. will generally be more successful if market innovation is a key focus.66.8. Firms have brought new products to market by successfully commercialising breakthrough technologies. is a significant challenge to enabling technology based companies. The practical application and commercialisation of enabling technologies to solve existing problems and to develop new products and services. they are comparatively long.H. 9. Business model innovation allows firms to leverage their existing resources. 262 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 171 . 1143-1191. Market innovation rather than product innovation will facilitate better understanding of customer and stakeholder needs thereby facilitating successful adoption and uptake of enabling technologies by the market. Vol. radical and transformational innovation will also have an impact on new developments.K. "Innovation speed: A conceptual model of context. C. However. better understand their markets and to extend their domination into new or adjacent markets. Product Innovation versus Market Innovation Product innovation is generally the focus of breakthrough technology innovations. and Overdorf. While product life cycles in enabling technologies vary in time.M. 261 Christensen. M. a fundamental competitive factor in many industries.

or broader societal issues about the role of technology in society. House of Lords (Select Committee on Science and Technology) (2000). they are often subject to controversy.10. The regulatory environment is an important factor in managing these risks. Taking European Knowledge Society Seriously.htm 264 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 172 .g. specific ethical issues raised. Available at: http://www.parliament. the government supports public awareness and education about enabling technologies. public perception about apparent risk/benefit balance and capability to enforce any regulation. Controversy may be focussed on potential risks to health or environment. Regulatory Environment Any new technologies bring potential risks along with potential benefits.publications. Science and Society.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 9. An important factor influencing uptake of enabling technologies is public attitudes.9. including a dedicated website (techNyou) and a curriculum-linked education resource. e. Organisations that had previous negative experiences or had negative views are less likely to adopt enabling technologies.uk/pa/ld199900/ldselect/ldsctech/38/3802. United Kingdom Parliament. European Commission (2007). when technologies challenge understandings of what it is to be human (see section 9. London. Knowledge of Enabling Technologies The importance of knowledge and education of enabling technologies has been discussed at length in this report. These influence markets. 263 Directorate-General for Research. Decisions about the regulatory environment take into consideration various factors including the impact on innovation. regulatory responses and public policy. 263 There is international recognition of the importance of promoting public awareness of enabling technologies and of democratic engagement with the wider community in decision making about technology development. At times the short-term commercial focus of organisations is in conflict with longer-term technology investments. Economy and Society Directorate. 264 Under the National Enabling Technologies Strategy. Organisations that are well informed of the advantages provided by enabling technologies are more likely to adopt new technologies.12). Given the novelty and disruptive potential of enabling technologies. 9. societal impacts and technology governance. Report of the Expert Group on Science and Governance to the Science. Commercially driven organisations are willing to consider adopting enabling technologies if they address a need in the marketplace and are commercially feasible for the organisation. NETS has also recently developed a community engagement framework (STEP – Science & Technology Engagement Pathways) that seeks to bring members of the wider community into dialogue with those making decisions about enabling technology development. management and future directions. industry confidence.

Products that are perceived as less harmful to humans or the environment are less strictly regulated. plants and the environment. As a result. where the costs of bringing some products to market exceed the financial capacity of small firms.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 The topic of regulations in an emerging industry sector always incites opinions from many different perspectives. GM plant varieties. humidity. An Australian Federal Government review © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 173 . Effects of Regulation on Innovation High regulatory costs can provide a competitive advantage to large firms compared to small or medium sized firms. The de facto moratorium on growing GM plant varieties in Europe is an example of the influence of regulation to alter long-term market structures and future business opportunities. A similar decline in agricultural biotechnology research occurred after several Australian states implemented a moratorium on GM plantings. the type of research that is commercially viable. have small markets because the microorganisms need to be adapted to local temperature. and the costs of research and development. Many environmental applications of industrial biotechnology. animals. This is especially the case in agriculture. and GM microorganisms for use in a closed bioreactor. Regulation and the predictability of the regulatory environment can influence the direction of enabling technology research. Many enabling technologies are regulated to protect humans. such as bioremediation. these products can typically be brought to market relatively quickly compared to products that are highly regulated. These include in vitro diagnostics. Regulation that effectively prohibits the use of a technology can have more damaging effects on innovation. and soil conditions. animal therapeutics. It establishes the guidelines for the safety. efficacy and effectiveness of nanotechnology and biotechnology products. Research to establish environmental and consumer safety is required to meet regulations for biotherapeutics. Regulatory requirements and frameworks are often perceived as either a commercial risk that can sometimes be a hindrance to innovation or present an opportunity that defines the operating guidelines for business to exploit market opportunities. especially when they have relatively small markets. and GM microorganisms intended for open release. High regulatory costs can also impede some types of innovation. nonGM biotech crops. This is particularly relevant for enabling technologies.

and by the private non-profit sector. namely the need to balance risks and benefits with the costs of developing health treatments. thereby reducing risks. 265 Statutory Review of the Gene Technology Act 2000 and the Gene Technology Agreement. However. the lack of a clear regulatory environment results in a cautious approach to new technologies in the early stages of an emerging sector. Regulatory Barriers It is not unusual for a clear regulatory environment to lag technology and this is seen in many industries. by the business sector. As such. All exporters of products face established regulatory environments overseas. Intellectual Property Rights Biotechnology R&D is performed in the public sector (government research institutes and higher education institutes). Experience in the long-established field of drug regulation shows that the balance of risks and benefits can change abruptly as science develops and experience is gained. requiring adjustments to health regulations. The development and commercialisation of GM crops illustrate a complex challenge facing trade diplomacy .11. 265 For health applications of biotechnology.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 concluded that the “moratoria were having negative effects on the agricultural and research sectors”. protect and commercialise from each of these sectors will vary. while an alternative perspective is that they should be more lightly regulated as medical devices. invent. 2006 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 174 . organisational drivers to discover. Businesses which commercialise products and services in biotechnology. and will need to adapt to meet those regulations in order to sell their products or be excluded from potentially very large markets such as those found in the US and Europe. An argument in favour of lighter regulation is that regenerative medicine based on the patient’s own tissues or cells would have a very low rate of adverse immune system reactions. technical developments and high research costs create a different set of regulatory challenges. An example is that GM agricultural crops that are approved as safe in the US are facing significant regulatory hurdles in gaining access to the European Union. 9. One perspective is that these technologies should be regulated as pharmaceuticals. requiring the submission of full clinical trial data. The type of regulatory requirements that could be enforced in the future for regenerative medicine based on stem cell therapies and tissue engineering could also require adjustments to health regulations.the challenge of regulatory regionalism created by social and economic regulatory barriers.

i. the more commercially viable nanotechnology patent portfolios are technically broader in nature. the recent decision found that “isolated 266 White.N.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 nanotechnology and synthetic biology arenas are capital intensive by nature and generally have comparatively long and costly lead times to product development. Adding further to the technology complexity is that a market may not yet exist. the government.Supp.2d 181 (S.D. coatings and cosmetics.e. Cth of Australia. One ramification of such a complex and costly environment is the need for protecting technology investment by the use of patents. 267 Perhaps striking a balance. The knowledge taught in the patent literature is globally disclosed. E. and the public are ‘taught’ how to work the invention and enable further innovation in many related as well as unrelated applications. Intellectual property rights (IPRs) are attractive to business because they create the prospect of recouping their investment by charging others monopoly prices for access to their intellectual capital and preventing others (‘free riders’) from taking away their competitive advantage. Industry. In return. and the intensity of the investment the applicant is willing to make in its protection has been observed. In relation to patenting in the nanotechnology sector. Science & Research. In addition to organisation drivers. Recently in the US. the fields found to have the most commercialisation potential are more chemical in nature. Governments grant IPRs for limited periods to enable recovery of investment and innovation. Thomson Reuters IP Consulting. inks. That is. synthetic biology and nanotechnology. e. emerging technology areas are often highly complex as they can play on multiple technologies and disciplines. (September 2011) Nanotechnology IP Landscaping Analysis. 266 Technically. non-chemical nanotechnologies and nanotechnical applications. stirring public opinion on the ethical rights of patenting “isolated DNA” in the process. despite heavy patent activity and associated R&D activity. and in doing so. would appear to be more immature.g. With regards to human gene patenting. On the other hand.2010) 267 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 175 . The primary purpose of patents is to provide incentives for innovation.. paints. prepared for the Department of Innovation. a Federal Appeals Court has reconsidered the validity of gene-based patents to patentee Myriad Genetics for diagnostic breast cancer tests. vast and is for all to learn from and access at the appropriate time. Association for Molecular Pathology et al v US Patent and Trademark Office et al.Y. a correlation between the technical breadth of an individual patent (and thereby the size of the marketplace to which the patent is relevant). 702 F. ethical-based objections have been raised questioning its eligibility for patent protection. and can perhaps be seen as the reason for the reduction in activity by corporate entities in the last few years.

On the other hand and in support of the view that patent rights inhibit innovation. however diagnostic methods “comparing” or “analysing” DNA sequences. e.g. In recognition of the overall regulatory delays (e. changes in patenting legislation are routinely made in Australia. the Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Raising the Bar) Bill 2011 is seeking to limit patentee’s rights and exempt patent infringement of research and experimental activities. including Australia and the US. 269 Regulation and Legislative Environments Various factors influence the development and adoption of enabling technologies. The very complex nature of the emerging technologies has given rise to its own burdens. Government regulation has long added to the required product development pathway. The multi-disciplinary nature of nanotechnology and biotechnology requires patent expertise to be drawn from several different fields when partnering/collaborating. patent. offer incentives by way of expedited patent examination to assist with the lengthy process. industrial regulations. and more so to human health. patentability of biological materials and other forms of “life”. E. This is most visible with products that are directed to animal health. a number of jurisdictions. broader areas of ethical debate exist that include patenting of non-human genes.. (2009) Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology. patenting. expedited examination via the “patent prosecution highway” can now be requested without incurring extra official fees and ‘green technology’ inventions are considered to be suitable for expedited examination and automatically qualify. The same gene patent debate continues in Australia as the Federal Government is currently considering whether to ban the patenting of biological materials. Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 176 . et al.g. in 2006..Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 DNA” was patentable. health regulation. assigning and 268 269 Cancer Voices Australia & Anor v Myriad Genetics Inc & Ors (Federal Court. A Senate Committee report was in preparation to address this issue. Further to human gene patenting discussed above. NSD643/2010) Parens. In the US. the subject of a proposed amendment to the Australian Patents Act 1990 (Cth) (Patent Amendment – Human Genes and Biological Materials – Bill 2010). There is also corresponding action before the Australian Federal Court 268 with the case set for hearing in February 2012. the “Springboarding for Pharmaceuticals” provisions opened up exploitation of pharmaceuticals patents for the purposes of gaining regulatory (globally) approval. For example. BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes were not. Currently.

Patents and Biotechnology Industry. the creation and use of “thickets” or other patenting strategies provide a legal right in which many Australian researchers rely upon to ‘level the playing field’ globally and provide the requisite protection and business diligence to attract investment for commercialisation purposes. a number of isolated genetic materials covered by a series of patents of related technical nature (core technology) may be required in developing further inventions such as diagnostic tests or pharmaceutical products from which they depend (downstream applications and products). conversely.S Department of Agriculture 270 highlighted two problems in the patenting of synthetic biology research and products. 270 271 Rejeski. for example the sharing of information in ‘patent pools’ by the pharmaceutical industry.. U. http://www. Commercialisation ‘Patent thickets’ have been identified as a specific barrier to commercialisation of enabling technologies. a recent study by the U.gov.alrc. Australian Government. Firstly. Thickets are a consequence of multiple upstream (core technology) patents. while others indicate that in some cases. hamper collaboration and stifle innovation by other researchers. (2011) Synthetic Biology A Trip Around the Neighbourhood. Available at: http://www. Navigating the Patent Thicket: Cross Licenses. to address patent thickets. 273 Recently. the creation of unduly narrow patents may impede subsequent applications because of the complexity of licensing arrangements required to deal with multiple patent owners. D. Many in the field advocate openness and minimal patenting. To address some of this complexity. Patents and Biotechnology Industry.com) now license grouped technologically-based patent portfolios to provide invention rights to users. in an alternative view. Australian Law Reform Commission.gov. ensuring freedom to operate in the technology space and thereby reducing exposure to infringement actions or blocking access to the core technology. the creation of overly broad patents may foster monopolies.au/publications/18-patents-and-biotechnologyindustry/barriers-commercialisation#_ftnref7 273 C Shapiro. Barriers to Commercialisation. For example. This serves to offer users a competitive advantage by leveraging from pre-formed patent rights. Accessed 02/09/2011. Accessed 02/09/2011. Barriers to Commercialisation.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 licensing out new technologies.alrc.S Department of Agriculture. However. Patent Pools. having a strong IP regime that you can control is the best way to protect openness. Available at: http://www. 271 They are described as a dense web of overlapping IPRs that organisations must ‘hack’ their way through in order to commercialise new technology 272 .intellectualventures. Australian Law Reform Commission.au/publications/18-patents-and-biotechnologyindustry/barriers-commercialisation#_ftnref7 272 Australian Government. alternatives to conventional patenting arrangements are being utilised. As an example. commercial entities (for example. 1-2. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 177 . and. and Standard-Setting (2001).

99 Australian Government. Living organisms are difficult to describe and often impossible to duplicate from a written patent description.g. 274 Due to the increased commercialisation of research results. unanswered questions as to how university technology transfer offices (TTOs) are developed and how they operate. (1998) Managing Genetic Material to Protect Intellectual Property Rights. Moreover.  In relation to public sector research. the sharing of genetic materials within the research community is important for the progress of research and development. S. Australian Law Reform Commission (2004) Genes and Ingenuity: Gene patenting and human health. there are a range of unresolved patent issues that are anticipated to have a major impact in shaping the future of synthetic biology (e. and is particularly so for disciplines which play on multiple technologies such as synthetic biology. Concern around how these databases might operate. Journal of Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology 95. how prior art is applied and nonobviousness tests). the following concerns have been raised: 276  Patents: the world of patents is highly complex. patentability. At issue is striking a balance between the need to appropriately articulate the scope of the work. 274 Jong. there is an increasing decoupling of design from manufacturers and processes. the technical description and the limitations of use to adequately protect intellectual property and the drive to streamline the increasing volume of material transfer agreements (MTA’s) required..  Interaction and bundling of IP rights: design rights and how they apply to bundled technologies have been raised as a potential issue  Database operations: information and materials arising from synthetic biology research are currently being placed in registries or other databases. Cypress R.  Copyright: copyright protects originality and expression. the need for formalise arrangements which govern the transfer of biological or other research materials from the owner or authorised licensee to a third party for internal research purposes has grown significantly. (Updated 2010) 275 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 178 .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 In relation to biotechnology in general. In synthetic biology. The use of model or templated MTAs to streamline this process has led to discrepancies involving patent ownership and reach-through claims to subsequent inventions.. 275 Related to patenting synthetic biology in particular. for example in isolation or integrated has been raised. The concern is that this may increase the likelihood of copyright issues.

Human biotechnology techniques. Use of these technologies also requires consideration from an overall society and community perspective. are highly profit-driven. delivering personalised services to those who can afford them. the development of a wide variety of products and technologies. Ethical debate is particularly important in relation to the use of technology for human enhancement. for instance. where or why we should stop?” These arguments logically extend to non-genomic applications of human enhancement. or the propensity to develop certain diseases. Biotechnology breakthroughs in this area. Cloning and synthetic biology techniques could allow fast reproduction of these desirable traits. A. 9. Ethical Considerations The perceived potential of enabling technologies will drive.12. allowing scientists to eliminate those that carry undesirable traits. including how we can or should change ourselves and our environments. These technological advances are surrounded by ethical issues that need to be addressed as the industry develops. like genetic engineering. and has driven.1. Oxford University Press.12. ( 2011). including the human-machine interface.. Human Enhancement There are potentially significant impacts that can arise from the use of enabling technologies to enhance human life. for example the socioeconomy in which technological applications are developed and marketed. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 179 . is currently a hotly debated topic with a wide variety of opinions. genomic. can screen fertilised human eggs for specific traits. 277 Developments in genetic. and cloning. Concerns around human enhancement are usually summarised by considering the question: “Once we set off on the project of human enhancement. and the ensuing political implications. particularly through genetic means. The topic of bioethics and the associated arguments surrounding human enhancement. such as gender. genetic screening. and reproductive technologies have raised many ethical and moral questions. Beyond Humanity? The ethics of Biomedical Enhancement. Genetic screening also allows insurance agencies the chance to identify and discriminate against people predisposed toward certain illnesses. 277 Buchanan.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 9.

. physical and emotional capabilities. C. The US Department of Commerce and National Science Foundation’s report. Information Technology and Cognitive Science. woven into clothes. informatics and nanotechnology (GRIN technologies) so that machines will increasingly be able to behave like living things and that living things will be increasingly enhanced by machines. natural resources and the like  Machines and structures of all kinds. robotics.. and the dramatic extension of the lifespan. National Science Foundation Ostman. and Bainbridge. potential hazards and information of interest about local businesses. including the ability to adapt to changing situations. high energy efficiency and environmental friendliness  Formal education will be transformed by an understanding of the physical world from the nanoscale through the cosmic scale. ‘Converging Technologies for Improving Human Performance’ 278 predicts that over the next 10 to 20 years:  Direct connections between the human brain and machines will transform work in factories. art forms and modes of interaction between people  Wearable sensors will enhance every person’s awareness of his or her health condition. Institute for Global Futures 279 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 180 . Biotechnology. the enhancement of human intellectual. and can be expected to be taken up by Defense Forces around the world as nations seek to ensure their own competitive advantage in terms of national security. (2002) Converging Technologies for Improving Human Performance Nanotechnology. M. and 278 Roco. Examples include:  The Bioinspired Dynamic Robotics program.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 Convergence of GRIN Technologies Due to the increasing rate of innovation in the new enabling technologies. will be constructed of materials that have exactly the desired properties. environment. GRIN technologies are also being explored by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) 279 . ensure military superiority and enable new sports. (2010) Visions of the Future: Impacts of Nanotechnology on National Defense. W. mimicking the ability of geckos to walk up vertical walls and hang from ceilings  The Mesoscopic Integrated Conformal Electronics program. The use of GRIN technologies could result in. control automobiles. for example printing electronic circuits on the frames of eyeglasses and helmets. for example. futurists are predicting that we are approaching a point of convergence between genetics. the elimination of disease and suffering. chemical pollutants. from homes to aircraft.

an absence of genetic disease and more talent in visual and performing arts. beings whose basic capacities so radically exceed those of present humans as to no longer be unambiguously human by our current standards. June 2002 © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 181 . stronger skeletons. as far back as 2002. 280 280 National Science Foundation. and allow us to have better memory. and potential enhancement of the human mind. robotic information and nanotechnologies convey for economic. more muscle mass. infirmity. These applications demonstrate the more radical approach to the possibilities opened up by GRIN technologies and suggests the possibility of transitioning to an engineered evolution of posthumans. They can expect to be explored initially in the areas of competitive sport and defense. medical. mental illness and biological cravings.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 attaching them to insects. batteries and solar cells  The Biological Input/Output Systems program. and organ and joint degeneration. This drive to transhumanism involves assumptions about:  The undeniable competitive advantages that the genetic. cells that do not age. reporting the presence of chemical or biological particles  The Brain-Machine Interface program. and extending this to antennas. calling for highest priority to be given to the ‘Human Cognome Project’. for example. injury. renewable organs. functions. putting wireless modems into people’s skulls. better immune systems. the ability to speak many languages. increased ability to process vast amounts of information quickly. for example allowing plants. microbes and small animals to serve as remote sentinels. diseases of ageing. metabolism and allow us to become designers of our own evolution  That the GRIN technologies will allow us to eliminate pain. One example of this was the recommendation of a US National Science Foundation report. a multidisciplinary effort to understand the structure. educational. but are likely to be exploited by individuals seeking a competitive advantage in cognitive and physical human performance. fuel cells. military or artistic reasons  That the GRIN technologies will enable the augmentation of cognition. Many of the technologies that are being identified as supporting human enhancement are those initially developed to overcome genetically-based diseases and disabilities. ‘Converging Technologies for improving Human Performance’.

Nanotechnolgoy and the Challenges of Equity. reliable energy. Social Implications Nanotechnologies may provide new solutions for developing countries that lack access to basic services. Equality and Development Springer © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 182 . health care. and that any benefits associated with nanotechnology will only reach affluent nations. and Wetmore . concerns are frequently raised that the benefits of nanotechnology will not be evenly distributed. such as safe water. J. coffee and tea) by developments in nanotechnology.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 9. producers in developing countries could be disadvantaged by the replacement of natural products (including rubber. Their substitution with industrial nano-products could negatively impact the economies of developing countries. However.2. Furthermore.. 281 281 Cozzens. Other societal risks from nanotechnology include the possibility of military applications (implants and other means for soldier enhancement) as well as enhanced surveillance capabilities through nano-sensors.12. and education. (2010). Ethical debates in this sphere concentrate on the “need” and “want” of using machines to enhance human performance. S.. cotton.

0 LIST OF ACRONYMS  Bio-SG – Bio-synthetic gas  BtL – Biomass-to-liquids  CAGR – Compound Annual Growth Rate  CDR .Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011 10. © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 183 .Human Embryonic Stem Cells  Horizon 1 – technologies currently available  Horizon 2 – technologies currently under development with expected commercialisation within the next decade  Horizon 3 – Long term (greater than 20 years) technologies and applications  HPLC – High Performance Liquid Chromatography  HVO – Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil  IB – Industrial Biotechnology  ICT – Information and Communication Technology  IPR – Intellectual Property Rights  iPS – Induced Pluripotent Stem  IVF – in vitro Fertilisation  Manufactured nanomaterials – “nanomaterial intentionally produced for commercial purposes to have specific properties or specific composition”.Deoxyribonucleic Acid  dsRNA – double stranded RNA  ESF – European Science Foundation  ETRM – Enabling Technologies Road Map  GFC – Global Financial Crisis  GM – Genetically Modified  GMO – Genetically Modified Organisms  HESC . This generic term is inclusive of nanoobject and nanostructured material.  miRNA – micro RNA  MRI – Magnetic Resonance Imaging  MTA – Material Transfer Agreements  Nanomaterial – “material with any external dimension in the nanoscale or having internal structure or surface structure in the nanoscale”.Carbon Dioxide Removal  CMP – Chemical Mechanical Polishing  CRC – Cooperative Research Centre  DNA .

small interfering RNA  SME – Small and Medium Sized Enterprises  SRM . two or three external dimensions at the nanoscale”. Properties that are not extrapolations from a larger size will typically.Enabling Technologies Roadmap Study December 2011  Nano-object – “material with one.  NETS – Australian National Enabling Technologies Strategy  OECD – Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development  PGD – Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis  R&D – Research and Development  rDNA – Recombinant DNA  RNA – Ribonucleic Acid  RNAi – RNA Interference  SCID – Severe Combined Immunodeficiency Disease  SCNT – Somatic Cell Nuclear Transfer  siRNA . This is a generic term for all discrete nanoscale objects. For such properties the size limits are considered approximate.  Nanoscale – “the size range from approximately 1 nm to 100 nm”.Solar Radiation Management  Technical Recession – two consecutive quarters of negative economic growth as measured by a country's GDP  TTO – Technology Transfer Offices  US – United States of America  USD – US Dollars  UV – Ultraviolet © Australian Institute for Commercialisation Commercial-in-Confidence Page 184 . be exhibited in this size range. but not exclusively.

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