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Synthetic Biology – Metabolic Engineering

Overview of attention for book
Attention for Chapter 14: Xenobiology: State-of-the-Art, Ethics, and Philosophy of New-to-Nature Organisms
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • Among the highest-scoring outputs from this source (#24 of 186)
  • Good Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (72nd percentile)

Mentioned by

4 tweeters
1 Facebook page
1 Wikipedia page


7 Dimensions

Readers on

26 Mendeley
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Chapter title
Xenobiology: State-of-the-Art, Ethics, and Philosophy of New-to-Nature Organisms
Chapter number 14
Book title
Advances in Biochemical Engineering/Biotechnology
Published in
Advances in biochemical engineering biotechnology, June 2017
DOI 10.1007/10_2016_14
Pubmed ID
Book ISBNs
978-3-31-955317-7, 978-3-31-955318-4

Markus Schmidt, Lei Pei, Nediljko Budisa


The basic chemical constitution of all living organisms in the context of carbon-based chemistry consists of a limited number of small molecules and polymers. Until the twenty-first century, biology was mainly an analytical science and has now reached a point where it merges with engineering science, paving the way for synthetic biology. One of the objectives of synthetic biology is to try to change the chemical compositions of living cells, that is, to create an artificial biological diversity, which in turn fosters a new sub-field of synthetic biology, xenobiology. In particular, the genetic code in living systems is based on highly standardized chemistry composed of the same "letters" or nucleotides as informational polymers (DNA, RNA) and the 20 amino acids which serve as basic building blocks for proteins. The universality of the genetic code enables not only vertical gene transfer within the same species but also horizontal gene transfer across biological taxa, which require a high degree of standardization and interconnectivity. Although some minor alterations of the standard genetic code are found in nature (e.g., proteins containing non-conical amino acids exist in nature, and some organisms use alternated coding systems), all structurally deep chemistry changes within living systems are generally lethal, making the creation of artificial biological system an extremely difficult challenge.In this context, one of the great challenges for bioscience is the development of a strategy for expanding the standard basic chemical repertoire of living cells. Attempts to alter the meaning of the genetic information stored in DNA as an informational polymer by changing the chemistry of the polymer (i.e., xeno-nucleic acids) or by changes in the genetic code have already yielded successful results. In the future this should enable the partial or full redirection of the biological information flow to generate "new" version(s) of the genetic code derived from the "old" biological world.In addition to the scientific challenges, the attempt to increase biochemical diversity also raises important ethical and philosophical issues. Although promotors of this branch of synthetic biology highlight the many potential applications to come (e.g., novel tools for diagnostics and fighting infection diseases), such developments could also bring risks affecting social, political, and other structures of nearly all societies.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 4 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 26 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 26 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Bachelor 7 27%
Student > Master 4 15%
Student > Ph. D. Student 3 12%
Researcher 2 8%
Student > Postgraduate 2 8%
Other 5 19%
Unknown 3 12%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 12 46%
Medicine and Dentistry 2 8%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 2 8%
Environmental Science 1 4%
Social Sciences 1 4%
Other 2 8%
Unknown 6 23%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 5. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 20 November 2017.
All research outputs
of 12,167,359 outputs
Outputs from Advances in biochemical engineering biotechnology
of 186 outputs
Outputs of similar age
of 271,612 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Advances in biochemical engineering biotechnology
of 1 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 12,167,359 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done well and is in the 76th percentile: it's in the top 25% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 186 research outputs from this source. They receive a mean Attention Score of 2.2. This one has done well, scoring higher than 87% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 271,612 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 72% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 1 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has scored higher than all of them