He Xinghui (Reporter from Science and Technology Daily)
Synthetic biology is regarded as the "third biotechnology revolution", and it is the most rapidly developing frontier science in recent years. It has attracted tremendous attention because of the huge industrial opportunities. Recently, after the fourth round of investment, Beijing Tidetron Bioworks Technology Co., Ltd. a dark horse of the industry, spurred the acceleration of the mass production of multi-substances in the field of synthetic biology in China.
It is known that synthetic biology, which can be applied in designing, changing and even re-synthesizing cells, is a cross-border frontier science integrating engineering, computer science, gene editing and gene sequencing. It has many application. It can provide more possibilities in solving the problems of human energy shortage, environmental pollution, medical health, food shortage and so on. For example, insulin drugs which diabetics need every day, once were extracted from islet cells of cattle and pigs, but now they are all produced by genetic engineering. At present, many provinces have clearly proposed plans and brought forward opinions about synthetic biology in the "14th Five-Year Plan" of scientific and technological innovation to lay out the industrial ecology first. However, the development of synthetic bio-industry is not a smooth road, because from gene editing to industrial cultivation to transformation and application, there are extremely high technical barriers and many problems to be overcome.
“The so-called multi-substances mass production is the large-scale production of various substances.” explained by Jianzhong Liu, professor of School of Life Sciences, Sun Yat-Sen University and doctoral supervisor. At present, most domestic synthetic biology companies are at the stage of R&D, and have not yet achieved large-scale production, and a few enterprises have only achieved large-scale production of single product.
Zhiqian Zhang, a Generation-Z, is the founder of Beijing Bioworks Technology Co., Ltd. He studied clinical medicine in Zhongshan School of Medicine, SYSU. In 2017, he rented a laboratory outside the school with several doctors with the belief in the "biological age" and set up R&D teams with the goal of "bio-manufacturing and mass production". In 2021, Zhiqian Zhang led the team to take the lead in mass production of various substances in synthetic biology globally, and completed four rounds of financing within 10 months over $100 million. His company has achieved positive profit. At present, the financing channel is temporarily closed.