As most of you probably know, the BIOROBOOST project began almost three years ago and, since then, we have had the chance to discuss standards in synthetic biology (SB) with many experts in the field and from different perspectives: from a more technical point of view (metrology, chassis), to the social connexion of standards. We have now condensed, in the form of a white book, all the work performed throughout the project and, more importantly, we have summarized the conclusions drawn from all the endless discussions that we have been very lucky to engage in.
“Standards in Synthetic Biology: state-of-the-art and recommendations for policy makers” is a white book that includes many specific recommendations for policy makers to foster standardisation in SB, which might in fact be condensed in a very simple one: promote consensus.
The book is divided into four parts:
- Introduction. This section focuses on standards and the industry, the state-of-the-art and the identification of the challenges ahead.
- Technical core. This part focuses on standards in metrology, chassis (both bacterial and yeast), and other eukaryotic systems.
- The social connexion. In this part the existence of standards as social constructs is explored, as well as the human dimension of standardisation cultures. Finally, standards in biosafety and biosecurity are assessed.
- Final conclusions, recommendations and beyond.
All in all, SB will benefit from the standardisation of biological parts, measurements, procedures and from the development of a defined and small number of biological chassis that will ease the industrial translation of the scientific developments. Standards in biology will only be a reality from a crosstalk among all keyplayers involved.