Updated on 21 June 2012
Another company AgActive, which is based in Australia, is working on bringing some exciting advances in the nanotechnology industry to the public. One of its technology, Silversure, allows minute particles (nano-particles) of pure silver to be embedded in plastics and fabrics making them resistant to bacteria, virus and fungus. The company has launched anti-bacterial products, such as bedsheets, towels and socks, using this technology. The products are highly effective against foot odor.
Biomimetics Group, also based in Australia, has developed an innovative enabling technology to coat bone-like nanohydroxyapatite for the production of unique synthetic bone graft material that have increased superiority in bioactivity, strength-controlled solubility and drug delivery over similar products already in the market. It is a platform technology with a wide range of applications in nanotechnology industry.
Wuhan Huali Environmental Technology, a high-tech enterprise from China, has been involved in environment protection by engaging in research and industrialization promotion of biodegradable materials. The multi-purpose bio-based and biodegradable materials produced by Huali can be used to replace petroleum-based plastic for application in many areas such as industry, pharmacy, food, electronics packaging, tableware, kitchenware, toys and flower pots. The company produces about 40,000 tons of bio-based and biodegradable materials in a year.
Besides these companies that are doing path-breaking work in integrating biotechnology in everyday life, there are others such as Zhejiang Hangzhou Xinfu Pharmaceutical that has built the world's largest continuous and closed PBS production line with an annual capacity of 20,000 tons. Another Chinese company, Zhejiang Hisun Biomaterials, ranks third in terms of PLA industrial capacity in the world with the annual output of 5,000 tons. Anqing Hexing Chemical, China's first large-scale PBS enterprise, has an annual capacity of 10,000 tons.
Nutraceuticals is another promising field where application of biotechnology is addressing problems of hunger and lack of nutritional food in emerging countries. Parry Nutraceuticals from India has developed two health supplements, Spirulina and Natural Beta carotene, that meet stringent world health standards using microalgal biotechnology. There are many companies in this space across the world that are using biotechnology applications to produce foods that provide functions beyond the basic nutrients they contain. These functional foods or nutraceuticals have become increasingly important to consumers who are interested in health benefits of functional foods for prevention of illness and chronic conditions.
The applications of biotechnology are so broad, and the advantages so compelling, that virtually every industry is using it t prove its offerings. Developments are underway in diverse areas where biotechnology is enabling industries to make new or better products, often with greater speed, efficiency and flexibility.