The professional field of biotechnology combines classical biology with technical methods for research and development of solutions to problems. This makes the field of work very wide-ranging and varied. In addition to research in the laboratory, biotechnologists are also needed in the agricultural sector, providing both a practical and theoretical career field.
What does biotechnology deal with?
Biotechnology belongs to the life sciences and combines classical topics from biology with chemistry and engineering. In principle, biotechnology is about the usability of biological, chemical and technical processes to solve biological problems. Since both engineering and chemistry play a major role, the technical part is similar to materials science and process engineering and also consists to a large extent of physical and mathematical processes. In times of digitalization and the complex analysis of data, computer science and the handling of control devices also play a decisive role.
In biotechnology, however, one is not only concerned with technical problems, but also with the food industry, pharmacy and medicine.
What specialties can be pursued within biotechnology?
In general, biotechnology is divided into three areas: red, white and green biotechnology.
Red biotechnology is concerned with medicine and thus also with pharmacy. Specifically, research is concerned with improving diagnostics and cures for diseases. Modern genetic engineering plays a central role in achieving these goals, as it can be used to modify cells. Due to the broad field of work, this area is one of the largest within the applied biosciences.
White biotechnology is concerned with industrial problems. The primary aim is to manufacture products such as cleaning agents, fuels and other chemicals without unnecessarily polluting the environment. For example, bioethanol is produced from the fermentation of various raw materials as a substitute for fossil fuels. This bioethanol can then be blended with conventional gasoline or used entirely as a substitute for conventional gasoline.
Green biotechnology is concerned with utilization in agriculture, i.e. with biotechnological processes in the agricultural sector. As in red biotechnology, researchers take advantage of modern genetic engineering to make harvests more productive or to influence the characteristics such as taste and size of fruits and vegetables. Crops are made more productive by making them less susceptible to environmental extremes such as heat and cold.
What prerequisites should you have if you want to become a biotechnologist?
As mentioned, biotechnology consists of the two subfields of biology and chemical engineering, so there should be a strong interest and understanding of both technical and biological processes. It is also important that mathematical skills are mastered to the extent that data can be evaluated and both physical and chemical problems can be solved. As is generally the case in engineering, creativity and ambition are required to solve complex problems.
At this point we would like to mention the Biotechnology Company lino Biotech GmbH. Here there are also exciting jobs in the field of biotechnology.
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