African Journal of Biotechnology
African Journal of Biotechnology Vol. 2 (12), pp. 477, December 2003
ISSN 1684-5315 © 2003 Academic Journals
innovation and its derivative benefits have had profound implications to
humanity within the last century. The exciting discipline of biotechnology
has drawn the interests of traditional biologists, biochemists,
microbiologists, medical and agricultural scientists into applying
mathematical and engineering models to understanding biology. Furthermore,
several scientists in the exact sciences of mathematics, physics, and
chemistry have begun to use system approaches to unravel the mystery and
complexity of biology. And from the side, diagnostic, biopharmaceutical,
biochemical and agricultural industries are rapidly drawing from and
applying the research results of biotechnology. Moreover new industries
relying on genomics are springing up daily to challenge the way things
have been done. The final results may be several years away, but
biotechnology will experience a revolution like none before in the life
sciences and will affect every facet of our lives, from crop improvement
to commerce, and drugs to sustainable development.
of the most important and challenging problems of modern science require a
multidisciplinary and an integrative approach. Working in areas that fall
between the standard disciplines requires that barriers be broken down.
Modern biotechnologies have established mechanisms to enable integrative
research to develop. Even large companies, subsidiaries and joint
ventures, universities, research organizations, small companies and
startups are starting to interact in non-traditional ways.
revolutionary advances in genomic sequencing has opened the way for a
deepened understanding of the organization of genomes and the way in which
variations in the DNA of individuals influence their phenotypes. The
fundamental goal of cell biology is to understand physiology in terms of
the information encoded in the cell’s genome. Molecular biology on the
other hand provides a detailed description of the components of biological
networks, and the organizational principles of these networks are becoming
increasingly apparent. Therefore, the major challenge facing human
biologists in the 21st century is in identifying how variations in the
human genome contribute to the onset and progression of common disorders
which have both genetic and environmental determinants.
In this first special issue of the African Journal of Biotechnology, there are reviews and perspectives by specialists with timely information on biotechnology issues in diverse fields including industrial ecology, in vitro culture techniques, transgenic technology, genetic conservation, molecular diagnostics and biopharmaceuticals. The challenge for Africa is two-fold. There is the urgent need to be competent in the application of these innovative researches in industries and to teach the necessary skills to the next generation of scientists. This will require a scheme to lure back skilled African researchers from the western world to the universities and private sector in order to facilitate biotechnology education and industrialization.
Tonukari1, J.K. Ikea2, and G. Ude3
African Journal of Biotechnology
Livestock Research Institute, P.O. Box 30709, Nairobi, Kenya. E-mail: email@example.com.
Plant Industry, G.P.O.Box 1600,Canberra, ACT, 2601, Australia. E-mail: Joe.Ikea@csiro.au.
of Natural Sciences, Crawford Building, Rm 003A, Bowie State University,
14000 Jericho Park
Road, Bowie, MD 20715, USA. Tel: (301) 860-3347. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.