Towards laboratory automation

Biofoundries are facilities that automate current manual processes in molecular biology, bioengineering and synthetic biology. This leads to more rigorous and reproducible results. Since developing a biofoundry can be expensive and time-consuming, we present a survey of solutions and limitations.


An automated way for implementing genetic and molecular designs will help researchers move away from trial and error and embrace more formal processes. More samples, more precision at building, more rigorous characterizations and higher control over protocols are responsible for a paradigm-shift in synthetic biology and bioengineering. However, biofoundries are expensive facilities, since there are multiple technology available. We present here a number of techniques, their advantages and limitations. We provide information that we believe useful for starting building a biofoundry. Each laboratory or research center has different targeted applications to deliver and fundamental research questions to answer. Based on them, the technological solutions for building a biofoundry can differ. The risks demand taking informed decision before committing to building such facilities.


Original Paper:

Tellechea-Luzardo, J., Otero-Muras, I., Goñi-Moreno, A., Carbonell, P. 2022. Fast biofoundries: coping with the challenges of biomanufacturing. Trends in Biotechnology. DOI: 10.1016/j.tibtech.2021.12.006