Synthetic Biology Industry is Rising Rapidly Up to USD 80.17 Bn by 2033

The global synthetic biology market size was worth around USD 14.09 billion in 2024 and is predicted to grow around USD 80.17 billion by 2033 with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of roughly 18.99% between 2024 and 2033 According to a new report by Nova One Advisor.

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The presence of government and private funding to support research in vaccines and a strong synthetic biologic-based product pipeline in clinical trials are the key driving factors for the market. Synthetic biology processes provide crucial advantages for producing antigen and diagnostic reagents for disease identification, accelerating the speed of vaccine development, and improving overall vaccine performance and yield.

Furthermore, support from government agencies and the presence of several programs are likely to boost the market growth. For instance, in the U.S., COVID-19 vaccine R&D, manufacture, regulation, and purchase have been highly supported by collaboration between federal agencies, including the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), DOD, FDA, and others (formerly OWS).

Other factors such as expanding demand in industries such as textiles and nutrition are also contributing to the market growth. Several optimal food production processes have been identified with the help of synthetic biology. In addition, synthetic biology is predicted to aid in the generation of higher agricultural yields and pest control development. It is expected to help in the production of better food yield and pest control management.

The COVID-19 pandemic is anticipated to positively impact market growth. Synthetic biology has been highlighted as a means to accelerate vaccine development by the National Institute of Health in the U.S. Therefore, synthetic biology labs and companies have been actively utilizing this technology to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the usage of these technologies is projected to increase during the outbreak.

The growing demand for personalized medicine is expected to majorly drive market growth during the coming years. The use of engineered novel proteins for use as therapeutics has demonstrated synthetic biology in the medical segment. These proteins are designed with some modified protein structure to get the desirable properties required for the treatment. For instance, researchers are developing a therapeutic enzyme candidate that is GI-stable and can be given via oral route to treat Phenylketonuria (PKU).

On the other hand, synthetic biology has raised a few concerns regarding biosecurity and biosafety. Exposure to these products may cause unknown hazards to public health and the environment. To prevent such issues, countries of Europe, the Americas, and Asia have formulated policies to manage the application of synthetic biology techniques in basic & applied research.

Synthetic Biology Market Report Highlights

  • By technology, the PCR segment held the highest market share of 27.29% in 2023. This is attributed to the accelerated development in modern life science, with PCR technology being widely employed in numerous fields of medical research, virus detection, and the food & beverage industry.
  • The genome-editing segment is expected to grow steadily during the forecast period. It enables researchers to modify the DNA of various organisms, including plants, bacteria, and animals, and their demand is expected to skyrocket in the coming years.
  • By product, Oligonucleotide and Synthetic DNA is anticipated to have the larger market share in 2033. The falling price of synthesis and increasing requirement for synthetic DNA, RNA, and genes that are employed in numerous applications contribute to the segment growth.
  • By application, the healthcare segment held a larger global market share. This is attributed to an increase in drug screening and discovery. Moreover, the use of synthetic biology can reduce the cost of drug discovery and propel market growth.
  • By end-user, the biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies segment captured the highest revenue share of 55.0% in 2023, owing to the growing availability of modern research facilities, favourable legislation, and government assistance and funding.
  • North America dominated the regional market with a share of 45.0% in 2023, due to the presence of high R&D investment, the availability of technologically advanced healthcare research frameworks, and the development of the synthetic biology market in the region.
  • The Asia Pacific is expected to witness considerable growth in the future owing to the rising development of personalized treatment and the presence of key players.

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What is the difference between synthetic biology and systems biology? How does genetic engineering fit in?

Systems biology studies complex natural biological systems as integrated wholes, using tools of modeling, simulation, and comparison to experiment. Synthetic biology studies how to build artificial biological systems, using many of the same tools and experimental techniques. The focus is often on taking parts of natural biological systems, characterizing and simplifying them, and using them as components of an engineered biological system.

Genetic engineering usually involves the transfer of individual genes from one microbe or cell to another; synthetic biology envisions the assembly of novel microbial genomes from a set of standardized genetic parts that are then inserted into a microbe or cell.

What are some goals of synthetic biology?

Synthetic biologists are working to develop:

  • Standardized biological parts -- identify and catalog standardized genomic parts that can be used (and synthesized quickly) to build novel biological systems;
  • Applied protein design -- re-design existing biological parts and expand the set of natural protein functions for new processes;
  •  Natural product synthesis -- engineer microbes to produce all of the necessary enzymes and biological functions to perform complex multistep production of natural products; and
  • Synthetic genomics -- design and construct a ‘simple’ genome for a natural bacterium.

Synthetic biology 2020–2033: six commercially-available products that are changing our world

Synthetic biology will transform how we grow food, what we eat, and where we source materials and medicines. Here I have selected six products that are now on the market, highlighting the underlying technologies and projecting forward to the future that can be expected over the next 13 years.

“The time has come for synthetic biologists to develop more real-world applications […] the field has had its hype phase, now it needs to deliver.” So concluded an infamous article in 2010. Early research struggled to design cells and physically build DNA with pre-2010 projects often failing due to uncertainty and variability. Since then, rapid technological advances occurred that are well-reviewed in this series of commentaries. Products from synthetic biology are rapidly permeating society and by 2030, it is highly likely that you will have eaten, worn, used or been treated with one.

While there are many biotechnology, pharmaceutical and agriculture companies, I selected those products that best highlight the application of synthetic biology tools developed 2000–2020 and are available now or by early 2021. The first three represent chemicals produced by engineered cells or enzymes (leghemoglobin, sitgaliptin, diamines) that are isolated and purified For the second three, the products are the engineered cells themselves (engineered bacteria, CAR-Ts, genome edited soy). The development of these was enabled by advances in metabolic engineering, directed evolution (awarded the 2018 Nobel Prize), automated strain engineering, metagenomic discovery, gene circuit design, and genome editing (awarded the 2020 Nobel Prize)

What else does the future hold?

A futurist animation envisioned people flying in bee-copters, trees that grow into houses and squid-like living spaceships. This might be hyperbole, but I also see it as a way to depict the emergence of biology-derived components across society: insect materials in aerospace, the toxic glues in architectural materials replaced with mycelia and NASA turning to synthetic biology to produce food and medicine during long space travel. The next decade will see more products that derive their superior performance and affordability from engineered biology. Already, the field is having an impact. The products described here total ~$2 billion in annual sales, and the contribution from non-medical applications will grow steadily. We are the cusp of a deluge of new innovations; in 2030, writing a commentary such as this one could require reviewing hundreds, if not thousands, of products.

With population increases and more products being derived from fermentation, sugar will become a less viable feedstock to make consumer goods. Over the next decades, new microbial chasses will need to be developed that can derive carbon from alternative sources, such as plastic waste, or CO2 from the atmosphere either directly or by coupling to an inorganic “artificial leaf”. Fresh water is also a limited resource that is heavily used in fermentation and halophilic chases could be developed that grow in bioreactors containing ocean water. Cell-free manufacturing offers the potential to reduce the water usage, physical footprint and cellular uncertainty.

After 2033, products will shift to systems, where cells are designed to work together or be integrated into non-living materials or electronics. In agriculture, functions could be distributed across the engineered plant and bacteria symbioses designed to interlock and communicate with each other and with UAVs, receiving information and sending signals to control gene expression in response. The burger patty of the future may be grown using consortia of bacteria, fungi, and livestock cells, similar to yoghurt or cheese, that work together to build tactile structures and synthesize molecules for nutrition, flavor and fragrance. Architectural materials, reminiscent of Singapore’s living buildings, could be embedded with living engineered cells that provide responsive functions, such as self-healing or to clear air pollution.

Segments Insights:

Technology Insights

The PCR segment held the highest market share of 27.29% in 2023 and the trend is expected to continue throughout the forecast period. Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) has emerged as one of the key technologies for the detection and analysis of specific gene sequences. The real-time PCR assays provide high sensitivity and specificity, making it the go-to method for numerous genomic studies based on PCR. This technique is widely used in various areas such as forensic research, DNA cloning, molecular diagnostics, and genomics.

Genome editing technology, on the other hand, is anticipated to expand at a substantial CAGR during the projected period. The anticipated growth of gene-editing tools can be attributed to several advantages associated with synthetic and genetically modified organisms. The ability of gene editing techniques to develop products with desired traits has revolutionized various sectors, including human & animal healthcare and the agricultural sector.

Product Insights

Oligonucleotide/Oligo Pools and Synthetic DNA segment generated a revenue of USD 4,655.86 million in 2023. In several molecular and synthetic biology applications, oligonucleotides are considered the primary point. Increasing adoption of targeted NGS, mutagenesis experiments, DNA computing, and CRISPR gene editing are the major segment drivers for the same. For instance, OligoMix is an innovative and personalized product for genomics discoveries. It synthesizes numerous sequences of oligonucleotide in massive parallel. The cost for the same is lower than 0.8 cents per base.

On the other hand, the enzymes segment is anticipated to expand at a CAGR of 19.26% during the forecasted period. Enzymes are used as catalysts during biochemical reactions. The prospective application of enzymatic synthesis in delivering lengthier genes in a limited turnaround time is anticipated to boost market growth. However, the technology is still in the developing stage and has not yet been commercialized.

Application Insights

The healthcare segment dominated the market and is expected to expand at a CAGR of 19.23% throughout the forecast period. Diagnostic based on synthetic biology provides a highly specific, sensitive, real-time, and non-invasive process for detecting infectious agents, cancer cells, and therapeutics. Researchers employ rational engineering techniques to design novel bio-sensing systems that are dynamic and constituted of a processor, sensor, and reporter.

The segment is also propelled by an increase in neurological disorders such as multiple sclerosis. For instance, as of July 2023, the experts in synthetic biology from the University of Toronto Engineering are developing custom stem cells from the tissues of patients to treat diseases. Such research efforts are anticipated to supplement the segment growth.

End-use Insights

The biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies segment captured the highest revenue share of 55.0% in 2023. Synthetic biology has aided biotech and pharmaceutical companies in the development of new therapeutics for chronic diseases. For instance, Merck utilized synthetic biology techniques to generate Januvia (sitagliptin), a diabetes medication. Moreover, Novartis introduced Kymriah (Tisagenlecleucel) for the treatment of B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

Furthermore, the academic & government research institutes segment is expected to show steady growth during the forecast period. The R&D sector is considered to be capital-intensive owing to long development periods and approval cycles. R&D expenditure and funding have witnessed a steady increase during the years. According to an article published in September 2020, the R&D spending in the life sciences industry surged 22% from 2021 to 2023.

Regional Insights

North America dominated the regional market with a share of 45.0% in 2023. This major share can be attributed to increasing investment in private companies, favorable regulations, and government assistance. The U.S. majorly concentrates on research in the area of proteomics, drug screening & discovery, and genomics structure prediction, thereby propelling the growth of the synthetic biology market.

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The Asia Pacific is estimated to be the fastest-growing region; the significant developments by rising investments in Asia Pacific countries, increasing partnerships & funding in the Chinese market, and increasing collaborations in the field of synthetic biology are among the factors anticipated to drive the growth of the synthetic biology market. Moreover, several Asian countries have recently established national institutes, state-sponsored research programs, and academia-industry collaborations to promote technological innovation for the advancement of synthetic biology.

Some of the prominent players in the Synthetic biology market include:

  • Bota Biosciences Inc.
  • Codexis, Inc.
  • Creative Biogene.
  • Creative Enzymes.
  • Enbiotix, Inc.
  • Illumina, Inc.
  • Merck Kgaa (Sigma-Aldrich Co. Llc)
  • New England Biolabs
  • Euro fins Scientific
  • Novozymes
  • Pareto Bio, Inc.
  • Scarab Genomics, Llc
  • Synthego
  • Synthetic Genomics Inc.
  • Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc.

Segments Covered in the Report

This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2021 to 2033. For this study, Nova one advisor, Inc. has segmented the global synthetic biology market.

Technology

  • NGS Technology
  • PCR Technology
  • Genome Editing Technology
  • Bioprocessing Technology
  • Other Technologies

Product

  • Oligonucleotide/Oligo Pools and Synthetic DNA
  • Enzymes
  • Cloning Technologies Kits
  • Xeno-Nucleic Acids
  • Chassis Organism

Application

  • Healthcare
    • Clinical
    • Non-Clinical
  • Non-healthcare
    • Biotech Crops
    • Specialty Chemicals
    • Bio-fuels
    • Others

End-use

  • Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Companies
  • Academic and Government Research Institutes
  • Others

By Region

  • North America
  • Europe
  • Asia-Pacific
  • Latin America
  • Middle East & Africa (MEA)

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