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Biosystems and Biomaterials Division

BBD's mission is to foster innovation and build confidence in quantitative biology and biomaterial measurements across government and industry in support of the bio-economy.

Welcome to the Biosystems and Biomaterials Division

BBD is focused on advancing biometrology, standards, and technologies to foster innovation and accelerate the translation and commercialization of emerging biotechnologies in support of the bioeconomy.  Working across U.S. government agencies, industry, and other partners, our multi-disciplinary teams develop foundational measurement science and tools, data-driven standards, reference materials, reference data, and protocols by integrating state-of-the-art automation, analytical methods, and ML/AI as platforms for innovation and standardization. Our work supports various sectors of the bioeconomy, including clinical diagnostics, advanced therapies, agriculture, energy, industrial biotechnology, and production of new biomaterials. Click here for an overview video of the Division.

PRIMARY FOCUS AREAS     

Genetic Circuit

Engineering Biology
Rapid advances in the ability to genetically modify biological organisms have advanced a new engineering discipline, commonly referred to as synthetic biology. This approach seeks to harness the power of living systems for a variety of manufacturing applications, such as advanced therapeutics, sustainable fuels, chemical feedstocks, and advanced materials.  

Cells

Advanced Therapies
Advanced therapies are demonstrating promising clinical efficacy and could change the paradigm for treating a wide range of diseases and injuries. Clinical translation of this broad class of new therapeutics requires better defined and characterized products and more robust, reliable, and cost-effective manufacturing processes.

Breast Cancer Cells

Precision Medicine
The conventional approach to medicine is rapidly changing to a data-driven strategy in which therapies are individually targeted to a patient based on genome, physiology, environment, or lifestyle. This approach is revolutionizing health care— especially in the treatment of cancer—but its success depends on using data from bioanalytical measurements with potential wide-ranging biases and uncertainties.    

Microbiome

Microbiome
Microbial communities (microbiomes) abound everywhere, forming resilient ecological networks adapted to their environments. Research has connected the behavior of these cooperative communities to both beneficial and problematic outcomes in diverse biological systems including: human health, agricultural productivity, water and food safety, waste remediation, and infrastructure corrosion.

Events

News and Updates

Stem Cells and AI: Better Together

One day in the future when you need medical care, someone will examine you, diagnose the problem, remove some of your body’s healthy cells, and then use them to

A Map App to Track Stem Cells

Researchers who work with stem cells have ambitious goals. Some want to cure cancer or treat heart disease. Others want to grow the tissues and organs that

Industry Impacts

Benchmarks for Biologic Drugs

Protein-based biologic drugs, which are increasingly used to treat cancers, autoimmune disorders and infectious diseases, are hard to produce, store and deliver

Awards

Greta Babakhanova Wins Brown Prize

The award includes a financial award, invitation to present a talk, and an invitation to contribute a short article describing Babakhanova’s...

Press Coverage

Cool Jobs: Poop investigators

Science News for Students
The work of NIST's Complex Microbial Systems group, which is working to make a reference material to aid in analyzing microbiome DNA, is reviewed.

Contacts

Division Chief

Deputy Chief

NIST Fellow

Administrative Officer

Division Office Manager

IT Specialist

Division Safety Representative

Property Officer