December 19, 2016 Issue | Chemical & Engineering News
 
Copyright © 2016 American Chemical Society
 

December 19, 2016 Issue

Volume 94, Issue 49
09449-ofc
December 19, 2016 Issue, Vol. 94 | Iss. 49
C&EN is taking stock of 2016’s biggest moments in chemistry.
By Amanda Yarnell
(pp. 22-23)
Features
Sponsored Content
New solution from CAS provides hope for Analytical Scientists (pp. 56-57)
Back Issues
 
Mini factory made drugs on demand
Continuous-flow system went from synthesis to dosage forms in hours
(p.25)
World’s first PET-munching microbe discovered
Bacterium’s enzymes break popular plastic’s bonds to form recyclable terephthalic acid and ethylene glycol
(p.25)
Liquid metals went to work
Unusual properties of gallium alloys opened a door to stretchable electronics and soldering without heat
(p.26)
Methylene activation reached new heights
Methylene activation reached new heights
(p.26)
Biological structures of the year
Nearsighted pictures portend farsighted applications
(p.27)
Scientists beefed up the antibiotic arsenal
Researchers synthesized new molecules, turned to nature to find others
(p.28)
Wearable sensors were ‘the’ fashion accessories of 2016
Researchers developed an armful of devices that monitor health and chemical exposure
(p.28)
An enzymatic route to carbon-silicon bonds
Bacterial cytochrome c demonstrated the first example of ‘natural’ organosilicon chemistry
(p.29)
Single-atom catalysts gained a toehold
Studies showed isolated atoms on solids can serve as stable active catalysts
(p.29)
Molecules of the Year
C&EN highlights some of the coolest compounds reported in 2016
(pp. 30-31)
Hawaii explosion cost a researcher an arm
Electrostatic spark likely ignited tank containing mix of hydrogen, oxygen, and carbon dioxide gases
(p.33)
TSCA reform crossed the finish line
After decades of negotiations, law that controls chemicals in the U.S. marketplace got a makeover
(p.33)
The periodic table got four new elements
Nihonium, moscovium, tennessine, and oganesson complete the seventh row
(p.34)
U.S. elected Trump as president
Uncertainty remains about his stance on science
(p.34)
Labs made advances in Zika research
Although funding to fight the virus was stymied, scientists hit milestones
(p.35)
Post Dow-DuPont, chemical deal-making waned as 2016 advanced
A few big chemical deals were inked during the year, but it was hardly the frenzy observers were expecting
(p.35)
2016 Nobel Prize in Chemistry at a glance
Here’s who made the trip to Stockholm this year
(p.36)
Four ag giants to rule them all
Bayer, Dow, Syngenta pursued deals with rivals to ensure profitability, innovation
(p.36)
Brexit bomb exploded
The chemistry enterprise faces uncertainty after British citizens voted to leave the EU
(p.37)
Focus returned to Iran’s chemical industry
Lifting of sanctions draws interest of BASF, Shell, Total, and others
(p.37)
Overtime pay limit doubles under Obama administration
Salary boost for research postdocs faces uncertainty
(p.37)
Perfluorinated compounds got increased scrutiny
Federal agencies and courts had their say on the environmentally long-lived substances
(p.38)
The CRISPR craze continued
Patents were disputed, companies went public, and CRISPR-edited cells made it into humans
(p.38)
From the lab to the market
Several new technologies hit commercial milestones in 2016
(p.39)
Paris Agreement to curb climate change took off
Countries also clinched deal to limit hydrofluorocarbon use
(p.39)
Flint’s water woes lingered
A failure to properly treat the city’s drinking water caused high lead levels and disease outbreaks
(p.40)
World chemical production at a glance
Growth ebbed in North America and Europe but accelerated in Asia
(p.40)
As China’s economy slowed, chemical makers adjusted
Western firms focused on healthy markets such as auto manufacturing, personal care
(p.41)
Mostafa A. El-Sayed won the 2016 Priestley Medal
Nanomaterials and spectroscopy pioneer received the American Chemical Society’s highest honor
(p.41)
ACS invests internationally
Global commitment is seen across the society’s activities
(pp. 42-44)
Spun-off firms found their footing in 2016
Chemours, Versum showed how young firms can cut costs, grow opportunities
(pp. 42-44)
ACS proposed chemistry preprint server
Website would promote access to unpublished research
(p.43)
Berkeley College of Chemistry avoided reorganization
Student’s petition ignited social media firestorm
(p.43)
Remembering the Nobel laureates we lost in 2016
Chemistry hasn’t lost four of its Nobel Prize winners in a single year—a record—since 1971
(p.43)
Fight against opioid epidemic continued in 2016
Public health experts work to expand access to overdose treatment; DEA proposes then reconsiders ban on opioid alternative
(p.44)
Noble gas shortages averted, for now
Higher prices and new sources made neon and helium more widely available
(p.44)
ACS launched new journals
ACS Earth & Space Chemistry and ACS Energy Letters debuted this year
(p.45)
Crop protection products in the crosshairs
Health and environmental concerns prompted regulatory action
(p.45)
Website search terms of the year
Once on C&EN’s site, these are the subjects that readers looked up the most often in 2016
(p.45)
Biobased materials hit the big time
Companies making polymers from biomass noted substantial progress in 2016
(p.46)
No better deal emerged for Mossville, La.
Residents are frustrated as the South African company’s buyout program nears completion
(p.46)
U.S. prepares for national food labeling standard
Disclosure of genetically modified ingredients will soon be mandatory
(p.46)
The year in quotes
Look back at the stories C&EN told in 2016 through some of the year’s most powerful quotes.
(pp. 48-49)
Enzyme’s structure helped elucidate RNAi’s mechanism
Study confirmed how RNA-cleaving “Dicer” enzyme measures and then snips its substrates, advancing our understanding of gene silencing
(p.51)
Watching protein expression one molecule at a time
Single-molecule imaging methods confirmed that gene expression is a random, bursty process
(p.52)
Scientists smiled with DNA origami
Once used to design tiny smiley faces, the nanoscale patterning technique is gaining credibility as a practical tool
(p.53)
Most-cited chemistry papers published a decade ago
C&EN and CAS look back at high-impact molecular research from 2006
(p.54)
 

News of the Week

Trump on energy and climate

EPA, Energy Department nominees signal sea change
(p.7)

Brain waves clear Alzheimer’s plaques

New study in mice suggests that triggering certain patterns of brain activity could spur immune cells to clear out amyloid-β
(p.8)

Fluorinated azides click to make triazoles

Researchers create new reagents for a fluorinated version of copper-catalyzed azide-alkyne click chemistry
(p.8)

New technique shocks proteins into action

Electric fields spark internal motions that can be observed, showing how proteins do their jobs
(p.9)

A two-punch attack from CRISPR knocks out HIV in cells

The gene-editing technology mutates the virus’s DNA, blocking its replication in immune cells
(p.10)

Engineered cells control blood sugar

Cells programmed to sense glucose and release insulin prevent hyperglycemia in diabetic mice
(p.10)

Electrides join 2-D materials club

Nanosheets of ionic solids consisting of atomic planes separated by layers of electrons may find electronics applications
(p.11)

Big pharma firms’ year-end overhauls

Site closures and job cuts come from a cluster of drug companies
(p.14)

Trump taps Liveris for manufacturing role

Dow CEO will head committee aimed at turning around manufacturing
(p.14)

U.S.’s chemical outlook is sunnier than Europe’s

Natural gas continues to give U.S. chemical makers an advantage over their counterparts in Europe
(p.15)

Lonza will acquire capsule maker Capsugel

Swiss pharma chemicals firm joins competitors in adding drug formulation services
(p.16)

EPA moves to ban uses of trichloroethylene

Proposal would prohibit some uses of common solvent to protect workers, consumers
(p.20)

Medical innovation bill sails through Congress

Legislation authorizes increases in funding for NIH, FDA with caveats
(p.20)
 

Departments

09449-cover21-bomb

Business

The chemistry enterprise faces uncertainty after British citizens voted to leave the EU
(p.37)
Lifting of sanctions draws interest of BASF, Shell, Total, and others
(p.37)
Bayer, Dow, Syngenta pursued deals with rivals to ensure profitability, innovation
(p.36)
Western firms focused on healthy markets such as auto manufacturing, personal care
(p.41)
Chemours, Versum showed how young firms can cut costs, grow opportunities
(pp. 42-44)
A few big chemical deals were inked during the year, but it was hardly the frenzy observers were expecting
(p.35)
Growth ebbed in North America and Europe but accelerated in Asia
(p.40)
Several new technologies hit commercial milestones in 2016
(p.39)
Higher prices and new sources made neon and helium more widely available
(p.44)
Companies making polymers from biomass noted substantial progress in 2016
(p.46)
Residents are frustrated as the South African company’s buyout program nears completion
(p.46)
C&EN is taking stock of 2016’s biggest moments in chemistry.
(pp. 22-23)

ACS News

Global commitment is seen across the society’s activities
(pp. 42-44)
ACS Earth & Space Chemistry and ACS Energy Letters debuted this year
(p.45)

Government & Policy

Salary boost for research postdocs faces uncertainty
(p.37)
After decades of negotiations, law that controls chemicals in the U.S. marketplace got a makeover
(p.33)
Countries also clinched deal to limit hydrofluorocarbon use
(p.39)
Disclosure of genetically modified ingredients will soon be mandatory
(p.46)
Health and environmental concerns prompted regulatory action
(p.45)
Uncertainty remains about his stance on science
(p.34)

Education

Student’s petition ignited social media firestorm
(p.43)
09449-cover6-revelatory

Science & Technology

Nearsighted pictures portend farsighted applications
(p.27)
Continuous-flow system went from synthesis to dosage forms in hours
(p.25)
Bacterium’s enzymes break popular plastic’s bonds to form recyclable terephthalic acid and ethylene glycol
(p.25)
Unusual properties of gallium alloys opened a door to stretchable electronics and soldering without heat
(p.26)
Methylene activation reached new heights
(p.26)
Researchers developed an armful of devices that monitor health and chemical exposure
(p.28)
Studies showed isolated atoms on solids can serve as stable active catalysts
(p.29)
Researchers synthesized new molecules, turned to nature to find others
(p.28)
Bacterial cytochrome c demonstrated the first example of ‘natural’ organosilicon chemistry
(p.29)
A failure to properly treat the city’s drinking water caused high lead levels and disease outbreaks
(p.40)
Here’s who made the trip to Stockholm this year
(p.36)
Nanomaterials and spectroscopy pioneer received the American Chemical Society’s highest honor
(p.41)
Although funding to fight the virus was stymied, scientists hit milestones
(p.35)
Nihonium, moscovium, tennessine, and oganesson complete the seventh row
(p.34)
Electrostatic spark likely ignited tank containing mix of hydrogen, oxygen, and carbon dioxide gases
(p.33)
Chemistry hasn’t lost four of its Nobel Prize winners in a single year—a record—since 1971
(p.43)
Website would promote access to unpublished research
(p.43)
Study confirmed how RNA-cleaving “Dicer” enzyme measures and then snips its substrates, advancing our understanding of gene silencing
(p.51)
Once on C&EN’s site, these are the subjects that readers looked up the most often in 2016
(p.45)
Public health experts work to expand access to overdose treatment; DEA proposes then reconsiders ban on opioid alternative
(p.44)
Federal agencies and courts had their say on the environmentally long-lived substances
(p.38)
Patents were disputed, companies went public, and CRISPR-edited cells made it into humans
(p.38)
Single-molecule imaging methods confirmed that gene expression is a random, bursty process
(p.52)
C&EN highlights some of the coolest compounds reported in 2016
(pp. 30-31)
Once used to design tiny smiley faces, the nanoscale patterning technique is gaining credibility as a practical tool
(p.53)
C&EN and CAS look back at high-impact molecular research from 2006
(p.54)
Look back at the stories C&EN told in 2016 through some of the year’s most powerful quotes.
(pp. 48-49)

Editor's Page