Friday, January 25, 2008

New Vistas in Mapping the Genome of Life

In the continuing quest to get one step closer to making man-made life a reality, genetic engineering researcher Dr. J. Craig Venter has announced that he and his team have manufactured the entire genome of a bacterium, through a clever "stitching together" of its chemical components, a feat being heralded as "watershed" for the emerging field called synthetic biology.
This genome is more than 10 times as long as the longest piece of DNA ever previously synthesized. What it means is the possibility of scientists to be able to one day design an organism on a computer, press the “print” button to have the necessary DNA made, and then put that DNA into a cell to produce a custom-made creature, a possibility certain to raise many ethics questions in the minds of scholars and laymen alike.

See details of this emerging technology in this from the NY Times.

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