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Cool and/or Scary

May 21st, 2010

They’ve created the first living organism with completely synthetic DNA. They didn’t build the whole cell, though, they did a transplant. Still, wow. And, unnerving. You wonder when they are going to use this to (a) cure cancer and (b) create a virus that will kill every last human being.

This part is a bit spooky:

Dr Venter told BBC News: “We’ve now been able to take our synthetic chromosome and transplant it into a recipient cell – a different organism.

”As soon as this new software goes into the cell, the cell reads [it] and converts into the species specified in that genetic code.“

Software. And the cell is hardware, which reads the program and executes it. Hrmm.

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  1. Tim Kane
    May 21st, 2010 at 09:21 | #1

    Some radio commentator in St. Louis once said, in regard to cloning of a human being that once it, or just about anything, is doable, then someone will do it sooner or later, more likely sooner rather than later.

  2. Brad
    May 21st, 2010 at 18:32 | #2

    Sadly I only thought of (b).

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