Synthetic cell research reaches new level

  TopCat® 18:24 21 May 10

Quite a mind boggling announcement that 'has been hailed as a scientific landmark, but critics say there are dangers posed by synthetic organisms....' click here

There is the potential for good things to come from this landmark research, as described in the article, but will or should it be allowed to progress further or not? For myself, I believe synthetic biology should continue, but under the strictest of regulation at all times. TC.

  ronalddonald 20:18 21 May 10

why do the pictures of this new life cell remind me of bacteria

  morddwyd 20:21 21 May 10

"dangers posed by synthetic organisms."

The same dangers posed by natural organisms - malaria, smallpox, plague, polio etc.

How do we know the next one will not be something for which there is no known cure?

I take forum member's point, and both my wife and I have reason to be grateful for past medical research, but............

  carver 09:02 22 May 10

I have to say that in this case if this sort of research can help people then I am all for it.

This year alone I have lost one very good friend to skin cancer and another 2 have been diagnosed with advanced prostrate cancer, one of those friends is only 45, still very young with what should be years ahead of him.

The problem is not with the research but what is done with the outcome of it. You only have to look at what has been done with nuclear weapons, instead of better nuclear reactors to solve energy demands you have bigger, better weapons to kill every one.

  TopCat® 14:40 22 May 10

I tend to agree with you on what you say in your last paragraph. I wouldn't be surprised to learn that certain US scientists are already at work studying the possible military aspects of this disclosure. Should they discover anything suitable of 'weapons grade' quality then it will, I'm afraid, be secretly whisked away from under the eyes of any regulation authority. TC.

  Forum Editor 16:11 22 May 10

Presumably because you've seen lots of images of bacteria, and only one of synthetic life cells.

  Quickbeam 16:40 22 May 10

We could always ban it and go back to dying before we get to 50 or so.

When I've spoken to people in the past that were born in the Victorian era, they seem to have coped quite well with all the changes that the 20 century brought... no reason to expect that we can't cope with even more changes over the next century.

  Forum Editor 17:21 22 May 10

whether some people like it or not. You can't ban scientific research, no matter how hard you try - and we shouldn't try.

  rdave13 18:06 22 May 10

Is it truly science fiction stuff finally starting to becoming a reality? A bit frightening. Can you imagine a semi-biological computer? Created as a soldier?
On the other hand if it can aid in curing cancer and other diseases then, used in the right hands, it's a great achievement.

  zzzz999 18:13 22 May 10

Don't worry if any mutants are created by this research we can throw them into the black hole being created by the Hadron collider

  TopCat® 20:41 05 Jun 10

it, a documentary on this subject will be shown next Monday on the Discovery Channel at 8pm. TC.

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