Synthetic Life Breakthrough by 2011?

Posted by Michael Pinto on Dec 8, 2008 in Science |

Synthetic Life Breakthrough by 2011?

It might be quite a leap from going to making synthetic single celled creatures by 2011 to full blown Blade Runner replicants by 2019 — but it does make one wonder if we might see that Brave New World of genetic engineering in our lifetime:

Scientists on Brink of Creating Synthetic Life

“Scientists, including Harvard Medical School’s Jack Szostak, expect an announcement within three to 10 years from someone in the now little-known field of “wet artificial life” that they have created the first cell of synthetic life — made from the basic chemicals in DNA. Meanwhile at the J. Craig Venter Institute , a team of scientists has refined its method for building a synthetic genome. In a paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the researchers demonstrate that they can assemble dozens of snippets of DNA into a complete Mycoplasma genitalium genome in just one step in yeast.”

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