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Thread: Scientist claims to have created artificial life

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    Registered Member Supporting Member bob's Avatar
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    Default Scientist claims to have created artificial life

    Scientist claims to have created artificial life


    Saturday Oct 6 16:00 AEST

    A controversial scientist claims to have created a new form of artificial life by building a synthetic chromosome out of laboratory chemicals.

    In a move certain to provoke fierce ethical debate, DNA researcher Craig Venter is expected to announce that his team of scientists has successfully implanted the artificial chromosome into a bacterial cell, The Guardian reported.

    The US-based scientists have "stitched" together 381 genes, based on the DNA sequence of the bacterium Mycoplasma genitalium, a parasitic organism which can cause urinary tract infections.

    The bacterium's already-small genome has been stripped back in the construction of the artificial chromosome, leaving only the material essential to support life.

    Once the reconstructed chromosome is transplanted into its bacteria host, it will take control of the bacteria and become, essentially, a new form of life.

    But the new life form, named the Mycoplasma laboratorium, will still depend on its host's existing properties to replicate itself and metabolise.

    Mr Venter told The Guardian that he believed the project was "a very important philosophical step in the history of our species".

    "We are going from reading our genetic code to the ability to write it. That gives us the hypothetical ability to do things never contemplated before," he said.
    He said he had carried out an ethical review before embarking on the project, and talked up possible designer genome advances, including carbon-dioxide eating bacteria to combat global warming.

    "We feel that this is good science," he said.

    http://news.ninemsn.com.au/article.aspx?id=303151

    Bio of Craig Venter (real life inspiration for Jurassic Park?)

  2. #2
    Teh El Macho
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    Can he create a keggelistic nympho hooker with taylor-made boob and ass proportions???

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    Science Fucker Photobucket WarPhalange's Avatar
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    Oh yeah, one step closer to being able to have "mutant power" implants. Awesome.

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    Registered Member TM's Avatar
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    Can they do three breasts and a trick pelvis?

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    HONEY BADGER! king of seals's Avatar
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    Such an experiment could - will - have interesting applications in the field of genetics since we could directly work on chromosomes as opposed to always rely on plasmids, phages or cosmids.

    But the "artifical life" claim is too gross. To be deemed "artificial life" it should be completely built from scratch.
    "The day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the Supreme Being as His father, in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter." -Thomas Jefferson - (purposefully taken out of its context) Source.

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    태권도! kwoww's Avatar
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    Very cool stuff, might be the next step in gene therapy.

    Just have to be careful that the power doesn't get abused.

    edit: yeah it's not artificial life, it's an artificial genome. similar, but "artificial life" would entail an complete, self-reproducing cell assembled from non-living substances.

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    Science Fucker Photobucket WarPhalange's Avatar
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    A zombie?

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    Registered Member John_Dillinger's Avatar
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    It sounds more like... Las Plagas!

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    If I die before I wake.. Cullion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Poop Loops
    Oh yeah, one step closer to being able to have "mutant power" implants. Awesome.
    I'm pretty sure that the major powers like the US and China already have or are close to the ability to genetically engineer humans for stuff like improved atheletic attributes, higher pain threshold, improved night-time vision etc..

    A lot of the genes for this stuff were discovered over a decade ago in mice. One day, the sci-fi idea of the engineered 'super soldier' will happen, if it hasn't already happened on the quiet. The results of such experiments could be reaching school age right now somewhere in China, Russia or the US.

    Example: This mouse is buff and cut without needing to work out
    http://www.futurepundit.com/archives/003886.html

    The researchers report that the enzyme called AMP-activated protein kinase (or AMPK) is directly involved in optimizing muscle activity. The team bred a mouse that genetically expressed AMPK in an activated state. Like a trained athlete, this mouse enjoyed increased capacity to exercise, manifested by its ability to run three times longer than a normal mouse before exhaustion. One particularly striking feature of the finding was the accumulation of muscle glycogen, the stored form of carbohydrates, a condition that many athletes seek by "carbo-loading" before an event or game. The study appears in the Nov. 14 online issue of the American Journal of Physiology: Endocrinology and Metabolism.
    Last edited by Cullion; 6th October 07 at 03:16 PM.
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    Registered Member NoMan's Avatar
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    I'd imagine if they were doing research, the most common search for a "super-soldier" would be for genes that make a person resistant to disease. The Civil Wars, World Wars, Korea, Vietnam, etc., had a high soldier casualty rate from disease. If you want to make money, figure out what genes those are and patent them. Myriad Genetics patented two human gene mutations that increase susceptibility to breast cancer. If you screen for those genes, you got to pay them money. So the hooker w/ breasts/butt proportions gene that's attracted to you special is just a patent waiting to be made.

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