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Claim of Having Created Synthetic Life Is Far Overblown

A valid claim of creating synthetic life would require that – Even absent an agreed-upon ethics-based definition of “synthetic life,” a common sense definition would require that: (1) The synthetic DNA coding and sequencing not slavishly copy a known life form. Otherwise Life has done all the work in evolutionarily stumbling upon a coding sequence and organization that can self-replicate an organism on its own. (2) The synthesized DNA must either (a) code its own contents-enclosure (cell wall for bacteria) or (b) be placed in equally novel, human-created container, rather than [more...]

Date: 2010-06-18 13:37:40

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Prescribed Reading On Prescriptive Information | Uncommon Descent

While initiatives such as the Origin Of Life Prize have encouraged researchers to find non-super-naturalistic processes that might explain the origins of prescriptive information, no offerings to-date have withstood the test of scientific scrutiny. Indeed all known cases of such information invariably point to the work of a mind. Johnson emphasizes the relevance of probability in his espousal of this inference- the simplest form of life was found to be 10exp80,000 times more likely of having a mindful than a non-mindful source. Johnson repeatedly stresses how the information content of DNA is [more...]

Date: 2010-10-11 16:49:10


Cellular Clock Movement Supports Seismic Modifications In ...

Human cells have only got so many lives, same as cats. When divided over time they are altered, slow down and gradually quit separating – this is referred to in scientific terms as cellular senescence – . Already biologists understand that a cellular timer made up of structures at the end of the chromosome called Telomeres, document any activity regarding the cells’ lives and the number that have been exhausted. Until this point, researchers have yet to learn how the running of the clock determines the mortality of the cells. An investigation [more...]

Date: 2010-10-11 21:49:26


Have scientists really created artificial life in a test tube...

"It's a new enabling technology, but it tells you as much about the definition of life as anything else. We consider it a philosophical leap, being able to start with information in the computer, build the chromosome chemically and have it active. That has never been done before. It has changed my definitions of life and how dynamic it is - simply by putting new software into the cell, the cell starts producing the new proteins coded for by that software and creates a new cell. So life is much more dynamic than most people envision and the dynamic process is totally controlled by the software [more...]

Date: 2010-05-21 08:09:00


Artificial Life Created in a Laboratory for the First Time ...

They manufactured a new chromosome from artificial DNA in a test tube, then transferred it into an empty cell and watched it multiply – the very definition of being alive. The man-made single cell “creature”, which is a modified version of one of the simplest bacteria on earth, proves that the technology works. Now Dr Venter believes organism, nicknamed Synthia, will pave the way for more complex creatures that can transform environmental waste into clean fuel, vaccinate against disease and soak up pollution. But his development has also triggered debate over the ethics of “playing [more...]

Date: 2010-05-21 13:46:05


Scientists Create First Living Synthetic Cell With Computer, Mix ...

TORONTO – In revolutionary research that may end up altering our definition of life, scientists have created the first synthetic cell powered by artificially created DNA. The achievement caps 15 years of work by a large team of researchers, led by Craig Venter of Human Genome Project fame, who engineered a chromosome and inserted it into a bacterium to create a new living entity. ``This is the first self-replicating species that we’ve had on the planet whose parent is a computer,’’ Venter told a teleconference presented Thursday by the journal Science, which published the work. The [more...]

Date: 2010-05-21 14:21:11


Personalized medicine: Check your DNA at the door - SmartPlanet

College kids survive on a diet of beer and pizza, but personalized medicine might soon change that. This summer, UC - Berkeley wants 5,500 new students to participate in a DNA experiment: The students will be required to return a swab of their cheek cells, so they can find out if they have the genes to metabolize folate, lactose, and alcohol. Ideally, the students who lack the genes will modify their behavior accordingly. They would eat more green vegetables, avoid milk products (and prepare to explain to everyone and their mother why they now drink soy milk), and hold back on the drinking. [more...]

Date: 2010-05-21 11:45:21



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