Seriously, we need to have a Science Fiction Film Festival for Scientsts

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I mean, we all know where this is heading:

Craig Venter, the controversial DNA researcher involved in the race to decipher the human genetic code, has built a synthetic chromosome out of laboratory chemicals and is poised to announce the creation of the first new artificial life form on Earth.

Of course, that’s not really the problem, it’s the next bit that leads to the extinction of the human race.

The DNA sequence is based on the bacterium Mycoplasma genitalium which the team pared down to the bare essentials needed to support life, removing a fifth of its genetic make-up. The wholly synthetically reconstructed chromosome, which the team have christened Mycoplasma laboratorium, has been watermarked with inks for easy recognition. It is then transplanted into a living bacterial cell and in the final stage of the process it is expected to take control of the cell and in effect become a new life form. The team of scientists has already successfully transplanted the genome of one type of bacterium into the cell of another, effectively changing the cell’s species. Mr Venter said he was “100% confident” the same technique would work for the artificially created chromosome.

Has he never read or seen any of a bajillion science fiction books or movies that tell us what will happen when this artificial bacteria mutates into something that starts to kill us all? I am all for science and knowledge and learning stuff, but this can only end badly.

Unless the robots take over first and download us into the mainframe. In which case, bacteria-shmacteria! I’ll be matrixing all over the place with a cool wardrobe, cool shades, sexy companions, and superhuman powers.

Link (via Engadget)

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