Oct 6, 2007

Artificial Life is becoming a Reality

Now, Scientists are creating the world's first Artificial Life Form. Craig Venter, a DNA researcher, has built an entirely synthetic chromosome - a sequence of genes - and plans to implant it in an existing cell. If he succeeds he and his team will have created an almost entirely new life form for the first time.

Scientists hope that, the discovery will lead to developments of bio-engineering to help tackle climate change, or provide alternative energy sources.

the synthetic chromosome is 381 genes long and has been named Mycoplasma laboratorium. The scientists hope to implant it in to the cell of another bacterium to create the artificial life. The resulting bacterium will rely on the molecules of the host cell to reproduce, but will otherwise be entirely artificial.

Mr Venter told The Guardian newspaper that creating the new life form would be "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. Link


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