Is it wrong to synthesize one celled organisms?

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lazymon
 
Reply Sun 23 May, 2010 11:06 am
BBC News - Newsnight - Venter: Artificial living cell will benefit humanity

I am very interested in this new science and engineering feat. How would new microbial systems be unethical or bad for our ecosystem?

Dr. Venter says that there is no harm that could come if the technology were to fall into the wrong hands. Does this mean that there would be no harm for anyone with the right equipment to experiment with this technology in the comfort and privacy of their own home? I would love to be able to synthesis my own one celled organisms and watch them through a microsope, that would just be amazing.
 
xris
 
Reply Sun 23 May, 2010 03:00 pm
@lazymon,
lazymon;167717 wrote:
BBC News - Newsnight - Venter: Artificial living cell will benefit humanity

I am very interested in this new science and engineering feat. How would new microbial systems be unethical or bad for our ecosystem?

Dr. Venter says that there is no harm that could come if the technology were to fall into the wrong hands. Does this mean that there would be no harm for anyone with the right equipment to experiment with this technology in the comfort and privacy of their own home? I would love to be able to synthesis my own one celled organisms and watch them through a microsope, that would just be amazing.
They have modified it and what does this modification do exactly? Does it look that very diferent to the original ? Does it act in manner that gives us a clue to its purpose? Im bewildered.
 
lazymon
 
Reply Sun 23 May, 2010 05:58 pm
@xris,
xris;167771 wrote:
They have modified it and what does this modification do exactly? Does it look that very diferent to the original ? Does it act in manner that gives us a clue to its purpose? Im bewildered.


They synthesized the DNA using a computer program that has the DNA code built in and then injected it into an already existing cell I think? All I know is that they have the ability to manufacture DNA and have successfully reproduced a living cell that can reproduce it self.

Now they want to experiment on changing the DNA to see if they can make cells that are useful. One such use I can't wait for is bio-batteries. The bio-batteries will be batteries just like you have in your cell phone, but they will be built by cellular organisms. Block by block piece by piece the little cells will build it like little slaves Smile
 
QuinticNon
 
Reply Fri 28 May, 2010 12:28 am
@lazymon,
They didn't synthesize a cell. They only reprogrammed it. They used a membrane and nucleus from an existing organism.
 
amist
 
Reply Fri 28 May, 2010 12:50 am
@lazymon,
lazymon;167717 wrote:


Dr. Venter says that there is no harm that could come if the technology were to fall into the wrong hands. Does this mean that there would be no harm for anyone with the right equipment to experiment with this technology in the comfort and privacy of their own home?


Well, Dr. Venter isn't the arbiter of all ethics, but as a matter of fact there's nothing wrong with synthesizing life.
 
lazymon
 
Reply Fri 28 May, 2010 11:49 am
@lazymon,
One thing I could see this being used for is reconstructing human forms using DNA of celebrities like Albert Einstein. Of course the religious fanatics will raise a ruckus saying that he has no soul. That it is just a vessel with no inhabitant. Maybe it would give Albert's soul a place to return, who knows.
 
xris
 
Reply Fri 28 May, 2010 01:57 pm
@lazymon,
lazymon;170040 wrote:
One thing I could see this being used for is reconstructing human forms using DNA of celebrities like Albert Einstein. Of course the religious fanatics will raise a ruckus saying that he has no soul. That it is just a vessel with no inhabitant. Maybe it would give Albert's soul a place to return, who knows.
I am not a fanatic, not even slightly but I believe in the possibility of a soul. Why bring a man back from the dead, when his term has been served. It begs the question , would he choose to do so and can you give him his life experiences. We are all more than flesh and blood. God for me is an irritation ,of mans invention but im sure my soul has no intention of returning to a copy of my physical identity.
 
HexHammer
 
Reply Tue 1 Jun, 2010 11:50 pm
@lazymon,
lazymon;167717 wrote:
BBC News - Newsnight - Venter: Artificial living cell will benefit humanity

I am very interested in this new science and engineering feat. How would new microbial systems be unethical or bad for our ecosystem?

Dr. Venter says that there is no harm that could come if the technology were to fall into the wrong hands. Does this mean that there would be no harm for anyone with the right equipment to experiment with this technology in the comfort and privacy of their own home? I would love to be able to synthesis my own one celled organisms and watch them through a microsope, that would just be amazing.
There are no wrong per se in such action, it's only the following possebilities it will open for, but I think that lies in the far future, that is off our hands.
 
Krumple
 
Reply Wed 2 Jun, 2010 12:43 am
@xris,
xris;170084 wrote:
I am not a fanatic, not even slightly but I believe in the possibility of a soul. Why bring a man back from the dead, when his term has been served. It begs the question , would he choose to do so and can you give him his life experiences. We are all more than flesh and blood. God for me is an irritation ,of mans invention but im sure my soul has no intention of returning to a copy of my physical identity.


Well first of all, not everyone holds your point of view, so you can't understand a persons motivation because of the point of view you hold. For others it would be a whole different outlook.

Secondly, these experiments have absolutely nothing to do with copying a person. So I think it is bad to speculate on these grounds, and it gives these experiments a bad reputation even though they are not conducted so that we can copy humans.

The whole point in these experiments is to be able to create organisms that will replace our sources of resources and also help create methods to clean up the environment. Anything from bacteria that will consume carbon dioxide or produce forms of alcohol that can be converted into fuels. The only thing they are limited by is their imagination at this point. However; when people speculate on stuff that they have no intentions with it puts a bad outlook on the project. These experiments have a chance at saving the planet, they shouldn't be shadowed by ignorant speculation.
 
xris
 
Reply Wed 2 Jun, 2010 03:58 am
@Krumple,
Krumple;171993 wrote:
Well first of all, not everyone holds your point of view, so you can't understand a persons motivation because of the point of view you hold. For others it would be a whole different outlook.

Secondly, these experiments have absolutely nothing to do with copying a person. So I think it is bad to speculate on these grounds, and it gives these experiments a bad reputation even though they are not conducted so that we can copy humans.

The whole point in these experiments is to be able to create organisms that will replace our sources of resources and also help create methods to clean up the environment. Anything from bacteria that will consume carbon dioxide or produce forms of alcohol that can be converted into fuels. The only thing they are limited by is their imagination at this point. However; when people speculate on stuff that they have no intentions with it puts a bad outlook on the project. These experiments have a chance at saving the planet, they shouldn't be shadowed by ignorant speculation.
Once again you jump to conclusions..its a constant attitude you appear to be taking. Why don't you try understanding someones opinion before you jump to condemn or conclude what their views are? A question was posed and I made a comment, not exactly speculating or condemning these experiments is it????
 
Wozz
 
Reply Tue 8 Jun, 2010 10:43 am
@lazymon,
"like you have in your cell phone, but they will be built by cellular organisms. Block by block piece by piece the little cells will build it like little slaves"
-Lazymon

Isn't that statement itself unethical? Just making a little funny here because this discussion has taken an interesting turn. I do agree though, how cool would it be to have our electronics powered by life itself.

I also read up on this after seeing the news. A lot of scientists are worried that this breakthrough will be leaked some how and will lead to bio-terrorism. I'm sure it's ethical to synthesize life but what they did was barely that. They took a bacteria cell and a disease cell or something like it from a goat and combined it. They created a "new" organism.
 
Krumple
 
Reply Tue 8 Jun, 2010 12:21 pm
@Wozz,
Wozz;174704 wrote:
"like you have in your cell phone, but they will be built by cellular organisms. Block by block piece by piece the little cells will build it like little slaves"
-Lazymon

Isn't that statement itself unethical? Just making a little funny here because this discussion has taken an interesting turn. I do agree though, how cool would it be to have our electronics powered by life itself.

I also read up on this after seeing the news. A lot of scientists are worried that this breakthrough will be leaked some how and will lead to bio-terrorism. I'm sure it's ethical to synthesize life but what they did was barely that. They took a bacteria cell and a disease cell or something like it from a goat and combined it. They created a "new" organism.


I would rather face the threat of bio-terrorism than be terrorized by pure speculation.
 
Wozz
 
Reply Tue 8 Jun, 2010 01:58 pm
@lazymon,
Are you sure of that? You'd rather have someone pervert a bacteria that eats your flesh until you die?
 
Krumple
 
Reply Tue 8 Jun, 2010 02:18 pm
@Wozz,
Wozz;174780 wrote:
Are you sure of that? You'd rather have someone pervert a bacteria that eats your flesh until you die?


Yes I would rather than to have people speculate and make up unfounded fears to prevent the progress of science and biology.

Things will always have their day in the sun or the day in wickedness. You can't stop people from trying to kill each other if that is their motivation. They will always find a way. You shouldn't halt scientific progress because it might be used to kill billions of people. Is it sad that people want to kill other people, yes, but to blame science for it, is just stupid.

Did the atomic age kill a lot of people? Yes. Should we have never developed the knowledge? No.

Abuse will always happen. It is the job of education and getting rid of superstition and eliminating hate over petty things like religious beliefs and sexuality that needs to be solved. If we solve hatred then where is the harm in progressing science?

We should only fear the fear and speculation does nothing but create fear.
 
Wozz
 
Reply Tue 8 Jun, 2010 02:27 pm
@lazymon,
So you're saying it is the human that has the problem with killing and hatred not science. But science has proven endlessly in the past that it gives us an efficient, effective and quicker way to kill. Science in a way is tool that is always changing that aids us in killing. You can't take the motivation to kill out of the human, why not take the advancements out instead?
 
Krumple
 
Reply Tue 8 Jun, 2010 02:36 pm
@Wozz,
Wozz;174795 wrote:
So you're saying it is the human that has the problem with killing and hatred not science. But science has proven endlessly in the past that it gives us an efficient, effective and quicker way to kill. Science in a way is tool that is always changing that aids us in killing. You can't take the motivation to kill out of the human, why not take the advancements out instead?


Yeah but science has also allowed us to save lives, and make living standards safer and more reliable as well.

Like I said it is the people petty hatred that is the problem. Sure science is used to invent weapons that are used against the people that are hated. But if you solve the hatred there wont be any need to create weapons.

Restricting science will not solve the problem of hatred. People will find other ways to murder even without science. So stopping science is not the solution. Solving hatred is.
 
Wozz
 
Reply Tue 8 Jun, 2010 02:39 pm
@lazymon,
You can't solve either of them anyways so what is the point? You do realize almost every advancement in science falls under the "the worst things are done with good intentions". Sure, we may save 100 million lives a year but do you want to be worried that someone is going to plague you? Is saving 100 million lives worth sacrificing maybe 300 million lives? I think logic says it's not.
 
Krumple
 
Reply Tue 8 Jun, 2010 02:43 pm
@Wozz,
Wozz;174802 wrote:
You can't solve either of them anyways so what is the point? You do realize almost every advancement in science falls under the "the worst things are done with good intentions". Sure, we may save 100 million lives a year but do you want to be worried that someone is going to plague you? Is saving 100 million lives worth sacrificing maybe 300 million lives? I think logic says it's not.


Once again you fall under the speculation. You want to blame science as the cause but it's not the root of the problem which you refuse to acknowledge.

You can cure hatred, but very few people want to because they simply refuse to accept others beliefs. You would rather keep hatred a live because you hate science, but to admit that you hate it, would reveal that it is you who is causing the killing not science.
 
Wozz
 
Reply Tue 8 Jun, 2010 02:48 pm
@lazymon,
Actually I'm all for science, I'm just playing the devils advocate right now. But you can't cure hatred, no matter what. But you could take away tools for killing. I understand it's human nature to kill, so how do you plan on changing human nature? I'm interested in your techniques.
 
HexHammer
 
Reply Tue 8 Jun, 2010 02:53 pm
@Krumple,
Krumple;174805 wrote:
You can cure hatred, but very few people want to because they simply refuse to accept others beliefs. You would rather keep hatred a live because you hate science, but to admit that you hate it, would reveal that it is you who is causing the killing not science.
Not all wars and conflicts are caused by hatred, that is indeed a factor that the regimes involved will promote and induce in their people, to gain posetive attitude towards war.
 
 

 
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