Genomic Revolution Meets Fundamental Question of What We Are

The recent accomplishment of Dr Venturer and his team in creating the first synthetic life form from a design run on his computer brings with it endless possibilities. The fundamental question of who we are is hidden in there – somewhere.

The accomplishment essentially is that a genome was constructed virtually, printed into a real genome and transplanted into a cell. The cell then, consisting only of this DNA, did what was expected of it and replicated some billion times successfully.

My DNA needs debugging?

Now the field of knowledge that is required for understanding the software of the genome must be enormous. The possibility of making and changing the genome to do certain tasks is available and something that Dr Venter is certainly going to make use of. Him and his team are all working with pharmaceutical and fuel companies, designing chromosomes for bacteria that hopefully will produce fuels and medicines. The fantastic goal to achieve in the future would be learning all the associated rules of the genome and how it reacts with various environments. The software could then produce virtually the result of any changes made to a cell’s DNA. The first version of Life, the software DNA creator would then become a reality. As the definition of life shifts in paradigm, the later versions, with access to all the DNA data of current life forms could enable a much deeper insight on “life’s” impact on the material world will be a source of even greater discovery.

Have you backed up your DNA?

The ability to create nanotechnology that enables the operation of accurately checking and efficiently changing the DNA within existing cells is an enormous next step that will without doubt change our lives forever. I know this all takes leaps forward from the achievement of Dr Venturer and his team but hidden in there is the chance to remove suffering from disease, the wasted and tragic effect of aging and the prolonging of our own lives.

Man (DNA), Know Thyself

The clues to the workings of life are hidden in complex reactions of four chemicals, Adenine, Cytosine, Guanine and Thymine that form the information holding aspect of Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). The combination of just these four chemicals into strands of DNA forms the complete workings of every life form, plus a few viruses, known to man. Everything that a life form is capable of doing in the material world is down to the way, the pattern, formed by them. Everything that you are able to do is enabled by this wonderful process. It is one of the most important areas of research that we have ever undertaken and every effort to understand it will bring us closer to a real understanding of who and what we are. The basic and essential knowledge of the building blocks of who we are should be understood and recognised by everyone.

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  • Wow, this is scary stuff. Synthetic life? I assume the host cell started out alive because no one has been able to create life from scratch and I do not believe they ever will succeed in crossing into God’s territory.

    • Shawn Du’Mmett

      Personally I don’t find it scary, by definition we wandered into God’s territory the moment we manipulated the universe to our own will, way before the invention of fire. Life is something that we really don’t understand, even though every one of us actually experiences it and the scientific explanation of life does nothing to add to that. I firmly believe that ‘Life’ itself is something way beyond the mechanics of creating DNA and living cells, all we are doing is creating vehicles for life to enter into.

  • Wow, this is scary stuff. Synthetic life? I assume the host cell started out alive because no one has been able to create life from scratch and I do not believe they ever will succeed in crossing into God’s territory.

    • Shawn Du’Mmett

      Personally I don’t find it scary, by definition we wandered into God’s territory the moment we manipulated the universe to our own will, way before the invention of fire. Life is something that we really don’t understand, even though every one of us actually experiences it and the scientific explanation of life does nothing to add to that. I firmly believe that ‘Life’ itself is something way beyond the mechanics of creating DNA and living cells, all we are doing is creating vehicles for life to enter into.