Thursday, May 20, 2010

First Synthetically Created Artificial Life Made by Humans

It is finished...

OK, so maybe that line from the Bible is a bit over-the-top, but the implications of the announcement are far from tiny. Click the above link to the abstract from Science.  The full-text article is available free, so go ahead and read the whole paper.

Craig Ventner's group has managed to put together a completely human-synthesized bacterial genome, then actually gotten it to work inside a cell. The cell has metabolic activity exactly as expected, and it reproduces itself faithfully.  The only DNA in the cell is from the manufactured genome -- complete with unique markers and polymorphisms to identify it.

While this isn't a 100% synthetic organism, it is by far the largest step taken towards that goal.

Cue the creationists saying "See, it took someone intelligent to make this happen."

Of course, one could respond that since it only took a human level intelligence, then maybe the Intelligent Designer isn't all that smart to begin with.

1 comment: said...


Watch for "ID" people cling to "information/programming" that Craig Venter mentioned in one of his interviews.

You see, this proves the Invisible Pink Unicorn created the Universe and all in it! - can you disprove it?