Craig Venter Declares Creation of Artificial Life

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Tony Rook
Tony Rook's picture
Craig Venter Declares Creation of Artificial Life

Craig Venter will be announcing this today at his Genomes, Medicine, and the Environment Conference in San Diego today. He is also trying to patent the new species he and his team have dubbed Mycoplasma laboratorium, which they hope becomes a microbe-manufacturing plant for a wide variety of applications including biofuels.

Check out the story on the Guardian I am creating artificial life, declares US gene pioneer

R Bishop
R Bishop's picture
Im not sure whether to jump

Im not sure whether to jump for joy or be really scared.


ImAScientist's picture
"Governments, and society in

"Governments, and society in general, is way behind the ball. This is a wake-up call - what does it mean to create new life forms in a test-tube?"

I'm just scared that we are already trying to patent genes. There are pro's and con's for doing so, but I feel like ethisicts and others are indeed really far behind science. I hope this stirs up some controversy and gets the ball moving on the ethical implications of this amazing feat of science.

Tony Rook
Tony Rook's picture
Aside from ethics... Venter

Aside from ethics... Venter encoded five "watermarks" into this first synthetic genome. To figure out the coded message, one had to determine the amino acid sequence coded for by the watermarks to decipher the messages.

David Wheeler of Wired Science and Tao Tao of the NCBI discovered the watermarks which read...


To find out who these people are and why they have been encoded in the first synthetic genome read Wired Science Reveals Secret Codes in Craig Venter's Artificial Genome

Additional information can be found at

New York Times - The Secret to (Synthetic) Life

Henry Blog: Stamping his mark - on the bacterial genome

Then come to think about it again, is there an ethical dilemma by encoding your name within the first synthetic genome?