Creating The World's First Synthetic Lifeform.

Craig Venter, who became famous for completing a privately-owned map of the human genome in 2000, is spearheading the effort to make the first synthetic lifeform.

Dr. Venter, 59, has since shifted his focus from determining the chemical sequences that encode life to trying to design and build it: "We're going from reading to writing the genetic code," he said in an interview.

Venter's team aim to construct a simpler version of Mycoplasma, a bacterium commonly found in human's reproductive and respiratory tracts. The bacterium has a small genome in the first place: with only one chromosome and 517 genes.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20051219.wxlife19/BNStory/specialScienceandHealth/ (via World Changing)


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