The Times' Anjana Ahuja takes J. Craig Venter's latest revelation and breaks it down to some easily understood concepts. Venter is focused on creating synthetic life, taking 400 or so genes and making a microbe of his own design. Built properly, the microbe could be used to create a new generation of clean fuels. And his patent on the work, if granted, would give Venter control of those products and the vast riches they would produce. But the basic research could also point the way to a new generation of bioterror agents, which could have a dramatically different effect on the planet. Still, the work on life's simplest forms does also highlight the extraordinary collection of 30,000 genes that goes into creating a human.
- see the release on the work
- here's the column from The Times