Category: Biotechnology/Synthetic Biology

  • Too Many Businesspeople Are Duped by Pseudoscience

    As a scientist who has spent time in the business world, I am continually shocked by how some of the greatest business minds are susceptible to pseudoscience and magical thinking. In a way, it’s not surprising. Businesspeople, and CEOs in particular, must be relentlessly optimistic. When investors are scarce and revenues are dwindling, it is…

  • Why the Pope Should Officially Embrace Biotechnology

    In May 2015, Pope Francis issued an encyclical with the subtitle “On Care for Our Common Home.” The letter addressed various environmental issues, such as pollution and climate change, and it reminded all of us that we are to steward the Earth, not plunder it. The Pope’s missive demonstrates that he is both theologically sound and scientifically…

  • ‘Designer Babies’ Won’t Be a Fad. It’s Too Hard to Create Them

    Intelligence, physical ability, height, skin color and disease risk each are determined by many genes. You can’t get what you want by editing one or two. Read the rest at USA Today.

  • Replace Annual Physicals with Real-Time Biomarker Monitoring

    The annual physical exam is under fire. Increasingly, physicians believe that the yearly ritual of having our bodies poked and prodded is completely useless, save for the fraction of patients who have a chronic illness or predisposition to disease. Worse, the annual physical is estimated to cost our healthcare system approximately $8 billion for arguably…

  • Patent Judges Should Be Scientists, Too

    Patents are the lifeblood of biotechnology, the force that motivates companies to develop innovative medical treatments and bring them to market. The trouble is that these patents must be enforced in a court system that isn’t set up to adjudicate highly technical matters—resulting in rulings that seem arbitrary or even scientifically suspect. Read the rest…

  • Mosquitoes, This Time It Is War

    The Zika virus, which is spreading like wildfire throughout the Americas and is linked to a head-shrinking birth defect called microcephaly, is just the latest in a long list of mosquito-transmitted diseases that make the insects the world’s deadliest animal. It is time to launch a global initiative to eradicate them. Read the rest at USA…

  • Dr. Oz Hires a Clone to Be His ‘Fact-Checker’

    Unfortunately, it appears as if Dr. Oz’s “fact-checker” is just a clone. We could call him Mini-Oz.

  • How Yellowstone Revolutionized Biotechnology

    The beautiful hot springs played a direct role in the biotechnology revolution.

  • Solar Fuel: Converting Sunlight to Alcohol

    It’a a neat trick, but the bioelectrochemical cell essentially takes an inefficient process and reduces its efficiency even further.

  • Sci-Fi Now Reality: Mind Control of Gene Expression

    Brain waves –> Bluetooth (microwave photons) –> Electric current –> Magnetic field –> Another electric current (in the implant) –> Near-infrared photons –> Activation of cellular genetic pathway –> Enzyme produced and secreted into the blood.