Tuesday, September 28, 2004
Get ready for biometrics at work
target=_blank>IT directors across Europe are bracing themselves for the
introduction of biometric technology in the office. An Hitachi Data
Systems' survey found that 65 per cent expect to see iris scanning and
fingerprint recognition systems introduced in the near future. Nearly
half, 44 per cent anticipating the technology being implemented within
two years, and a very excitable five per cent expect deployment in the
next six months.
Voters in four California counties to consider anti-biotech measures
target=_blank>The ballot measures in Butte, Marin and San Luis Obispo
counties don't criminalize genetically engineered agriculture like
Humboldt County is attempting to do. Those three counties have followed
the lead of Mendocino County, which passed the first ban in March,
providing for small fines and the destruction of the biotech crops.
Engineering God in a Petri Dish
target=_blank>On a steep, narrow street above Chinatown works Jonathon
Keats, a tweed-suited, bow-tied 32-year-old who, with assistance from a
phalanx of scientists, is genetically engineering God in his apartment.
Keats, as you may suspect, is not a scientist. He's a conceptual
artist. But legitimate scientists, such as Smithsonian zoologist Mark
Moffett and Berkeley geneticist Tom Cline, happily lend Keats
credibility by helping him design experiments and interpret the
Monday, September 27, 2004
Can biotech crops be good neighbors?
target=_blank>Farmers, especially those raising organic crops, worry
that they will lose sales from what they call contamination.
Environmentalists worry that modified genes could escape from crops
into weeds, wreaking ecological havoc. And once a gene has escaped,
they say, there is no way to recall it.
Monsanto Gets Tough
target=_blank>The company, which has increasingly made its mark -- and
its profits --Â selling genetically altered seeds, is calling on South
American governments to pay their fair share of royalties on soybeans
grown using Monsanto seeds
15 Injured in French Protest Against Genetically Modified Crops
target=_blank>Protest organizers said police fired tear gas to disperse
a group of about 400 activists who were trying to stage their protest
in a field of bio-engineered corn near Valdivienne in central
Vatican Urges Further Study of Genetically Engineered Food
-921B94DDDF8AA84B" target=_blank>Efforts to combat world hunger have
led to increased attention on biotechnology, not only by farmers
looking to produce more and better quality food, but now also by the
Vatican. Church officials said at a recent U.S.- and Vatican-sponsored
conference on the subject that it is a moral imperative to investigate
the potential of this technology to meet global food needs.
A Novel, Safer Strategy For Regulating Gene Expression
target=_blank>Researchers at Children's Hospital Boston and Harvard
Medical School have created a novel, elegant, and safer system for
controlling gene expression â turning genes on and off as needed â that
involves an intervention as simple as giving a drug. Potentially, with
this technique, a gene could even be activated by natural conditions in
the body â for example, in a diabetic patient, a rise in glucose
concentration would automatically turn on the gene responsible for
Spain to authorise stem cell research
spain_health_biotech_040927180733" target=_blank>Spain will permit
embryonic stem cell research from the end of next month, the Spanish
health minister said.
-1150-902F83414B7F4945" target=_blank>The role that genes play in
religion is a fascinating question that's ripe for the asking.
Psychologists, neurologists and even evolutionary biologists have
offered insights about how spiritual behaviors and beliefs emerge from
the brain. It is reasonable to ask, as Hamer does, whether certain
genes play a significant role in faith. But he is a long way from
providing an answer.
Sunday, September 26, 2004
Researching the weapons of the future: genetically modified bioweapons
jcbw040914_1_n.shtml" target=_blank>As one of the most rapidly moving
areas of scientific research today, biotechnology presents the most
immediate emerging threat for weapons development.
Friday, September 24, 2004
Art & Biotech Colloquium in Montreal
target=_blank>During this colloquium, international theorists and
artists will explore issues in biotech by presenting research and
artworks situated at the intersection of art, science and artificial
Thursday, September 23, 2004
Modified mosquito genes to beat malaria
Coming soon to a jungle near you — mosquitoes genetically engineered so they cannot give people malaria. But this time scientists want to do it right.
More on Gene Flow of GMO Crops
Biotech grass 'gene flow' underscores growing concern
Gene flow' underscores growing concern over biotech crops
Gene-Modified Grass Spreads Far, US Study Finds
Biotech grass breeding raises concerns manufacturers can't control pollen
Genetic traits spread to non-engineered papayas in Hawaii
Horizontal Gene Transfer
Advances in genetic testing challenge doctor-patient confidentiality
channel_id=7&news_id=4844" target=_blank>Normally, under medical
ethics, doctors are obligated to keep a patient's health information
confidential - even after the patient dies. This duty is central to the
Wednesday, September 22, 2004
Human genome hits halfway mark
target=_blank>They have just published a detailed run-down of a 12th
chromosome - known as chromosome five - which means there are just 12
left to complete.
Poplar DNA code cracked - a step in combating global warming?
knowledge of the poplar DNA is an important step in the research into
âtree-specific genesâ, which can be used to make trees even better air
purifiers, to have them grow more quickly, or to make them easier to
process into paper. NOTE: check the sponsors
China achieves major breakthrough in transgenic cotton
target=_blank>The Transgenic Tech System of Cotton Commercialization
was declared a success. Based on this system, 8 new cotton varieties
have been developed and more than 32 million mu of land have grown
insect-resistant transgenic cotton.
Wind carries GM pollen record distances
target=_blank>Pollen from a genetically modified grass has blown on the
wind and pollinated other grasses up to 21 kilometres away, says a new
study. This distance is âmuch further than previously measuredâ, say
the authors, and is thought to be a record for any GM pollen.
Monday, September 20, 2004
Californians to Vote on Stem Cell Research Funds
target=_blank>The federal government spent $25 million last year on
studies involving human embryonic stem cells. But California, in an act
of political and scientific rebellion against limits on stem cell
research imposed by the Bush White House, may be on the verge of
spending $300 million a year in each of the next 10 years on such
Friday, September 17, 2004
target=_blank>The subject of the Bio-Blurb Show centers around aspects
of the growing trend between art and science, and most particularly the
biological and genetic sciences. Hosted by Suzanne Anker, the show
features a roundtable discussion of the social issues that are affected
by genetic engineering, forensics, new reproductive technologies, the
patenting of life forms and related "Art-Sci" subjects.
Sunday, September 12, 2004
Italian minister in trouble
target=_blank>Politicians and scientists in Italy are calling for the
resignation of health minister Girolamo Sirchia this week, over a
contentious law on assisted reproduction. The law, strongly supported
by Sirchia, was approved by the Italian legislature last December. It
has been branded "medieval" by female parliamentarians and gained
worldwide condemnation by scientists.
Should we give the biotechies money to burn?
biotechnology companies are unfairly hampered," she says. "Companies in
the US enjoy greater flexibility in raising new equity capital.
Bioscience is a global business and, therefore, we believe that it is
important that there is a level playing field financially for
GM fish produce cheap blood-clotting agent
target=_blank>A human blood-clotting factor used to treat some people
with haemophilia and accident victims suffering serious bleeding has
been produced using genetically modified fish.
Sowing GM crops in Egypt
target=_blank>Anticipating the important role the burgeoning science of
genetics would eventually come to play in agriculture, the Ministry of
Agriculture partnered with USAID to establish the center. Now, nearly
15 years later, it may be on the verge of launching the country's first
commercially grown genetically modified crop, a strain of cotton that
could save the industry millions of pounds every year by boosting
output and virtually eliminating chemical crop spraying.
Europe urged to embrace GM foods
major conference on genetically-modified crops has opened in Germany
with calls for Europe to embrace GM food more enthusiastically.
Genetic Determinist Digest
target=_blank>Genetic studies hint at origins of 'Celtic' nations
2002033492_fatresistant12.html" target=_blank>Jeans feeling a little
too tight? It could be all in your genes
probably the Clinton genes, not the diet
Divergence, Monsanto collaborate to develop nematode-resistant soybeans
target=_blank>As part of the collaboration, Monsanto will gain
exclusive rights to Divergence's existing technology in this area and
will provide funding for ongoing research performed by Divergence.
Divergence will also receive milestone payments based on research and
development success, and royalties once products reach the
US diplomat urges Qatar to back resolution banning human cloning
target=_blank>A senior US diplomat on Thursday called for Qatar to
support the resolution banning the cloning of humans while encouraging
the country to join the United Nations Commission on Human Rights.
DNA fingerprinting, technique that revolutionized policing, turns 20
g090810A.html" target=_blank>One Monday morning 20 years ago, Alec
Jeffreys stumbled upon DNA fingerprinting, identifying the patterns of
genetic material that are unique to almost every individual. The
discovery revolutionized everything from criminal investigations to
Saturday, September 11, 2004
Creative Biotech: A User's Manual
Biotech Hobbyist collective includes a multi-disciplinary group of
[media] artists, scientists, engineers, activists, and cultural
theorists that is dedicated to working with biotechnology in a creative
and critical way. Exploring the idea of 'garage biotechnology' - a
hybrid based upon the 'garage computing' movements of the 1970s, the
Biotech Hobbyist project aims to encourage an ethical engagement with
biotechnology in the non-specialist public. (by artists Natalie
Jeremijenko & Eugene Thacker)
Sunday, September 05, 2004
BioWar: A biodefense lab for Montana?
target=_blank>The Montana lawsuit is one skirmish in an expanding
battle over the location and safety of a new network of labs being
built to study the world's deadliest germs and viruses. More than a
dozen such labs are planned across the country and organizations in
communities from Boston to Davis, Calif., have sprung up to oppose
Fear follows plan to build more deadly-disease labs
MNGEV8CDPT1.DTL" target=_blank>U.S. Department of Health officials say
the planned National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories at
Boston University is critical to America's war on terror.
US Non-lethal Bioweapons Documents Censored by Marine Corps
target=_blank>The records that were removed date from 1994 and describe
US Army "non-lethal" chemical weapons programs. They propose research
and development activities. They are titled Antipersonnel Chemical
Immobilizers: Synthetic Opiods, Antipersonnel Calmative Agents, and
Demonstration of Chemical Immobilizers.
Thai cabinet overturns GMO approval
target=_blank>Thailand's cabinet decided on Tuesday to keep a
three-year ban on planting crops using genetically modified organisms
(GMO), overturning a decision by a panel chaired by Prime Minister
COUNTY VOTES TO BAN GENETICALLY ENGINEERED CROPS AND ANIMALS
target=_blank>Today Trinity County, California became only the second
county in the nation to ban the growing of genetically engineered (GE)
crops and animals.
Go-ahead for GM insect release
target=_blank>The first release of a genetically modified insect is
expected to take place in the United States this summer. A moth has
been engineered to contain a gene from a jellyfish in the first stage
of a genetic experiment designed to eradicate the cotton-destroying
pest from the wild.