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Beyond the Genome: the challenge of synthetic biology

BIOS public debate

Date: Wednesday 24 October 2007
Time: 7-8.30pm
Venue: Old Theatre, Old Building
Speakers: Professor Sarah Franklin, Professor Peter Lipton, Professor Chris Mason, Dr J Craig Venter
Chair: Professor George Gaskell

The 1970s introduced genetic modification, the 1990s cloning and GM food, and the human genome was sequenced in 2000. Synthetic biology is heralded as the next frontier. But what is synthetic biology and how do we imagine its future directions? What are the implications of this new field for scientists, lawyers, regulators and ethicists? What social and political challenges does it pose and what role will the social sciences, the humanities and the public play in shaping the direction of this new field? The expert panel will debate these issues with the audience.

Professor Sarah Franklin is Associate Director of BIOS, Professor in Sociology and Convenor for the MSc in Biomedicine, Bioscience and Society at LSE. Peter Lipton is head of the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, Cambridge University. Chris Mason is head of the Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine Bioprocessing Unit at UCL. J Craig Venter is founder, chairman and president of the J Craig Venter Institute.

This event has been organised in conjunction with the Royal Society of Arts and Penguin Books, publishers of Craig Venter's autobiography A Life Decoded.

This event is free and open to all with no ticket required. Entry is on a first come, first served basis. For more information, email events@lse.ac.uk or call 020 7955 6043.

Media queries: please contact the Press Office if you would like to reserve a press seat or have a media query about this event, email pressoffice@lse.ac.uk or call 020 7955 7060.