The New E Coli FinePix 100
Today new scientist reported that Chris Voigt and his colleague’s at San Francisco University have successfully created biological photographic film from the E Coli virus. Whilst this bizarre "camera" does take 4 hours to take a picture and will only work in red light, the results are astoundingly detailed. Due to the size of the bacteria, pictures taken have a resolution of 100 million pixels per inch.
Whilst these cameras will never be available in the shops, they are an important step for genetic engineering. Proving that it can be possible to control the activity of specific areas of bacteria using light. This technique could be used in the future on bacteria tailored to produce materials such as protein’s or metals.
Many people (including my esteemed friend, Darkwood) question the ethics of genetic engineering (especially in the hands of the powers that be), its role will be undoubtedly significant in the evolution of modern technology. Tight controls and limited application of future genetic developments will hopefully be sufficient to protect mankind from its own creations. Hopefully the benefits to medicine and material sciences will greatly outweigh any of the drawbacks to this work. But, only time can tell what will become of today’s genetic tinkering, so until then all I can do is point you in the direction of the original new scientist article-
I’d be interested to know what other people’s views are on genetic engineering so feel free to leave your comments below.