Science and Creativity from Studio 360: the art of innovation. A sculpture unlocks a secret of cell structure, a tornado forms in a can, and a child's toy gets sent into orbit. Exploring science as a creative act since 2005. Produced by PRI and WNYC, and supported in part by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.
Nearly a decade after the human genome was decoded, scientists are only now beginning to understand its implications. One of the leading thinkers in this field is the biotech entrepreneur Gregory Stock. A biophysicist by training, his 2002 book Redesigning Humans: Our Inevitable Genetic Future makes the case that full-scale genetic engineering is on the way — whether we like it or not.
And, Stock believes, if the US doesn’t lead the way in developing those advances, other nations will. “Between a third and two-thirds of the population — and even higher if you look at China or Thailand and other eastern cultures — of parents say if they could enhance the genetics of their children, enhance their either cognitive or physical capabilities, they would absolutely do it."
But engineering traits to “improve” people remains a thorny issue. “It sounds so compelling, ‘take out a little bit of this, that, it’s going to be the best of you,’” Stock says, “but actually we don't have a clue what creates exceptional capabilities."
While Stock’s attitude is full-speed ahead, he admits, “it’s going to get weird."…read more