Health & Safety

Jun 162014
 

(Originally published by The Ecologist) by Jim Thomas Disappointment, surprise, disbelief. I think I felt a bit of all of these when I discovered that ‘natural’ soap-maker Ecover had become the first company in the world to reveal its use of synthetic biology in the manufacture of consumer products. The Belgian multinational revealed in April that it has decided to use an algal oil. What it didn’t explain was that the algae oil was produced [More]

Jun 132014
 
That ‘Natural’ Vanilla in Your Ice Cream May Soon Be Coming from a Biotech Lab

Synthetic biology firms’ foray into food and fragrances faces resistance from greens and consumer groups  BY MAUREEN NANDINI MITRA – JUNE 12, 2014 This article was originally published by Earth Island Journal The first time I ever tasted real vanilla was in a scoop of French vanilla ice cream back in 2000 when I was visiting the United States. The ice cream’s smooth, rich flavor was far superior to the artificial, overly-sweet, “vanilla essence” usually [More]

May 302014
 
Companies Quietly Apply Biofuel Tools to Household Products

This article originally appeared in the New York Times. By STEPHANIE STROM MAY 30, 2014 Consumer products containing ingredients made using an advanced form of engineering known as synthetic biology are beginning to show up more often on grocery and department store shelves. A liquid laundry detergent made by Ecover, a Belgian company that makes “green” household products including the Method line, contains an oil produced by algae whose genetic code was altered using synthetic [More]

May 082014
 

A panel of world scientists want to talk to us about synthetic biology. But it’s not clear what we’re allowed to discuss by Jack Stilgoe Originally published by the Guardian on May 8, 2014. The Inter-Academy Panel, a network of the world’s science academies including our own Royal Society, today issued a statement on synthetic biology. A few years ago, biologists in the higher branches of the Royal Society would claim that SynBio didn’t merit [More]

May 082014
 

JULIE STEENHUYSEN This was originally published by Reuters News Service on May 6, 2014. Genome pioneer J. Craig Venter is teaming up with a unit of United Therapeutics Corp. to develop pig lungs that have been genetically altered to be compatible with humans, a feat that, if successful, could address the urgent need for transplant organs for people with end-stage lung disease. Venter’s privately held company Synthetic Genomics Inc. on Tuesday said it has entered [More]

May 082014
 

By ANDREW POLLACK Originally posted by the New York Times on May 7, 2014. Scientists reported Wednesday that they had taken a significant step toward altering the fundamental alphabet of life — creating for the first time an organism with DNA containing artificial genetic code. The accomplishment might eventually lead to organisms that can make medicines or industrial products that cells with only the natural genetic code cannot.. The scientists behind the work at the [More]

Apr 232014
 
Video: How Private is your DNA? with Troy Duster, Jeremy Gruber & Milton Reynolds

Scientists are now able to map our bodies’ DNA with increasing ease and decreasing costs. But what is being done with this information and for whose benefit? How much control do we have over our genetic information and what can we do to protect our privacy? Recorded at the Brower Center Theater 2150 Allston Way in Berkeley, CA on Thursday, April 17, 2014 – 7:30pm. About the Guests: Troy Duster, Emeritus Professor, Sociology, UC Berkeley [More]

Oct 212013
 
Video: Biosafety by the Bay - Becky McClain, Ed Hammond & Gopal Dayaneni

Biotech whistleblower, Becky McClain, and international lab safety expert Ed Hammond talk with Movement Generation’s Gopal Dayaneni about the biolabs targeted for siting throughout the so-called “East Bay Green Corridor,” biolab worker and community safety, and biosecurity. Recorded in Berkeley, California at the Brower Center October 16, 2013 About the Guests: Becky McClain was  a Pfizer, Inc. molecular biologist when she became seriously ill after exposure to genetically modified agents at the pharmaceutical giant’s Connecticut [More]

Oct 082013
 
Pfizer's Wanton Misconduct -  By Becky McClain

Re-posted from: from GeneWatch  This is the story of a whistleblower: me. I was working as a molecular biologist at a Pfizer laboratory. After I raised concerns about worker safety at the lab, I was told to stop documenting the problems I saw; when I continued to raise concerns, another employee was assigned to work on a dangerous genetically engineered virus on my bench without my knowledge; when I became ill and requested records of [More]

Sep 232013
 
Biosafety by the Bay: Becky McClain & Ed Hammond - Wednesday, October 16, 2013 7:30 pm PST

East Bay Conversations in Berkeley and streaming online A video of this event will be posted soon. Biotech whistleblower, Becky McClain, and international lab safety expert Ed Hammond talk with Movement Generation’s Gopal Dayaneni about the biolabs targeted for siting throughout the so-called “East Bay Green Corridor,” biolab worker and community safety, and biosecurity. Brower Center’s Goldman Theater  – 2150 Allston Way, Berkeley Free and Open to the Public Livestream broadcast at www.synbiowatch.org About the [More]