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1.
Rev. bioét. derecho ; (47): 5-15, nov. 2019. ilus
Artigo em Inglês | IBECS | ID: ibc-184862

RESUMO

DNA read and write technologies have accelerated biotechnology at an unprecedented pace. This enhanced capacity to engineer living beings has accelerated not only scientific research, but also the translation into novel therapies. New approved medicinal products include the correction of the diseased genome and synthetic enhancement to fight diseases. These practices are widely supported socially and scientifically. Applications beyond therapy have also be attempted. In 2018, researcher He Jiankui reported on the edition of human germline during the Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing. On the other hand, during the last years, there have also been attempts at somatic genetic enhancement without the provision of detailed outcomes. Reading and writing DNA empowers us to change our world, even ourselves. The social benefits may be enormous. We need to accelerate the debate, including the stakeholders, to foster a responsible use of these technologies and maximize the positive impact on society


Las tecnologías de lectura y escritura de ADN han acelerado la biotecnología a un ritmo sin precedentes. Esta capacidad mejora para diseñar seres vivos no solo ha acelerado la investigación científica, sino también la translación a terapias novedosas. Nuevos medicamentos aprobados incluyen la corrección del genoma enfermo y la mejora sintética para combatir las enfermedades. Estas prácticas son ampliamente apoyadas social y científicamente. También se han intentado aplicaciones más allá de la terapia. En 2018, el investigador He Jiankui informó sobre la edición de la línea germinal humana durante la Segunda Cumbre Internacional sobre la Edición del Genoma Humano. Por otro lado, en los últimos años también se han producido intentos de mejora genética somática. Leer y escribir ADN nos permite cambiar nuestro planeta, incluso cambiarnos a nosotros mismos. Los beneficios sociales


Les tecnologies de lectura i escriptura d'ADN han accelerat la biotecnologia a un ritme sense precedents. Aquesta capacitat millorada per dissenyar éssers vius no només ha accelerat la recerca científica, sinó també la translació a teràpies noves. Nous medicaments aprovats inclouen la correcció del genoma malalt i la millora sintètica per a combatre les malalties. Aquestes pràctiques són àmpliament recolzades social i científicament. També s'han intentat aplicacions més enllà de la teràpia. El 2018, l'investigador He Jiankui va informar sobre l'edició de la línia germinal humana durant la Segona Cimera Internacional sobre l'Edició del Genoma Humà. D'altra banda, en els últims anys també s'han produït intents de millora genètica somàtica. Llegir i escriure ADN ens permet canviar el nostre planeta, fins i tot canviar-nos a nosaltres mateixos. Els beneficis socials poden ser enormes. Necessitem accelerar el debat, incloent-hi les parts interessades a fi de fomentar un ús responsable d'aquestes tecnologies i maximitzar-ne l'impacte positiu en la societat


Assuntos
Humanos , Edição de Genes , Pesquisa Médica Translacional , Biologia Sintética/ética , Biotecnologia/ética , Biotecnologia/instrumentação , Biotecnologia/legislação & jurisprudência , Avaliação da Tecnologia Biomédica/legislação & jurisprudência
2.
Sci Eng Ethics ; 25(1): 97-111, 2019 02.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29076055

RESUMO

Synthetic biology opens up the possibility of producing new entities not found in nature, whose classification as organisms or machines has been debated. In this paper we are focusing on the delimitation of the moral value of synthetic products, in order to establish the ethically right way to behave towards them. In order to do so, we use personalism as our ethical framework. First, we examine how we can distinguish between organisms and machines. Next, we discuss whether the products of synthetic biology can be considered organisms at all and assess what their moral value is and how should we behave towards them. Finally, we discuss the hypothetical case of synthetic humans.


Assuntos
Bioética , Vida , Status Moral , Biologia Sintética/ética , Humanos , Princípios Morais , Filosofia
3.
Sci Eng Ethics ; 25(1): 33-52, 2019 02.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29255953

RESUMO

Advances at the interface between the biological sciences and engineering are giving rise to emerging research fields such as synthetic biology. Harnessing the potential of synthetic biology requires timely and adequate translation into clinical practice. However, the translational research enterprise is currently facing fundamental obstacles that slow down the transition of scientific discoveries from the laboratory to the patient bedside. These obstacles including scarce financial resources and deficiency of organizational and logistic settings are widely discussed as primary impediments to translational research. In addition, a number of socio-ethical considerations inherent in translational research need to be addressed. As the translational capacity of synthetic biology is tightly linked to its social acceptance and ethical approval, ethical limitations may-together with financial and organizational problems-be co-determinants of suboptimal translation. Therefore, an early assessment of such limitations will contribute to proactively favor successful translation and prevent the promising potential of synthetic biology from remaining under-expressed. Through the discussion of two case-specific inventions in synthetic biology and their associated ethical implications, we illustrate the socio-ethical challenges ahead in the process of implementing synthetic biology into clinical practice. Since reducing the translational lag is essential for delivering the benefits of basic biomedical research to society at large and promoting global health, we advocate a moral obligation to accelerating translational research: the "translational imperative."


Assuntos
Invenções/ética , Biologia Sintética/ética , Pesquisa Médica Translacional/ética , Bioética , Humanos
7.
Life Sci Soc Policy ; 14(1): 21, 2018 Sep 10.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30198056

RESUMO

The emerging field of synthetic biology, the (re-)designing and construction of biological parts, devices and systems for useful purposes, may simultaneously resolve some issues and raise others. In order to develop applications robustly and in the public interest, it is important to organize reflexive strategies of assessment and engagement in early stages of development. Against this backdrop, initiatives related to the concept of Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) have also appeared. This paper describes such an initiative: the construction of future scenarios to explore the plausibility and desirability of potential synthetic biology innovations. We guided teams of synthetic biology students who participated in the large international Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) competition, in constructing scenarios aimed at exploring the plausibility and desirability of potential synthetic biology innovations. In this paper we aim to examine to what extent, and how, constructing such future scenarios contributes to RRI. In order to do so, we conducted observations and interviews to understand what kind of learning and reflection was promoted by constructing the scenarios in terms of four dimensions, which are discussed prominently in the literature on RRI: anticipation, inclusion, reflexivity and responsiveness. While we focus on how constructing future scenarios can contribute to strengthening RRI at a project (and individual) level, we also consider how far our experiment may foster RRI in the iGEM competition in general, and perhaps even inspire constructive collaboration between 'social scientists' and 'natural scientists' in the context of larger scientific research programmes.


Assuntos
Ética em Pesquisa , Engenharia Genética/ética , Biologia Sintética/ética , Engenharia Genética/tendências , Humanos , Estudantes , Biologia Sintética/tendências
8.
Trends Biotechnol ; 36(10): 985-987, 2018 10.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30244697

RESUMO

The Human Practice (HP) work of the international Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) competition can serve as a great example of integrating ethical considerations into synthetic biology research. By highlighting three independent perspectives from those involved in various aspects of iGEM, here we aim to provide an informative picture of how ethical issues are approached within the iGEM competition.


Assuntos
Engenharia Genética/ética , Biologia Sintética/ética , Humanos
10.
Rev. bioét. derecho ; (43): 9-31, jul. 2018.
Artigo em Espanhol | IBECS | ID: ibc-176762

RESUMO

El origen de la vida es una de las temáticas que más fascinación despierta, no solo en el mundo científico. Sin embargo, pocas materias pueden resultar más frustrantes a la hora de ser abordadas. Pues bien, analizaremos en el presente artículo cuáles son los criterios de distinción entre lo vivo y lo inerte. En aras de clarificar las diferentes posiciones hemos creado un modelo con dos variables, "materia viva"-"materia inerte", que arroja un total de cuatro combinaciones posibles. Cada una de estas combinaciones representa un paradigma de pensamiento con sus propios axiomas, preguntas a resolver, anomalías y contradicciones. Con el modelo pretendemos clasificar todas las posiciones existentes en lo referente a la aparición de la vida, de forma que cualquier autor que haya reflexionado sobre la cuestión pueda sentirse identificado con alguna de las combinaciones y observar in situ su propia Weltanschauung, incluidas las limitaciones, aporías y cuestiones irresolubles


Abortion is analyzed as a social good. This article considers the different views society has regarding abortion and its regulation. The positions of different social actors are criticized, when related to the view of the Catholic Church or pro-life positions, for social actors should not be influenced by their personal beliefs but by the requirements of public policy and people's needs. The need of de-penalizing abortion is defended based on public health and women's dignity


L'origen de la vida és una de les temàtiques que més fascinació desvetlla, i no solament en el món científic. No obstant això, poques matèries poden resultar més frustrants a l'hora de ser abordades. En el present article s'analitzen quins són els criteris de distinció entre el viu i l'inert. A fi d'esclarir les diferents posicions hem creat un model amb dues variables, "matèria viva" i "matèria inert", la qual cosa dóna quatre combinacions possibles. Cadascuna d'aquestes combinacions representa un paradigma de pensament amb els seus propis axiomes, preguntes per resoldre, anomalies i contradiccions. Amb el model pretenem classificar totes les posicions existents sobre l'aparició de la vida, de manera que qualsevol autor que hagi reflexionat sobre la qüestió pugui sentir-se identificat amb alguna de les combinacions i observar in situ la seva pròpia Weltanschauung, incloses les limitacions, les apories i les qüestions irresolubles


Assuntos
Origem da Vida , Entropia , Biologia Sintética/ética , Biologia Sintética/legislação & jurisprudência , Traços de História de Vida , Antropologia
11.
Life Sci Soc Policy ; 14(1): 12, 2018 Jun 04.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29862436

RESUMO

The extent to which machine metaphors are used in synthetic biology is striking. These metaphors contain a specific perspective on organisms as well as on scientific and technological progress. Expressions such as "genetically engineered machine", "genetic circuit", and "platform organism", taken from the realms of electronic engineering, car manufacturing, and information technology, highlight specific aspects of the functioning of living beings while at the same time hiding others, such as evolutionary change and interdependencies in ecosystems. Since these latter aspects are relevant for, for example, risk evaluation of uncontained uses of synthetic organisms, it is ethically imperative to resist the thrust of machine metaphors in this respect. In addition, from the perspective of the machine metaphor viewing an entity as a moral agent or patient becomes dubious. If one were to regard living beings, including humans, as machines, it becomes difficult to justify ascriptions of moral status. Finally, the machine metaphor reinforces beliefs in the potential of synthetic biology to play a decisive role in solving societal problems, and downplays the role of alternative technological, and social and political measures.


Assuntos
Ética em Pesquisa , Robótica , Biologia Sintética/ética , Humanos , Terminologia como Assunto
12.
Life Sci Soc Policy ; 14(1): 14, 2018 Jun 24.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29936670

RESUMO

Synthetic biology (SynBio) represents a relatively young field of research which has developed into an important scientific endeavour. Characterised by a high degree of interdisciplinary work crossing disciplinary boundaries, such as biology, mathematics and engineering, SynBio has been, since its beginning, devoted to creating new biological functions, metabolic pathways or even minimal organisms. Although its often-articulated aim of developing new forms of life has so far not been archived, SynBio nowadays represents a well-established biotechnological approach and it has also attracted public concern, especially since Craig Venter's work on Mycoplasma Mycoides JCVI-syn1.0. Taking these developments as a starting point, the paper empirically investigates the metaphorical representations of SynBio in two leading German media publications, the daily newspaper Die Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and the weekly magazine Der Spiegel between 2000 and 2010. Using a novel combination of metaphor and co-occurrence analysis, the paper engages in a systematic examination of implicit moral implications inherent in linguistic images permeating this news coverage. It demonstrates a method of how media-metaphorical representations and their moral implications of SynBio could analytically be revealed and analysed. In doing so, it aims at contributing to empirical ethical analyses of the news coverage on SynBio in particular and offers an approach that methodologically adds to literature on responsible language use, which is emerging in science and technology studies and ethical analyses of new technologies.


Assuntos
Meios de Comunicação de Massa , Comportamento Social , Biologia Sintética/ética , Terminologia como Assunto , Alemanha , Humanos
13.
Life Sci Soc Policy ; 14(1): 10, 2018 May 14.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29761363

RESUMO

Metaphors allow us to come to terms with abstract and complex information, by comparing it to something which is structured, familiar and concrete. Although modern science is "iconoclastic", as Gaston Bachelard phrases it (i.e. bent on replacing living entities by symbolic data: e.g. biochemical and mathematical symbols and codes), scientists are at the same time prolific producers of metaphoric images themselves. Synthetic biology is an outstanding example of a technoscientific discourse replete with metaphors, including textual metaphors such as the "Morse code" of life, the "barcode" of life and the "book" of life. This paper focuses on a different type of metaphor, however, namely on the archetypal metaphor of the mandala as a symbol of restored unity and wholeness. Notably, mandala images emerge in textual materials (papers, posters, PowerPoints, etc.) related to one of the new "frontiers" of contemporary technoscience, namely the building of a synthetic cell: a laboratory artefact that functions like a cell and is even able to replicate itself. The mandala symbol suggests that, after living systems have been successfully reduced to the elementary building blocks and barcodes of life, the time has now come to put these fragments together again. We can only claim to understand life, synthetic cell experts argue, if we are able to technically reproduce a fully functioning cell. This holistic turn towards the cell as a meaningful whole (a total work of techno-art) also requires convergence at the "subject pole": the building of a synthetic cell as a practice of the self, representing a turn towards integration, of multiple perspectives and various forms of expertise.


Assuntos
Células Artificiais , Pesquisa Biomédica/ética , Pesquisa Biomédica/métodos , Biologia Sintética/ética , Biologia Sintética/métodos , Humanos
14.
Int J Biol Macromol ; 112: 1278-1288, 2018 Jun.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29371150

RESUMO

The discovery of genes responsible for the production of bioactive metabolites via metabolic pathways combined with the advances in synthetic biology tools, has allowed the establishment of numerous microbial cell factories, for instance the yeast cell factories, for the manufacture of highly useful metabolites from renewable biomass. Genome mining and metagenomics are two platforms provide base-line data for reconstruction of genomes and metabolomes which is based in the development of synthetic/semi-synthetic genomes for marine natural products discovery. Engineered biofilms are being innovated on synthetic biology platform using genetic circuits and cell signalling systems as represillators controlling biofilm formation. Recombineering is a process of homologous recombination mediated genetic engineering, includes insertion, deletion or modification of any sequence specifically. Although this discipline considered new to the scientific domain, this field has now developed as promising endeavor on the accomplishment of sustainable exploitation of marine natural products.


Assuntos
Organismos Aquáticos/química , Biologia Sintética/métodos , Biofilmes , Produtos Biológicos/farmacologia , Engenharia Metabólica , Robótica , Biologia Sintética/ética
15.
Sci Eng Ethics ; 24(6): 1673-1696, 2018 12.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28952071

RESUMO

The Safe-by-Design approach in synthetic biology holds the promise of designing the building blocks of life in an organism guided by the value of safety. This paves a new way for using biotechnologies safely. However, the Safe-by-Design approach moves the bulk of the responsibility for safety to the actors in the research and development phase. Also, it assumes that safety can be defined and understood by all stakeholders in the same way. These assumptions are problematic and might actually undermine safety. This research explores these assumptions through the use of a Group Decision Room. In this set up, anonymous and non-anonymous deliberation methods are used for different stakeholders to exchange views. During the session, a potential synthetic biology application is used as a case for investigation: the Food Warden, a biosensor contained in meat packaging for indicating the freshness of meat. Participants discuss what potential issues might arise, how responsibilities should be distributed in a forward-looking way, who is to blame if something would go wrong. They are also asked what safety and responsibility mean at different phases, and for different stakeholders. The results of the session are not generalizable, but provide valuable insights. Issues of safety cannot all be taken care of in the R&D phase. Also, when things go wrong, there are proximal and distal causes to consider. In addition, capacities of actors play an important role in defining their responsibilities. Last but not least, this research provides a new perspective on the role of instruction manuals in achieving safety.


Assuntos
Atitude , Biotecnologia/ética , Inocuidade dos Alimentos , Indústria de Embalagem de Carne , Pesquisadores/ética , Responsabilidade Social , Biologia Sintética/ética , Técnicas Biossensoriais , Tomada de Decisões , Ética em Pesquisa , Humanos , Participação dos Interessados
16.
Health Care Anal ; 26(4): 310-325, 2018 Dec.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27942987

RESUMO

New health technologies are rapidly emerging from various areas of bioscience research, such as gene editing, regenerative medicine and synthetic biology. These technologies raise promising medical possibilities but also a range of ethical considerations. Apart from the issues involved in considering whether novel health technologies can or should become part of mainstream medical treatment once established, the process of research translation to develop such therapies itself entails particular ethical concerns. In this paper I use synthetic biology as an example of a new and largely unexplored area of health technology to consider the ways in which novel health technologies are likely to emerge and the ethical challenges these will present. I argue that such developments require us to rethink conventional attitudes towards clinical research, the roles of doctors/researchers and patients/participants with respect to research, and the relationship between science and society; and that a broader framework is required to address the plurality of stakeholder roles and interests involved in the development of treatments based on novel technologies.


Assuntos
Pesquisa Biomédica/ética , Biologia Sintética/ética , Biologia Sintética/organização & administração , Terapias em Estudo/ética , Pesquisa Médica Translacional/organização & administração , Atitude , Pesquisa Biomédica/organização & administração , Ética Médica , Humanos , Internacionalidade , Turismo Médico/ética , Aceitação pelo Paciente de Cuidados de Saúde , Participação do Paciente , Médicos/ética , Papel Profissional , Pesquisadores/ética , Medição de Risco , Pesquisa Médica Translacional/ética
17.
Hastings Cent Rep ; 47 Suppl 2: S48-S53, 2017 Jul.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28746756

RESUMO

Among the most egregious and discouraging problems of conservation is the rapidly escalating human-caused species extinction rate. "De-extinction" refers to the application of certain cutting-edge techniques for the supposed recovery of lost species and gives the impression that scientists, enlightened and empowered by the miracles of technology, are coming to the rescue. "De-extinction" is the latest example of a long play of language that has given conservation efforts a tragically false sense of accomplishment and has worsened the conservation crisis. De-extinction is the tip of an intellectual iceberg that sits atop of a host of profoundly questionable value systems, expectations, attitudes, and priorities that elude and bewitch critical reflection. It gives the impression that extinction is reversible and, thus, diminishes the gravity of the human annihilation of species. Here, we examine how the language of de-extinction influences attitudes, shapes thoughts and imagination, and creates ethical blindness. The language developing around "de-extinction" reveals what is in fact a profound intellectual crisis at the foundation of conservation. The underlying challenge is to find the language that will articulate and inspire the radical and indispensable change needed to come to grips with the value of nature.


Assuntos
Conservação dos Recursos Naturais/métodos , Extinção Biológica , Biologia Sintética/ética , Biologia Sintética/métodos , Biodiversidade , Espécies em Perigo de Extinção , Humanos , Terminologia como Assunto
18.
Hastings Cent Rep ; 47 Suppl 2: S5-S8, 2017 Jul.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28746757

RESUMO

Decades of globally coordinated work in conservation have failed to slow the loss of biodiversity. To do better-even if that means nothing more than failing less spectacularly-bolder thinking is necessary. One of the first possible conservation applications of synthetic biology to be debated is the use of genetic tools to resurrect once-extinct species. Since the currency of conservation is biodiversity and the discipline of conservation biology was formed around the prevention of species extinctions, the prospect of reversing extinctions might have been expected to generate unreserved enthusiasm. But it was not universal acclaim that greeted the coming-out party for "de-extinction" that was the TEDx conference and accompanying National Geographic feature in 2013. Why the concern, the skepticism, even the hostility among many conservationists about the idea of restoring lost species? And how does this professional concern relate to public perception and support for conservation? This essay explores the barriers to the acceptance of risky new genomic-based conservation tools by considering five key areas and associated questions that could be addressed in relation to any new conservation tool. I illustrate these using the specific example of de-extinction, and in doing so, I consider whether de-extinction would necessarily be the best first point of engagement between conservation biology and synthetic biology.


Assuntos
Biodiversidade , Conservação dos Recursos Naturais/métodos , Extinção Biológica , Biologia Sintética/métodos , Animais , Clonagem de Organismos/ética , Espécies em Perigo de Extinção , Edição de Genes/ética , Humanos , Princípios Morais , Opinião Pública , Biologia Sintética/ética
19.
Hastings Cent Rep ; 47 Suppl 2: S30-S36, 2017 Jul.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28746759

RESUMO

I have been involved with the current interest in de-extinction since early 2012, nearly its beginning. I have given a lot of thought to the potential risks and benefits of de-extinction. But only recently, after deep immersion in discussions around CRISPR-Cas9, the hottest new tool in bioscience since polymerase chain reaction, have I thought about a more fundamental question: how, if at all, is de-extinction special? Are "revived species" just another kind of genetically modified organism, raising essentially the same general concerns? I answer, for the most part, yes. De-extinction is not (very) special. New biotechnologies are giving humans even more power to change the biosphere but more directly, more quickly, and more utterly than ever before. De-extinction is just one possible, and probably small, use of those technologies. Our attention, for the most part, should be on the bigger issues of regulating this power, rather than focusing specifically on their application to de-extinction.


Assuntos
Conservação dos Recursos Naturais/métodos , Edição de Genes/métodos , Biodiversidade , Extinção Biológica , Edição de Genes/ética , Humanos , Princípios Morais , Opinião Pública , Biologia Sintética/ética , Biologia Sintética/métodos
20.
Hastings Cent Rep ; 47 Suppl 2: S43-S47, 2017 Jul.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28746760

RESUMO

One interesting feature of de-extinction-particularly with respect to long-extinct species such as the passenger pigeon, thylacine, and mammoth-is that it does not fit neatly into the primary rationales for adopting novel ecosystem-management and species-conservation technologies and strategies: efficiency and necessity. The efficiency rationale is that the new technology or strategy enables conservation biologists to do what they already do more effectively. Why should researchers embrace novel information technologies? Because they allow scientists to better track, monitor, map, aggregate, and analyze species behaviors, biological systems, and human-environment interactions. This enables better decision-making about how to protect species, which areas to conserve, and how to reduce anthropogenic impacts on ecological systems. Many projects in conservation genomics are justified in this way. But de-extinction is not a more efficient or necessary means to some conservation aim that is already recognized as acceptable or important. In fact, because it is focused on reconstituting approximations of nonexistent species, rather than maintaining extant ones, the social and ethical assessment of de-extinction is not limited to asking whether it is a good means. We can ask as well whether de-extinction is a worthwhile "conservation" goal in the first place.


Assuntos
Conservação dos Recursos Naturais/métodos , Extinção Biológica , Biodiversidade , Clonagem de Organismos/ética , Espécies em Perigo de Extinção , Edição de Genes/ética , Edição de Genes/métodos , Humanos , Opinião Pública , Biologia Sintética/ética , Biologia Sintética/métodos
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