I was bored at work and came across some interesting articles.
Craig Venter, the guy who sequenced the human genome, started a new company to do synthetic biology for industrial use. Here’s his new company.
They plan to take a simple organism, like E. Coli and selectively remove non-essential genes. Then they’ll insert engineered genes that process chemicals.
Some research projects at MIT are doing similar stuff – here’s a page talking about the changes they’re taking to develop a “base strain” to use for engineering purposes.
Interesting stuff – very sci fi.