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[APD] Re: glowfish banned
Of course, properly kept, there is little to no risk of contamination. It
is only when some stupid lazy person gets bored of their fish/plants and
flushes them alive, or otherwise allows this contamination, that species
escape. It makes no
I would be very surprised to see *any* fish survive a trip through the
sewer system. Even if the fish could survive the very, very hostile
environment in the piping (black water in sewer lines is _not_ good for
anything besides some strains of bacteria), the treatment plant at the end
would finish it off. In order for a fish to be released into a wild
population it would need to be placed in a stream, lake, pond, or other
natural waterway, which unfortunately does happen occasionally.
difference whether the zebrafish glows or not, it could still damage
natural ecosystems, but I assume you don't go throwing fish into rivers.
The company states that the modified zebrafish tolerate cold less than
the unmodified fish, so since as far as I am aware zebrafish have not
invaded the wild, then the modified version is even less likely to, given
its current known tolerances.
Seems to me that the glowing part of the fish would make it easy for
predators to spot and thus would keep their populations down should they be
engineered bioweapon (did you know the US spends more on its military than
the next twelve biggest spenders combined?),
This is irrelevant to the discussion and the implication is false.
unfortunately the root of the problem is that humans are, as a mass,
stupid. Nobody would release an organism intentionally that would cause
damage, yet stupidity allows it to happen anyway. Stupidity can be
Stupidity is unfortunately extremely difficult to overcome. Even at work we
see problems still with users and email worms, despite repeated
instruction, mass media attention, and even some firings of repeat
offenders. And following the "don't open email attachments" rule is not
difficult. I think what you're talking about here is the real problem, and
not one that can be easily overcome.
Perhaps it would be prudent to place security measures in every organism?
Suicide genes, that inhibit wide-spread growth (the organism produces a
chemical that kills it if to much grows). In Jurassic Park, the dinosaurs
were incapable of producing the amino acid lysine. By not feeding this in
the dinosaurs diet, the dinosaurs should have died, although (as in the
Lost \world), it is possible they could have eaten food high in this amino
acid to survive. If rabbits were created with such a deficiency, they
would soon breed with other rabbits and gain the proteins to do it.
However, dinosaurs are unlikely to breed in the wild. Perhaps all
organisms created should:
a) be extinct or otherwise completely unable to breed with any other forms
of life (not sterilisation, which is never 100%)
b) be fitted with multiple suicide genes to avoid becoming a major
invasive problem in the event of release
c) have huge gaps in their metabolism, making them utterly dependent on
humans to survive, and highly unlikely to gain the necessary mutations.
Now you're looking at a serious amount of work, and something that might
not even be possible today. Sterilization can be 100% but such methods are
likely to reduce the life span of the fish.
BTW, movies are a notoriously bad source of scientific knowledge.
UNIX Systems Administrator
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