Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Med Ethics. 2010 Nov;36(11):687-93. doi: 10.1136/jme.2010.038232. Epub 2010 Oct 8.

Synthetic biology and the ethics of knowledge.

Author information

  • 1Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics, Faculty of Philosophy, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK. thomas.douglas@philosophy.ox.ac.uk

Abstract

Synthetic biologists aim to generate biological organisms according to rational design principles. Their work may have many beneficial applications, but it also raises potentially serious ethical concerns. In this article, we consider what attention the discipline demands from bioethicists. We argue that the most important issue for ethicists to examine is the risk that knowledge from synthetic biology will be misused, for example, in biological terrorism or warfare. To adequately address this concern, bioethics will need to broaden its scope, contemplating not just the means by which scientific knowledge is produced, but also what kinds of knowledge should be sought and disseminated.

PMID:
20935316
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3045879
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk