Molecular Biology and Genomics (2007)

April 23, 2016

Molecular Biology and Genomics (2007)Pursuits in the field of molecular biology involve genetic engineering and techniques such as cloning, and they may be interpreted as being quite adventuresome and almost divine. As a  molecular biologist, declaring how you spend your days may garner boundless admiration from some people and disapproval from others. Consequently, you must consider carefully with whom you are speaking before describing your activities. You should not mention how many problems and how much frustration you must endure daily, because one group will be disillusioned, and the other will inevitably ask why you continue to work in this field.

I confess that I like the debates about whether we should clone humans, although the discussion often is not engaged at a scientific level. One individual makes a stupid suggestion, and one half of the media and the nation explain why the cloning of humans may not be justified by any means. It seems much ado about nothing, and I cannot comprehend what advantage it would be for me to clone myself. Why should I wish to invest $75,000 for a small crybaby, whose only common ground with me is that it looks like me as I did 30 years ago, if I could instead come to a similar result in a classic manner for the price of a bouquet of flowers for my wife and a television-free evening?

This example reveals the problems that are associated with molecular biology. Incited by spectacular reports in the media, everybody has his or her own, usually quite extreme, ideas on the benefits or disasters related to this topic. In reality, the picture is deeply distressing. Molecular biology, also known as the molecular world, generally deals with minute quantities of chiefly clear, colorless solutions. There are no signs of ecstatic scholars who have gone wild in the cinematic setting of flickering, steaming, gaudy-colored liquids. The molecular world deals with molecules, evidence for the existence of which has been attempted in many textbooks, although there is generally little more than a fluorescing spot to be seen on the agarose gel. Every procedure seems to take 3 days, and no Nobel Prize is associated with any of them.

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