January 3, 2013
The Frost Interview With Craig J. Venter
|In an in-depth interview, Sir David Frost meets the scientist who first sequenced the human genome and went on to create artificial life.|
In the interview, Venter, CEO of Synthetic Genomics, talks about finding genomic-driven solutions to address the needs of medicine, food, climate change and energy.
Frost explores how Dr. Venter began his formal education after a tour of duty as a Navy Corpsman in Vietnam from 1967 to 1968. After earning both a Bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry and a Ph.D. in Physiology and Pharmacology from the University of California at San Diego.
In 1984, Venter moved to the National Institutes of Health campus where he developed Expressed Sequence Tags or ESTs, a revolutionary new strategy for rapid gene discovery. In 1992 Dr. Venter founded The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR, now part of the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI), a not-for-profit research institute, where in 1995 he and his team decoded the genome of the first free-living organism, the bacterium Haemophilus influenzae, using his new whole genome shotgun technique.
That year, Venter and his team founded Synthetic Genomics Inc., they did so based on the new tools, techniques and knowledge they had developed from decades of their pioneering genomics research. They believed that there were real commercial applications for some of the breakthroughs they had been making in the new field of synthetic genomics.
In 1998, Venter founded Celera Genomics to sequence the human genome using new tools and techniques he and his team developed. This research culminated with the February 2001 publication of the human genome in the journal, Science. He and his team at Celera also sequenced the fruit fly, mouse and rat genomes.
|Outdoor laboratory at the J. Craig Venter Institute cultivating algae to convert carbon dioxide into future fuels.|
Dr. Venter and his team at JCVI continue to blaze new trails in genomics. They have sequenced and analyzed hundreds of genomes, and have published numerous important papers covering such areas as environmental genomics, the first complete diploid human genome, and the groundbreaking advance in creating the first self- replicating bacterial cell constructed entirely with synthetic DNA.
SOURCE Al Jazeera
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Tags: Craig J. Venter , David Frost , genomics , Human genome project , medicine , science , Synthetic Genomics , synthetic life
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