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FOTIS KAFATOS

...but the answers may change

 

Do we have the moral right to intervene to the human DNA in order to cure some disease or prevent it’s transmission to some future generation? Or, on the contrary, any intervention to our genetical code includes the danger of some unknown hereditable damages? How real is the danger from the spread of genetically modified plants? Does scientific knowledge belong to humanity or to those who finance the relative research? Is human cloning technically possible and morally acceptable? How can the decipherment of the DNA string of the mosquito save the life of three million children dying every year in Africa from malaria? Has a scientist the right not to consider the practical applications of his research, even when these clash with morality?

Questions posed to a pioneer of molecular biology, the second great revolution in bio-sciences, Fotis Kafatos, who answers to a series of crucial questions, though the “answers might change”, as biology is considered the most rapidly evolving sector of contemporary science..
Chairman of the European Research Council, professor at the Imperial College of London, one of the founders of the University of Crete, of the Institute of Research and Technology, of the Institute of Molecular Biology of Heraklion and of the Biology School of Athens, director for many years of the European Lab for Molecular Biology of Heidelberg, professor at the University of Harvard and member of many important scientific committees all over the world, Fotis Kafatos can be considered as one of the top biologists in the world and Crete can be proud of him.

NIKOS KARELLIS

 

Read the full interview (in Greek) in STIGMES issue no 93

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