Like it or not, Venter becomes synthetic biology's public face

J. Craig Venter's company, Synthetic Genomics, has received $110 million in investment, as well as hundreds of millions in research financing, toward its aim of creating new genetic code for cells that could eventually replace fossil-fuel products. But Venter's rivals say his public pronouncements about creating synthetic life could lead to stringent regulation of the entire synthetic biology field and rouse public fear about moral ramifications. "The only regulation we need is of my colleague's mouth," said Jay Keasling, who co-founded rival firm Amyris.

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