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July 9-10 symposium on synthetic biology

The emerging field of synthetic biology uses engineering techniques to manipulate biological materials, enabling scientists to create new biological systems or even engineer new life forms. Though these technologies could lead to the creation of beneficial materials and applications for human health, they also raise a host of public policy, legal, and ethical questions.

A symposium to be held by the U.S. National Academies, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, and the Royal Society on July 9 and 10 will explore the implications of synthetic biology for policymakers, researchers, industry, and the public.

SYMPOSIUM DETAILS: 9 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. EDT on July 9 and from 8:30 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. EDT on July 10 in Room 100 of the National Academies' Keck Center, 500 Fifth St., N.W., Washington, D.C. A full agenda can be found at

WEBCAST: The following sessions on July 9 will be webcast live (audio) at
9 a.m. -- Welcome: Ralph Cicerone, president, U.S. National Academy of Sciences
9:15 a.m. -- Keynote Address: Arden Bement Jr., director, National Science Foundation
9:45 a.m. -- Panel Discussion: Synthetic Biology Overview
11:15 a.m. -- Panel Discussion: Public Policy -- Government Perspectives and Approaches


Contact: Sara Frueh
National Academy of Sciences

Page: 1

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