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Human Genome Decoder and Artificial Life Creator, J. Craig Venter to Speak at "The Atlantic Meets the Pacific"
Date:9/5/2012

LA JOLLA, Calif., Sept. 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- "There are two groups of people," J. Craig Venter told Der Spiegel in 2010. "People either want to know...or they prefer to live like an ostrich with their head in the sand, not knowing anything."

By any definition, Venter is a person who wants to know. He wanted to understand the human genome. But the Human Genome Project was working too slowly for his taste. So he created a company, Celera Genomics, that leapfrogged the government-backed effort and achieved full mapping of human DNA three years before it was projected to be completed.

Even so, once the DNA was decoded, knowledge did not necessarily translate directly into power. "Everybody thought that if you knew your genome, you would know when you would die and what you would die from. That is nonsense," Venter continued in the Spiegel interview. "We couldn't even be certain from my genome what my eye color was. Isn't that sad? Everyone was looking for miracle 'yes/no' answers in the genome. 'Yes, you'll have cancer.' Or 'No, you won't have cancer. But that's just not the way it is."

Venter will speak in San Diego in October, 2012 at "The Atlantic Meets the Pacific" www.atlanticmeetspacific.com a forum for exploring human intelligence, imagination, inventions and innovations shaping the future.

Never satisfied with the pace of ongoing scientific investigation, and loath to confine his pursuits to just one field of study, Venter next hatched a plan to explore the oceans in search of genetic diversity in marine microbes. Through the Global Ocean Sampling Expedition, Venter circumnavigated the globe in the mid-2000s.

At the Atlantic Meets Pacific conference, taking place October 7-9, 2012, in San Diego, Venter will speak about his unorthodox approach to science and the results of his wide-ranging experiments. The aim of the Atla
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SOURCE The Atlantic Meets the Pacific
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