Synthetic Biology and Bioweapons

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9781783267651: Synthetic Biology and Bioweapons

Drawing on years of experience working with synthetic biologists, the established team of social scientists behind this book will explore the extent to which concerns about the misuse of synthetic biology to make biological weapons are realistic or exaggerated. Will synthetic biology enable the creation of dangerous viruses from scratch? Will synthetic organisms be used to deliberately inflict disease? Could the life sciences become the death sciences? To date, there has been no textbook focused specifically on the societal dimensions of synthetic biology. Synthetic Biology and Bioweapons aims to remedy this gap and tackles one of the central societal concerns with synthetic biology: its potential to facilitate the use of disease as a weapon of war and terror. Through an accessible and engaging narrative that highlights key messages, questions for discussion and classroom exercises, readers are expertly led through the complex political, social and ethical questions arising from the intersection of synthetic biology and security.

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