RE: Life in the Lab -- Review Paper

Dan Berger (
Tue, 18 May 1999 11:57:14 -0400

I would say that Scientific American is a good compromise. Publication in a
biological review journal would limit the audience (as would publication in,
say, Chemical Reviews), while Discover might tend to be more easily
dismissed because you would not be able to bring as much evidence to bear.

Ideally, you might publish a fully-referenced review in a biological review
journal and do a rewrite for SciAm (or vice versa).

> Working Title: Laboratory Synthesis of Life: Implications
> for a Biological
> Definition of Life
> Introductory Remarks
> Part One: Metaphysical vs. biological definitions of life, and the
> implications of synthesis of life in the lab

Have to see more on this before commenting. I don't think even Moorad
believes in vitalism, and I wouldn't say that "irreducibly complex" is
really a metaphysical concept; Dembski claims it's falsifiable. I can't say
I think there are any moral or religious implications worth mentioning.
There might be misinterpretation though (like Einstein and "the theory of
relativism"), and that should be carefully anticipated and excised.

> Part Two: Overview of proteinoid microsphere protocell research
> Part Three: Protocells in light of cell theory
> Concluding Remarks: Protocells meet all the requirements of
> cell theory so
> they should be considered alive in the biological sense

Nothing particularly controversial here.

Looking forward to it.


Daniel J. Berger |PH 419-358-3379
Assoc Prof of Chemistry|FX 419-358-3323
Bluffton College |
Bluffton OH 45817-1196|