Horrified by "There Be Monsters Here" tales, some members of Congress called for a ban on DNA research in the mid '70s. Because those calls were rejected, millions of people around the world can now hope for DNA-based vaccines against AIDS, malaria and other deadly diseases that have destroyed lives, communities and nations.
Here's an illustration: The name of Joseph DeRisi keeps coming up in connection with deadly diseases. No, he's not a modern-day Typhoid Mary. Just the opposite. The University of California, San Francisco researcher is using his own custom-built DNA microarrays to look inside the "minds" of some serious serial killers. The "minds" are genes, and his home-brewed gene chips helped solve the SARS mystery earlier this year. Now, DeRisi has chosen malaria as his next victim.
For the complete commentary, please go to Howard Lovy's NanoBot.