May 07, 2013

Response from 'Glowing Plants' project

Email sent by Antony Evans


From: Antony Evans 

Date: May 7, 2013 1:34:33 PM EDT


Subject: Re: Request to Cancel the Kickstarter Synthetic Biology ‘Glowing Plants’ project.

Dear Jim Thomas and Eric Hoffman,

Thank you for your interest in our project and taking the time to write to us with your concerns. Please allow me to clarify and expand upon a few key points. 

We are using the term 'synthetic biology' in it's most general sense, the technology we are using is functionally the same as that which has been used in the creation of many other biotechnology products over the last two decades. 

What is different about this project is the way we are funded, through public donations. Our primary goal with the project is to inspire and educate the general public regarding the potential benefits of this technology. It is our opinion that this technology should not be the exclusive preserve of large corporations but that the benefits it brings should be available to everyone. 

We take safety matters very seriously and have initiated discussions with the appropriate regulatory agencies from an early stage.  We are still in a research and development phase and will continue to follow all of their guidelines and regulations as we progress with the project.  In addition we are setting up an advisory board to guide us throughout the project and I will ask them to consider the questions you have raised.

One of the outcomes of this project is the development of a policy framework to help and guide future projects like ours.  We want to engage with a wide variety of stakeholders to develop this framework and welcome any suggestions of who would be a valuable addition to this group.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach out to us.  

Kind Regards,

Antony Evans & the Glowing Plant team

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