Scientists around the world have long been searching for a cure for cancer, and recent advancements in technology coupled with rigorous new efforts such as Joe Biden’s ‘cancer moonshot’ have ignited hopes that it could soon become a reality.
But, experts warn that such a breakthrough, despite its obvious benefits, could have unexpected global consequences.
According to Intel’s chief medical officer John Sotos, effectively fighting cancer will require the use of ultra-precise DNA-altering technology – and the same approach could be used to overcome the challenges standing in the way of bioweapons.
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According to Intel’s chief medical officer John Sotos, effectively fighting cancer will require the use of ultra-precise DNA-altering technology – and the same approach could be used to overcome the challenges standing in the way of bioweapons. Stock image
According to Bill Gates, breakthroughs in genetic engineering will make it easier for terrorists to plot attacks on a massive scale.
And, he claims security services 'haven't been following biology'.
At the Munich Security Conference, he warned told the audience, 'Whether it occurs by a quirk of nature or at the hand of a terrorist, epidemiologists say a fast-moving airborne pathogen could kill more than 30 million people in less than a year,’ The Guardian reports.
'And they say there is a reasonable probability the world will experience such an outbreak in the next 10 to 15 years.'
‘The reason you haven’t heard much about bioweapons is that they’ve been held back by a pretty severe limitation, which is the potential for blowback,’ Sotos said recently at the DEF CON conference in Las Vegas, The Guardian reports.
As of now, a potential bioweapon would pose a major risk even to the country that launched it.
While it might work to destroy the enemy, it would eventually spread outside of its distribution area and make its way back to the initial attacker.
According to Sotos, ‘the cancer moonshot is going to really drive new technologies to manipulate DNA because cancer is a disease of DNA.
‘[And] the same exquisite targeting that allows it to attack only your cancer cells also overcomes the blowback potential for bioweapons.’
Once these techniques are eventually refined, the expert warns it could have dire consequences that extend even beyond mass fatality, if it were used to weaponize disease.
‘There’s some stuff worse than dying,’ Sotos said, according to The Guardian.
‘And I call that hell.’
DNA manipulation could be used to target specific groups of people based on their genetic codes, even allowing