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Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Genetic poetry

To widen the debate on genetics I believe we need to be creative. Genetics says things about personal identity that go beyond science. Sequence data tell stories, contain riddles and make promises– perfect fodder for artists of all sorts.

I had a go myself: I wrote a poem for chromosome 18 of the Human Genre Project.


I was making love at the time.
The slice of time when G tripped to A
Deep inside,
Just once.
Silently.

The single A tottered and tipped the balance.
Go go go!
Grow grow grow!

As I slid and murmured the altered protein expressed
Itself, folding into shape, caressing its partner.
Struggling here, slipping there.
The fit was gone!
The seed was sown.
Go go go.

Over the years my pancreas peddled the cycle of life
Without brakes.
Gradually speeding up until I was overrun.


SMAD4 is a tumour suppressor gene on chromosome 18 involved in regulating the cell cycle. Mutations in this gene can cause unchecked cell growth and are present in 50% of pancreatic cancers.

Maybe an example of sci-porn?

If you want to flex your creative muscles, there is still a chance to contribute.

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