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訳お願いします This prospect horrifies some and exhilarates others. Yet the question of whether or not we should make improvements to human beings and possibly to human nature is the most vital, urgent and portentous of all the questions facing us. Now is the time to try to answer this question, because many recent discoveries are beginning to make the prospect of radical human enhancement a reality. Stem cell research, which may lead to human tissue repairing itself; new genes resistant to cancer and HIV; new drugs that improve concentration and memory or enable us to function for much longer periods without sleep; braincomputer interfaces that may harness the power and memory of computers, perhaps by the insertion of tiny “nanobots” into the human brain; and techniques that will radically extend life expectancy from tens to hundreds of years---these are all on today's scientific agenda and some are already in use. Some of these possibilities are so radical that the creatures benefiting from them would no longer be “human”, in the way we think of it. The end of humanity then is not in itself a concern; making sure that those who replace us are better than we are is a huge and timely concern. One of the most dramatic and important of the new technologies that will produce new creatures is synthetic biology. When people talk about synthetic biology and syntheic life, they may have in mind Frankenstein scientists in the lab, or perhaps some bubbling vat of biochemical “primeval soup” out of which will arise either a monster or a perfect specimen of humanity. よろしくお願いします。

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この見通しにぞっとした人もいれば、ウキウキした人もいます。 しかし、我々が人間に、そして、もしかして人間性に改良をもたらすべきかどうかと言う問題が、我々が向き合っているすべての問題で最も不可欠で、緊急で、きわめて重要です。 今こそこの問題に答えようとすべき時です、と言うのは、多くの最近の発見が極端な人間の強化の見込みを現実とし始めているからです。自己修復するヒト組織につながるかもしれない幹細胞研究;ガンとHIVに抵抗する新しい遺伝子;集中力や記憶を改善したり、我々が睡眠なしでずっと長い時間働くことができる新薬;おそらく小さい「ナノロボット」の人間の脳への挿入によるコンピュータの力と記憶を利用するかもしれない脳型コンピュータ・インターフェース;そして、数十年から数百年までも寿命を極端に延ばす技術 - これらのすべては今日の科学的な課題になっていますし、いくつかはすでに利用されています。 これらの可能性の一部はあまりにも極端なので、それらから利益を得る生物は、もはや我々が人間について考える様な「人間」ではなくなるかもしれません。それで、人類の終わりは、本来懸念でありません;我々に取ってかわるものたちが、我々よりよいことを確認することが、とても大きい時宜を得た懸念なのです。 新しい生物を生み出す新技術で最も劇的で重要なものの1つは、合成生物学です。人々が合成生物学や合成生命について話すとき、彼らは、研究室のフランケンシュタイン科学者、あるいは、多分、怪物か人類の完全な標本が生じる生化学的「原始のスープ」の泡立っているバットを考えるかもしれません。

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