I'll keep this short, because I would like to hear your thoughts on the last two panels. First of all, let me say that, thank you to Meredith for reading the biopunk manifesto. I would have done it if she hadn't. There's uh, there's a lot to be learned from the experience that the cryptographers in the 15 to 10 years ago went through back when crypto was classified as the same sort of munition as atomic weapons and so forth. The biggest problem aside from the legislative battle to bank research into mathematics legal, was in my experience, dealing with law enforcement who were not the sorts of FBI agents that we would run into at security conferences but the relatively ignorant field agents I kid you not. I had to explain the difference between websiets and email to some of our finest in San Jose in 2000 during the .com boom. I can only assume that the reason they weren't working for a dot com was that they didn't know the difference between email and websites. I had to explain the concept to them.

We're going to run into similar problems here where your local sheriff, your backwoods outpost for FBI agents who are not qualified to be doing their jobs, to the nosy neighbor who files a report that has the men in biohazard suits coming through you rwindows and raiding yuor art projects with glowing bacteria. Education and outreach to the legislature and the law enforcenment is critical if we want to be viewed not as advisaries, the bad guys, not be viewed as a threat, in addition to the pure pursuit of knowledge, one of the things that drives my interest in DIYbio is the ability to help save and improve lives. One of my projects with my fellow biohackers is an organism that will act as a sensor of melamine contamination. There's a way to help save lives, if there's unscruplous formula makers who are spiking their food with melamine to have a higher measurement of protein falsely higher measure of protein in their product and instead they are posioning our babies, we want to know about that before they leave the factory floor. Detecting melamine is quite difficult on an on-site rpactice. You can do an ELISA test, but in 30 minutes. If we hack an organism so that the metabolic product of melamine turns on GFP, you have a scenario where you have a sample tested in 30min and get the results. We're also looking at ways of modifying again lack of .. a natural commonly indogenous bacteria that is in everyone's guts, so that it fills the gap in our synthesis of vitamin C, so thaat we can target areas of the world where scurvy is a real problem, and give them a self-sustaining way of dealing that. Vitamin C pills don't necessarily do that in my experience. Yogurt.

I am cautiously optimistic to hear special agent Edward You to say what he has to say. That excites me. I hope that is the prevailing mindset in not just the FBI but also law enforcement on all levels throughout the UUnited States as well as the rest of the developed world. I am sketpical. I belieeve eeveryone herre is familiar with the case from 2004 of Steve Kurtz. To this day I don't think the Department of Justice or FBI has apologized to him for the horrendo ordealll affter hiss wife aand rresearrch partenr had a heart attack; emergency response got suspicious about his petri dishes, and when they couldn't get the grand jury to get him on bioterrorism, they got him on mail fraud and wire fraud, because of the "hello world" of biohacking. I do not think that the citizens of this country should tolerate this. If you are doing art in your own home, if you're doing harmless experimentation and you are targetted by law enforcement, for no logical reason, there should be some form of redress at least an apology. But again, the issue I've ehard by some peoople mmentioned, pprooactioooon versus reactivity. That was messed up, and that shouldn't have happened, but more concerning to me is that we should prevent this from happening in the first place.

Those of you who are actually doing DIYbio experimetns, particularly ones that are helpful for researching anything from chronic illnesses, limiting the potency of pathogens, to vitamin deficiencies, if you can actually explain what yuo are doinga nd why you are doing it, to law enforcement, on a neutral setting, before you become the suspect, you will help all of us. If you've ever had to be on the wrong side of the table, an unfortunate situation, say, the FBI, as I have, you'll realize that at that point, it's too late to try to convince a law enforcement officer that you're the good guy- you're the suspect. In addition, you should have people that you refer to, trusted colleagues that can explain that DIYbio is not the berkeley branch of Al-Qaeda bioterrorism factory.

There's been discussion about potential harm to experimenters. One of my heroes is Murry Cury. And she was the first person to ever win two Nobel prize. First woman to win the Nobel prize- she died because of her research, but if you had an hour to talk with her today, I am pretty confident that she wuold say yes. PEople ask me what I do. And depending on who I am talking to, I say I aspire to be a natural philosopher. The earlier suggestion of going to the government to fund diybio, that kind of turns my stomach. Look at the Royal Society where the birth of modern science took place, that was a state- sponsored organizations and many, many famous names for good reason, took part in the early days of that organization.

The quest for knowledge is af undamental part of being human. Any kind of prior restraint against that is in my opinion a violation of our freedom of thuoght and conscious. So, not only am I hopeful that we can avoid overly restrictive knee-jerk legislation, I also want to caution against ideas such as certification programs. They can go horribly wrong. In the UK, there was a voluntary certification program, for amateur locksmith, that essentially, they got nationalized, and it got nationalized in such a way that it is now extremely difficult to actually get this certification. The goal was oppression, not regulation. I don't want to see anyone build a framewrok that could be misapplied for that purpose. Speaking of knee-jerk reactions.

We as scientists, as citizens, there is an area of research where everyone should be able to go home and conduct experiments that has been knee-capped, that is chemistry. We saw an incredible knee-jerk reaction against chemistry research in the 70s because of -- well, we can argue whether it was a public culture issue or public safety, it was Nixon versus the hippies and they lost. We are decades behind where we could be in the study of neuroscience and understanding how our consciousness works simply because here in America, land of the free, we can't do psycahdelics research even in academic settings, there's been.. in recent years, there has been some controlled experiments with schedule 1 drugs, but the unilateral arbitrary classification of certain drugs as no medical use has made research nearly impossible. I can see an easy parallel to classifying certain oligos or derived DNA that is derived from potential pathogens and over-brought restrictions on what people or material that people have access to, in addition to what tools they have access to. This is a problem as some of my fellow panelists have said. This is up to us to solve. Us as the community, us as individuals, and both in our role as peer-review and ethics of enforcement amongst ourselves, as well as education and particularly with the law enforcement and legislators who might not realize what sort of laws they are passing or the impact it would have on- chilling effects it would have on research.

The GMO phobia in America is based firmly in fear and ignorance. As humans we've been doing GMO of our crops for thousands of years, we've just been doing it the hard way. This is a public perception problem. We do need to get involved with making the general public understand why this research has value to humanity as well as corporations and academics who are looking for grants and all that. This is our heritage, this research, these ideas that we have, that is leading to knowledge that no human in history has had the opportunity to have before, this is what we're going to be handing down to future generations. We need to make sure we are not backed into a corner where we are not able to distribute this research to others, and that this isn't locked up in IP lawyer vaults. And fianlly, we need to mitigate these risks. There will be accidents and problems, so the issue is risk mitigation. I'd like to hear thoughts on some of that, and now for panel discussions.