Gender and the Genome fills a unique niche in medical publishing. The announcement in 2000 that we had successfully described the structure of the human genome signaled a profound change in our ability to explore, augment-and to alter the nature of created life by manipulating DNA. An expansion of this achievement was inevitable: Doctor Craig Venter pointed out that if we could describe a chromosome, we could create one, and has helped found the new discipline of synthetic biology in which novel life forms created for specific purposes and controlled by artificially constructed chromosomes are generated. The 21st century scientific revolution is not confined to genomic manipulation: engineers are producing an explosion of mechanical devices meant to augment humans’ functional ability and to create increasingly more competent machines to assist human life on this and ultimately on other planets. It is a new world, in which molecular biologists, engineers and clinical investigators can-and are-collaborating to improve and perfect the human condition in ways that we had never before imagined. Just as important, these efforts have consequences that must be carefully considered and regulated.
With the expansion of our revolutionary new power, many investigators are concentrating at the nano level: their focus is on molecules and isolated cells. Predictably, the impact of biological sex on the new technology and effect on human life is seldom if ever a consideration. One of the primary reasons to establish a new journal is to urge investigators at all levels to consider how their intervention will be translated to human life on this and ultimately other planets.
Gender and the Genome will solicit original reports of:
- Sex-specific differences in genomic, cellular, tissue and whole animal function New life forms generated by synthetic biology
- Technological advances meant to enhance the function in humans, whether compromised by disease/injury or in normal individuals
- Manufacture and usefulness of robotic devices
- Observations on the science of space travel and on the transformation/exploration of other planets
- Commentaries by ethicists, theologians, anthropologists, epidemiologists and sociologists/social scientists on the achievements of 21st century science to alter the genome, create new life forms, and develop technologically enhanced humans and the exploration of space