As we constantly had discussions with the general public in various public events, we came to strongly recognize the people’s overwhelming concerns for application of genetic engineering.

Faced with this problem, we attempted to solve it in two ways.

First, we strived to improve upon our project design of Noro-catcher and introduced a new module to increase its safety. We expected this module to reassure the general public on oral administration of our device.

Second, we further developed our HP activities to discuss how people’s fears for genetic engineering arise, and we came upon the hypothesis that lack of knowledge on the matter causes unnecessary fear. To test this hypothesis, we conducted an informational lecture/discussion about genetic engineering to students of the age range 13 to 18 with various backgrounds and conducted a feedback survey before and after lecture. By comparing these results, we observed the effect of additional knowledge on genetic engineering, with dramatic increase in their trusts for this technology. As mentioned above, our struggle to improve public perception on synthetic biology was reflected on our activities, fulfilling GOLD criteria.

*It has to be noted that our experience from the lectures suggests the need for further consideration when engaging with non-scientists.

For more information, visit Activities