A ‘Kill Switch’ for Rogue Microbes (by Katherine Bourzac, 08/20/2010, TechnologyReview)
“A new type of genetic switch gives bioengineers better control over microbes.
Biologists often speak of switching genes on and off to give microbes new abilities–like producing biofuels or drugs, or gobbling up environmental toxins. For the most part, though, it’s nearly impossible to turn off a gene without deleting it (which means you can’t turn it on again). This limits biologists’ ability to control how much of a particular protein a microbe produces. It also restricts bioengineers’ ability to design new microbes.” [read original article]