Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Mechanical Biologist

The genes and their code opened the door
To machines that would sequence, map and explore
The function of genes which defined all our traits
Although our sequence differed little from pigs and primates

But we looked at the enzymes that chopped up the array,
changed the beads in the strand that was DNA
We learned to take it apart, then stitch and anneal -
We could engineer genes, we felt quite unreal

The computers crunched numbers and soon we could tell
That control lay with us and not with the cell
These answers were long known to crabs, fish and bees
But we thought we were clever and better than these

The wheels went round, the circuits they flowed
They simply confirmed what everyone knowed
The magic machines and odd devilish device
Made statistically certain our learnéd advice

But something was wrong it was soon very clear
And we had to make some results just disappear
So just like Alice of storybook lore
They went down a trapdoor much used on the floor

We examined intron sequences, once completely ignored,
And found secrets of genes which had not been explored
We learned how epigenes could control what came out
And now we knew everything, we had figured it out

We would make silver bullets and hit the bulls-eye
And tell all our clients they would no longer die
We would focus production and sell overseas
Become rich treating symptoms and live life at ease

This is just the beginning, the start of a trend
Being prescribed by genomics and some of their friends
From susceptibility testing to your own medication
To make you dependent from cradle unto cremation

We will drive a fast car, not ride a slow horse
And manipulate life for better or worse
We will broaden our markets with things automatic
We will be trendy and modern and monochromatic

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