Is the first artificial bacterium DNA that the scientists from Craig Venter Institute produced in the laboratory environment and its transplant into a cell of a bacterium of the kind of Mycoplasma related with creating out of nothing?

Details of the Question
Is the first artificial bacterium DNA that the scientists from Craig Venter Institute produced in the laboratory environment and its transplant into a cell of a bacterium of the kind of Mycoplasma related with creating out of nothing?
The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

First of all, let us define the event that occurred. Craig Venter and his team injected a DNA, whose array they had changed, into a bacterium and the bacterium synthesized that array in the form of a cell. 

In fact, that technique has been practiced all along. However, they have taken that technique more forward.

Viruses are beings even smaller than bacteria. Some of them can live inside bacteria cells. Viruses living inside bacteria have a special name called phage. The single- arrayed DNA of the phage sticking to a bacterium cell is transferred to the bacterium cell. After the DNAs of the phage get into the bacterium, the bacterium biosynthesis mechanism takes service with multiplying the phage. After that, the bacterium’s own chromosome and hence its DNA is destroyed. The all biosynthesis mechanism of the bacterium’s entering into a phage’s service is a very important event.

In the gene technology, that system is made use of. In other words, directing the bacterium mechanism by a DNA array that you have sent from outside is extremely important.

That practice has been made use of for a long time. Genetic structures of some substances like insulin are injected into a bacterium and the synthesis of those substances are supplied. Nowadays, the Venter team cuts some arrays from some parts of the DNA of a random virus and makes some additions to it and so achieves a new DNA with new arrays. When that DNA with new arrays is injected into a bacterium, the genetic code of the bacterium is destroyed and that new DNA is synthesized. When the phage covers form above those DNAs, the bacterium cell is torn and new phages –viruses- appear. Thus, viruses with new genetic arrays are obtained.      

Is it creating a new living-thing?

It is not creating a new living-thing but copying a new living-thing. In one respect, we can liken the study Craig Venter did to grafting. You can graft plum onto the peach tree. In this way, you achieve plums from a peach tree. Another similar way of it is grafting watermelon onto a squash seedling and getting watermelon from a squash plant.

What Venter and his team do is a more sensitive form of the grafting of plants and it can be considered as grafting at the level of molecules.

All we do is preparing the conditions for a different living thing or a fruit to come into existence. It is not creating. It is making something from existing elements or substances. Creating is peculiar to Allah. In order to create a living thing, we have to control the growing up, the developing and the differentiation laws taking place in all of its cells and have to form the atoms and the molecules according to them. Moreover, we have to make the property of vitality or life, which does not exist in elements.  

Everything in the universe is under the knowledge and will of Allah. Through our scientific studies, we are trying to explain and understand His laws and principles He imposed in the universe. As we enter into details at the level of molecules and atoms through our studies about the world, the knowledge we obtain has to be a stage to understand and know His knowledge and power.

It is because, the book of the universe, which is Allah’s work of art, makes Him known.

Otherwise, an approach in a manner like disregarding Allah and asserting godhead by saying “I created”  by relying on some kinds of results that they obtained by their little knowledge compared to Allah’s knowledge and power is only the act of some ignorant people who do not know Allah rightfully. 

May Allah protect scientists from being such ignorant people, amen.

Prof. Dr. Âdem Tatlı

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