Funding bodies have no idea what Synthetic Biology actually is, it’s been revealed, despite funding millions of dollars of research in the area.
“We’ve basically stopped trying to figure out what things actually mean, and have started funding whatever trends on Twitter” our source at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) said.
“We saw that Synthetic Biology was a popular term, and we knew we just had to fund research in that area so we could stay ‘On Trend’” they continued.
Synthetic biology can be defined as “the design and construction of biological devices and systems for useful purposes” ; however many projects are ignoring the “useful purposes” part of the definition – for example, the Synthetic Yeast project aims to create Yeast, an organism that has already been created by evolution.
“We’re pretty determined to fund Synth-e-Sys, which is basically a merger of two ‘On Trend’ topics – Synthetic Biology and Systems Biology. They sound alike, therefore we figure they must go well together. And we already have a cool name” announced a source at Research Councils UK (RCUK).
Reports that the Gates Foundation, by following the paradigm of funding trends on Twitter, accidentally funded Justin Bieber are yet to be confirmed.