Science: The Making of an Amoeba

Serious scientific thinkers have long speculated­and, indeed, sometimes feared­that man may eventually be able to tailor living organisms, including himself, to suit highly specific needs. Though such "genetic engineering" is still a distant goal, it seemed just a little closer last week. After a dazzling series of experiments, researchers at the State University of New York at Buffalo reported that they have succeeded many times in reassembling parts of three different amoebae­microscopic, one-celled animals­into one fully functioning new cell.

Other scientists have "created" new cells in the past, usually by taking the nucleus of one and implanting it into another whose nucleus...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!