AIHce Keynoter Sees Challenging New World

“How we make things, where we make things, is about to change in a very fundamental way,” and industrial hygienists can ensure the risks are effectively managed, Juan Enriquez said June 18.

INDIANAPOLIS -– The opening keynote speaker at this year’s AIHce conference spoke quietly and didn’t say much of anything about industrial hygiene until the end of his talk, but he kept his audience spellbound nonetheless. Juan Enruiquez, co-founder of Synthetic Genomics Inc. and managing director of Excel Venture Management in Boston, discussed genetic engineering and explained how it is already changing businesses around the world.

His slides included photos Enriquez took at a South American farm where cows have been cloned and genetically altered to produce a cancer-fighting chemical in their milk.

Enriquez cited another researcher who has mapped the activity in a mouse’s brain by introducing the genetic code that causes fireflies to light up. He has mapped the neural pathways activated when a mouse smells, eats, or moves one of its legs; the researcher has cured PTSD in a mouse using this method, and it may be useful for curing PTSD in human beings, Enriquez said.

Where digital code once spread throughout the world, transforming businesses and creating new industries, life code is now spreading similarly and will produce the same results, he predicted.

“How we make things, where we make things, is about to change in a very fundamental way,” he said. “Not only is this changing every business in this room; it’s the only [viable engine] for job creation.”

“On the whole, it’s one of the greatest adventures man has ever been on,” he said. “We are living in a renaissance where we are going to be able to generate wealth . . . on a scale the world has never known.” He urged the listening industrial hygienists to put their expertise to good use and said they have a key role to play, saying, “We’re going to have to get the safety and scale-up of this right.”

About the Author

Jerry Laws is Editor of Occupational Health & Safety magazine, which is owned by 1105 Media Inc.

Download Center

  • EHS Buyer's Guide

    Download this buyer's guide to make more informed decisions as you're looking for an EHS management software system for your organization.

  • Online Safety Training Buyer's Guide

    Use this handy buyer's guide to learn the basics of selecting online safety training and how to use it at your workplace.

  • COVID Return-to-Work Checklist, Fall 2021

    Use this checklist as an aid to help your organization return to work during the COVID-19 pandemic in a safe and healthy manner.

  • SDS Buyer's Guide

    Learn to make informed decisions while searching for SDS Management Software.

  • Risk Matrix Guide

    Risk matrices come in many different shapes and sizes. Understanding the components of a risk matrix will allow you and your organization to manage risk effectively.

  • Industry Safe

Featured Whitepapers

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - September 2021

    September 2021

    Featuring:

    • COMBUSTIBLE DUST
      Managing Combustible Dust and Risk Mitigation
    • PPE: CONSTRUCTION
      The Rising Popularity of Safety Helmets on the Jobsite
    • PPE: ELECTRICAL SAFETY
      Five Tips for a Successful Wear Trial
    • SAFETY & HEALTH
      Medical Surveillance Versus Medical Screening
    View This Issue