Headline on the BBC story says:
Scientists hope to ease GM fears
Title of the upcoming conference [PDF] is:
What Can Nano Learn from Bio?
Lessons from the Debate over Agrifood Biotechnology and GMOs
These two items are not connected, at least not directly. But they are part of a pattern.
At conferences, in articles and in conversation with nanotechnologists, this point is emphasized again and again: 'We shouldn't make the same mistakes the GM folks have made.'
But are the two really the same? In many ways, it's misleading to equate biotechnology and nanotechnology. Just because they are both six-syllable words that end in -ology and they both deal with the science of the small doesn't make them equivalent. In fact, the wrong message can be sent if fear of genetically modified organisms gets connected with the idea of rogue nanobots.
Chris Phoenix, CRN's Director of Research, is speaking at the "What Can Nano Learn From Bio?" conference at Michigan State University in October (linked above). One point he's sure to make is that while a few of the benefits offered by biotech and nanotech are similar, many of the risks are quite different.