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View Full Version : Hybrid Human-animal Embryos 'should Be Used In Research'



Celtkin
06-17-2007, 06:05 PM
Making human-animal embryos for scientific experiments should be allowed because of the benefits to science and medicine, British experts said in a report released for Sunday.

Such embryos should never, however, be implanted into either a woman or an animal, said the Academy of Medical Sciences.

The combinations would include animal eggs and the nucleus, containing the genetic material, of a human being, or human embryos that carry the genetic material of an animal, the independent advisory body said.

A cloning technique called somatic cell nuclear transfer, or SCNT for short, involves removing the nucleus from an egg cell and replacing it with the nucleus of a cell from the animal to be cloned -- perhaps a skin cell, for instance.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070617/sc_nm/stemcells_chimeras_dc_1

branflakecereal
06-17-2007, 09:30 PM
That is a slippery, slippery slope to go down. All I'm sayin.

ABrownLamp
06-17-2007, 10:20 PM
That is a slippery, slippery slope to go down. All I'm sayin.


Good lord. The slippery slope argument is the staple of the Conservative movement. If we do anything remotely progressive it may lead to the destruction of morality and then society.

branflakecereal
06-17-2007, 10:48 PM
Good lord. The slippery slope argument is the staple of the Conservative movement. If we do anything remotely progressive it may lead to the destruction of morality and then society.

Oh, I'm sorry if I don't particularly feel like watching Centaurs become something other than a fictional creature. I don't trust humanity to *not* to something stupid.

The_Dark_Knight
06-17-2007, 10:52 PM
"The problem with scientific power you've used is it
didn't require any discipline to attain it. You read
what others had done and you took the next step. You
didn't earn the knowledge yourselves, so you don't take
the responsibility for it. You stood on the shoulders
of geniuses to accomplish something as fast as you
could, and before you knew what you had, you patented
it, packages it, slapped in on a plastic lunch box, and
now you want to sell it."
Jeff Goldblum as Dr. Ian Malcolm, "Jurassic Park"


It's not a conservative viewpoint. It's a matter of ethics. We all know that for every good cop out there, there is one bad one. We know the same for every politican, teacher, CEO, etc. It is naive to think that there is not one scientist out there that would cross the lines of ethics and play God, creating only God knows what.

It is a democratic and liberal ideology to hold those in positions of authority and responsibility accountable by forbidding certain acts related to their profession. Why should geneticists be any different?

ckb2001
06-17-2007, 11:19 PM
"The problem with scientific power you've used is it didn't require any discipline to attain it. You read what others had done and you took the next step. You didn't earn the knowledge yourselves, so you don't take the responsibility for it. You stood on the shoulders of geniuses to accomplish something as fast as you could, and before you knew what you had, you patented it, packages it, slapped in on a plastic lunch box, and now you want to sell it."
Jeff Goldblum as Dr. Ian Malcolm, "Jurassic Park"

I just want to point out how terrible a quote this is (from the movie). Practically all kinds of scientific discoveries require lots of discipline to make, and one DOES earn that knowledge. I mean spending a year or several years doing careful experiments and testing various models just to improve on the prior art by even small increments requires lots of discipline AND whatever results you come to are EARNED.

And most of the prior research done was NOT done by people considered "geniuses". Almost all advances in science are more the result of a large number of scientists working on advancing our knowledge incrementally than the occasional leap of thought so great the originator of the idea is recognized as a "genius".

PhinPhan1227
06-17-2007, 11:48 PM
Good lord. The slippery slope argument is the staple of the Conservative movement. If we do anything remotely progressive it may lead to the destruction of morality and then society.

Every side uses the slippery slope whenver their pet issue comes into play. Sometimes it's valid, sometimes it isn't. After the recent Supreme Court ruling on PBA's, every group on the left was screaming "slippery slope" from every rooftop.

One thing here though, we've seen repeatedly that whatever laws are passed, some scientist in some country is going to try something if he thinks in can bring him fortune or fame. Heck, there are several scientists in several countries working on human clonign despite international laws against it. If you advance the technology of human/animal hybridizing, do you really think some scientist WON'T try to advance it to the next stage? That's not really slippery slope, that's almost innevitable given the impetus of wealth and fame.

Ask yourself this question...do you think that if a scientist came to Kim Jong Il and told him he could create a human with the endurance of a horse and the NBC resistance of a cockroach, Kim Jong would tell him it was "unethical" to pursue it?

The_Dark_Knight
06-18-2007, 01:11 AM
I just want to point out how terrible a quote this is (from the movie). Practically all kinds of scientific discoveries require lots of discipline to make, and one DOES earn that knowledge. I mean spending a year or several years doing careful experiments and testing various models just to improve on the prior art by even small increments requires lots of discipline AND whatever results you come to are EARNED.

And most of the prior research done was NOT done by people considered "geniuses". Almost all advances in science are more the result of a large number of scientists working on advancing our knowledge incrementally than the occasional leap of thought so great the originator of the idea is recognized as a "genius".

Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should.
What's so great about discovery? It's a violent, penetrative act that scars what it explores. What you call discovery I call the rape of the natural world!
Yes, when you have that ONE geneticist that defies guidelines and you see a "dolphin man" (can't help but to think of that one South Park episode) on the news...an abomination created out of the discovery of science, then mabe you might understand where those who call for restrain in this line of work are coming from.

ABrownLamp
06-18-2007, 11:06 AM
Oh, I'm sorry if I don't particularly feel like watching Centaurs become something other than a fictional creature. I don't trust humanity to *not* to something stupid.

see how absurd this stuff is? It's like we cant make any advances without some crazy line being drawn between what we have now and the destruction of our society.

I dont see any money in creating centaurs, so I think you can rest easy on that one. And any cloning done will be for organs. I know you guys are real nervous that a new human being may be created with our technology, but I think investing in the ability to replicate organs for cancer patients is a bit more important than your fear that one day the streets will be littered ith horse-men

ABrownLamp
06-18-2007, 11:09 AM
Yes, when you have that ONE geneticist that defies guidelines and you see a "dolphin man" (can't help but to think of that one South Park episode) on the news...an abomination created out of the discovery of science, then mabe you might understand where those who call for restrain in this line of work are coming from.

So we should abandon funding for science that could create new organs for cancer patients because you people are scared of a dolphin-man? Do you realize how ridiculous that is?

ABrownLamp
06-18-2007, 11:16 AM
Every side uses the slippery slope whenver their pet issue comes into play. Sometimes it's valid, sometimes it isn't. After the recent Supreme Court ruling on PBA's, every group on the left was screaming "slippery slope" from every rooftop.

One thing here though, we've seen repeatedly that whatever laws are passed, some scientist in some country is going to try something if he thinks in can bring him fortune or fame. Heck, there are several scientists in several countries working on human clonign despite international laws against it. If you advance the technology of human/animal hybridizing, do you really think some scientist WON'T try to advance it to the next stage? That's not really slippery slope, that's almost innevitable given the impetus of wealth and fame.

Ask yourself this question...do you think that if a scientist came to Kim Jong Il and told him he could create a human with the endurance of a horse and the NBC resistance of a cockroach, Kim Jong would tell him it was "unethical" to pursue it?


I dont see what your point is. All you did was create a gloom and doom scenario. N Korea does their own thing, that is a separate issue.

PhinPhan1227
06-18-2007, 01:48 PM
I dont see what your point is. All you did was create a gloom and doom scenario. N Korea does their own thing, that is a separate issue.


Before I elaborate, let me point out that I have not decided whether I support this kind of research or not.

Now, that being said, N Korea does very little of "their own thing". Most of what they do is steal or buy what OTHER people do. So while this technology might be explored and developed in Europe, it could and most likely would find its way to other nations, like N Korea and Iran, who would ignore any ethical restrictions. Genii and the bottle scenario.

Eshlemon
06-18-2007, 01:49 PM
While I think this will be well monitored, as it should be and is as stated in the article. Using animal tissue in human medicine isnt' something new, pig heart valves used for human heart valves for instance.



Researchers also routinely make chimeras -- animals that contain the genetic material from more than one individual. These include animals that carry human genes, most commonly mice engineered with human genes that are used to study disease.

Anyone else a Fullmetal Alchemist fan? Sounds like Lab 5.:lol:

ABrownLamp
06-18-2007, 02:40 PM
Before I elaborate, let me point out that I have not decided whether I support this kind of research or not.

Now, that being said, N Korea does very little of "their own thing". Most of what they do is steal or buy what OTHER people do. So while this technology might be explored and developed in Europe, it could and most likely would find its way to other nations, like N Korea and Iran, who would ignore any ethical restrictions. Genii and the bottle scenario.

Continuing research that could help and very likely save the lives of tens of millions of lives trumps your vision of a Kim Jong Il assembled clone army of supermen to conquer the world.

I mean give me a break with this stuff. When we're close to being able to do that, we deal with it then. In the mean time we've got this cancer thing we have to deal with

ckb2001
06-18-2007, 02:45 PM
Yes, when you have that ONE geneticist that defies guidelines and you see a "dolphin man" (can't help but to think of that one South Park episode) on the news...an abomination created out of the discovery of science, then mabe you might understand where those who call for restrain in this line of work are coming from.

I understand where those that oppose it are coming from. It's just that I don't share their values - I have a different set of values. And notwithstanding the quote you gave, scientists do think about the consequences of their research. It's just that they don't necessarily have the same values as those that oppose that research.

Either way, what's important is that in the long run, it's nearly impossible to stop the development and assimilation of technology that is often initially opposed. And it's the ethics of the "opposition" that usually change after that, making the technology more desirable.

PhinPhan1227
06-18-2007, 03:24 PM
Continuing research that could help and very likely save the lives of tens of millions of lives trumps your vision of a Kim Jong Il assembled clone army of supermen to conquer the world.

I mean give me a break with this stuff. When we're close to being able to do that, we deal with it then. In the mean time we've got this cancer thing we have to deal with


Actually, I'm just pointing out an almost innevitable outcome. I didn't say the research wasn't worth it. In fact...I believe I prefaced the comment that I neither favored nor opposed this research.

I am however pointing out that "dealing with it later", can have rather nasty side effects when "later" comes around. Consider, another little aspect that can come from such genetic blending...how about producing humans who are natural carriers of viral plagues? Want to talk about the death of tens of millions? What do you think the effect would be of a few dozen kids smuggled to America that were natually resistant to say the bird flu, but who spread it themselves in their airborne saliva?

Mile High Fin
06-20-2007, 08:20 AM
see how absurd this stuff is? It's like we cant make any advances without some crazy line being drawn between what we have now and the destruction of our society.

I dont see any money in creating centaurs, so I think you can rest easy on that one. And any cloning done will be for organs. I know you guys are real nervous that a new human being may be created with our technology, but I think investing in the ability to replicate organs for cancer patients is a bit more important than your fear that one day the streets will be littered ith horse-men

:lol:
That's a funny image.
Makes me think of the "caveman" Geiko commercials......except with Centaurs going about their daily lives.

Mile High Fin
06-20-2007, 08:21 AM
So we should abandon funding for science that could create new organs for cancer patients because you people are scared of a dolphin-man? Do you realize how ridiculous that is?


:lol:

However, these "dolphin-men" could be assembled to create the most fearsome Miami Dolphins team EVER.....

or not.... :lol:

Eshlemon
06-20-2007, 02:10 PM
:lol:
That's a funny image.
Makes me think of the "caveman" Geiko commercials......except with Centaurs going about their daily lives.

:lol: How about a Planet of Apes scenario?

The_Dark_Knight
06-20-2007, 03:41 PM
So we should abandon funding for science that could create new organs for cancer patients because you people are scared of a dolphin-man? Do you realize how ridiculous that is?
Science developing cures for diseases and to prolong a higher quality of life is one thing...

Science playing with genetics to create life (and yes, creating a fully functional biological organ is creating life) is playing God...and that crosses the line.

Hitler strived for genetic perfection for Germany and was labeled a whacko. Why is it now OK to continue the same concept that he did? because it is US doing it?

The_Dark_Knight
06-20-2007, 03:44 PM
I understand where those that oppose it are coming from. It's just that I don't share their values - I have a different set of values. And notwithstanding the quote you gave, scientists do think about the consequences of their research. It's just that they don't necessarily have the same values as those that oppose that research.

Either way, what's important is that in the long run, it's nearly impossible to stop the development and assimilation of technology that is often initially opposed. And it's the ethics of the "opposition" that usually change after that, making the technology more desirable.
The thing is though...that not ALL scientists share common ethical values.

As I stated before...there will always be ONE scientist that will cross the ethical line. For anyone to think that no scientist has cloned, or attempted to clone a human being is naive...Remember, there's ALWAYS one!!!!!

Megatron
06-20-2007, 03:52 PM
http://www.finheaven.com/images/imported/2007/06/hnewt-1.gifBut Herc, I like having a liver and heart and stuff.

Miamian
06-20-2007, 04:01 PM
Images of the Island of Dr. Moreau. This is approaching the dangers inherit in genetic engineering.

ckb2001
06-20-2007, 05:02 PM
Science developing cures for diseases and to prolong a higher quality of life is one thing...

Science playing with genetics to create life (and yes, creating a fully functional biological organ is creating life) is playing God...and that crosses the line.

Hitler strived for genetic perfection for Germany and was labeled a whacko. Why is it now OK to continue the same concept that he did? because it is US doing it?

I think it's very important to understand that this emerging "playing God" technology of TRUE genetic engineering (especially creating artificial life) will be one of the most revolutionary when it comes to being able to cure diseases, increasing the quality of life, and even prolonging it.

Right now, this technology is mostly not yet in existence, so it's easy to attack it on moral grounds. But, I think what you'll see happen is the same thing that usually happens with technology that is initially controversial: once people see how beneficial it is, the resistance slowly fades away and it becomes accepted (from an ethical point of view).

ckb2001
06-20-2007, 05:14 PM
The thing is though...that not ALL scientists share common ethical values.

As I stated before...there will always be ONE scientist that will cross the ethical line. For anyone to think that no scientist has cloned, or attempted to clone a human being is naive...Remember, there's ALWAYS one!!!!!

Yeah, there are many different value systems represented among the scientific community, no doubt. And just from that fact, some will invariably "cross the line" in some other peoples' minds.

But, inject some realism here on the side of what will ultimately be assimilated or not, and it's hard to argue that the HUGE incentives available for various individuals, companies, militaries, governments, etc.. to gain some form of wealth, power, etc.. by investing in exactly those technologies that often "cross the line" (in for example your mind) will not ultimately lead to the development, use and acceptance (given enough time) of that technology.

And in the end, that's more important (what will happen) than what certain groups think should happen. Like I said, it's the ethics that will change in response to new technologies.

By the way, though it's likely someone may have tried to clone a human, it's virtually certain no one has succeeded. Again though, while almost everyone (including most scientists) are at the moment mildly or strongly against cloning a human being, there are again enough incentives (for example, we've heard people say they might want to clone a lost loved one) for the technology to ultimately become part of our lives sometime far in the future.

PhinPhan1227
06-22-2007, 01:51 PM
I think it's very important to understand that this emerging "playing God" technology of TRUE genetic engineering (especially creating artificial life) will be one of the most revolutionary when it comes to being able to cure diseases, increasing the quality of life, and even prolonging it.

Right now, this technology is mostly not yet in existence, so it's easy to attack it on moral grounds. But, I think what you'll see happen is the same thing that usually happens with technology that is initially controversial: once people see how beneficial it is, the resistance slowly fades away and it becomes accepted (from an ethical point of view).

There have been quite a few behavioral experiments that were found to be unethical and discontinued, despite very valuable information being produced. Likewise, Nazi experiments on humans produced some very valuable data, but the programs were not picked up by the US when they were discovered.

I agree with you that some ethical laines are crossed in the name of expediency...but certainly not all.

ckb2001
06-22-2007, 02:01 PM
There have been quite a few behavioral experiments that were found to be unethical and discontinued, despite very valuable information being produced. Likewise, Nazi experiments on humans produced some very valuable data, but the programs were not picked up by the US when they were discovered.

I agree with you that some ethical laines are crossed in the name of expediency...but certainly not all.

Yeah, there are some exceptions of course. By the way, it's mostly a myth that those Nazi experiments on humans produced "valuable" data. Most of it wasn't that useful (for the resources used).

PhinPhan1227
06-22-2007, 02:10 PM
Yeah, there are some exceptions of course. By the way, it's mostly a myth that those Nazi experiments on humans produced "valuable" data. Most of it wasn't that useful (for the resources used).

Ah, bu there's that qualification. If you don't consider those "resources" to have any value, than it's a different story.

ckb2001
06-22-2007, 02:19 PM
Ah, bu there's that qualification. If you don't consider those "resources" to have any value, than it's a different story.

??

The resources have value.. the results of the experiments - the research - often did not.

PhinPhan1227
06-22-2007, 02:56 PM
??

The resources have value.. the results of the experiments - the research - often did not.


Not everyone considers human beings to be a valuable resource. That's the thing, if you throw the ethics out the window, it was somewhat effective research. More importantly, research which might not have had any other means of being conducted.

ckb2001
06-22-2007, 04:26 PM
Not everyone considers human beings to be a valuable resource. That's the thing, if you throw the ethics out the window, it was somewhat effective research. More importantly, research which might not have had any other means of being conducted.

Yeah, I told you there are some exceptions. But, "effective" research doesn't necessarily mean it's valuable. All I added was that it's mostly a myth much of that research on human subjects the Nazis did was "valuable". Very little of it actually was.

PhinPhan1227
06-22-2007, 05:42 PM
Yeah, I told you there are some exceptions. But, "effective" research doesn't necessarily mean it's valuable. All I added was that it's mostly a myth much of that research on human subjects the Nazis did was "valuable". Very little of it actually was.


Again, if you are using what they considered throw away resources, it doesn't take much of a result to get a good ROI.

On the other hand, some of those behavioral studies DID produce valuable information before they were cut off.

ckb2001
06-22-2007, 07:18 PM
Again, if you are using what they considered throw away resources, it doesn't take much of a result to get a good ROI.

On the other hand, some of those behavioral studies DID produce valuable information before they were cut off.

??

I don't get it. The resources in question - human beings - are valuable. I told you that. The point is, those resources were not used in a way that allowed much in the way of valuable scientific discoveries to be made.

Try yourself and list what discoveries the Nazis made through experimentation on human subjects that science might consider valuable. The list is extremely short, and almost all of it could have been done with animals.

I can think of maybe one example of useful results coming out of experiments with humans (though again it could have been done with animals): studies on hypothermia. But, information that was gained was still of relatively little value, like finding out having sex was no better at warming the body than taking a hot bath, or that people tended to die if their neck was under cold water, not just the body.

You're talking stuff that is worth several scientific research papers for exactly how many resources used??

PhinPhan1227, you have to understand that the Nazis did NOT place much emphasis on how valuable the science was in most of those scientific experiments with humans. It was primarily intended as a method of torture more than anything else.

Point is, what they did simply was NOT good science. So, asking whether other countries would copy that (assuming even NO ethical concerns in a hypothetical scenario) is just not the right question. Most of it was terrible science, wasting resources for little gain.

So, while there do exist some exceptions to what I stated, in general IF the research is deemed valuable, it's hard to stop.

PhinPhan1227
06-23-2007, 12:32 PM
??

I don't get it. The resources in question - human beings - are valuable. I told you that. The point is, those resources were not used in a way that allowed much in the way of valuable scientific discoveries to be made.

Try yourself and list what discoveries the Nazis made through experimentation on human subjects that science might consider valuable. The list is extremely short, and almost all of it could have been done with animals.

I can think of maybe one example of useful results coming out of experiments with humans (though again it could have been done with animals): studies on hypothermia. But, information that was gained was still of relatively little value, like finding out having sex was no better at warming the body than taking a hot bath, or that people tended to die if their neck was under cold water, not just the body.

You're talking stuff that is worth several scientific research papers for exactly how many resources used??

PhinPhan1227, you have to understand that the Nazis did NOT place much emphasis on how valuable the science was in most of those scientific experiments with humans. It was primarily intended as a method of torture more than anything else.

Point is, what they did simply was NOT good science. So, asking whether other countries would copy that (assuming even NO ethical concerns in a hypothetical scenario) is just not the right question. Most of it was terrible science, wasting resources for little gain.

So, while there do exist some exceptions to what I stated, in general IF the research is deemed valuable, it's hard to stop.

You and I put value into human beings. The Nazi's didn't. As far as they were concerned, they were using trash for those experiments.

Likewise, the Soviets also conducted experimentation using prisoners. Experiments on radiation exposure, as well as other things. They didn't consider those humans to have any value either, but I'm sure the experimentation produced results of some value.

ckb2001
06-23-2007, 01:53 PM
You and I put value into human beings. The Nazi's didn't. As far as they were concerned, they were using trash for those experiments.

Likewise, the Soviets also conducted experimentation using prisoners. Experiments on radiation exposure, as well as other things. They didn't consider those humans to have any value either, but I'm sure the experimentation produced results of some value.

Yeah, I understand that. What I'm telling you is that even if you don't consider humans to have much value, the experiments weren't designed in such a way to take much advantage of the resources given.

Forget for a moment how much or how little value humans in those experiments had to the Nazis. GIVEN whatever value they assigned, the value of the discoveries that came out of such experiments are a small fraction of what one could have obtained had they really designed the experiments to maximize the value to science.

For example, why do the same experiments on hypothermia over and over again when the results were already obtained? That's just wasting resources no matter what value you put on them (as long as the value is positive, which is was).

PhinPhan1227
06-23-2007, 05:49 PM
Yeah, I understand that. What I'm telling you is that even if you don't consider humans to have much value, the experiments weren't designed in such a way to take much advantage of the resources given.

Forget for a moment how much or how little value humans in those experiments had to the Nazis. GIVEN whatever value they assigned, the value of the discoveries that came out of such experiments are a small fraction of what one could have obtained had they really designed the experiments to maximize the value to science.

For example, why do the same experiments on hypothermia over and over again when the results were already obtained? That's just wasting resources no matter what value you put on them (as long as the value is positive, which is was).


Well sure. But when your rampant sadism gets in the way, how efficient are you REALLY going to make your experiments? :rolleyes: