Jump to content

Welcome to Second Shifters Forums
Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to create topics, post replies to existing threads, give reputation to your fellow members, get your own private messenger, post status updates, manage your profile and so much more. If you already have an account, login here - otherwise create an account for free today!
Photo

Animal-Human Hybrids Spark Controversy


  • Please log in to reply
13 replies to this topic

#1
Atnevon

Atnevon

    The Architect

  • Admin
  • 5,673 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:posing in a pink tutu and donning a tiara
Animal-Human Hybrids Spark Controversy
Maryann Mott
National Geographic News
January 25, 2005

Scientists have begun blurring the line between human and animal by producing chimeras�a hybrid creature that's part human, part animal.

Chinese scientists at the Shanghai Second Medical University in 2003 successfully fused human cells with rabbit eggs. The embryos were reportedly the first human-animal chimeras successfully created. They were allowed to develop for several days in a laboratory dish before the scientists destroyed the embryos to harvest their stem cells.

In Minnesota last year researchers at the Mayo Clinic created pigs with human blood flowing through their bodies.

And at Stanford University in California an experiment might be done later this year to create mice with human brains.

Scientists feel that, the more humanlike the animal, the better research model it makes for testing drugs or possibly growing "spare parts," such as livers, to transplant into humans.

Watching how human cells mature and interact in a living creature may also lead to the discoveries of new medical treatments.

But creating human-animal chimeras�named after a monster in Greek mythology that had a lion's head, goat's body, and serpent's tail�has raised troubling questions: What new subhuman combination should be produced and for what purpose? At what point would it be considered human? And what rights, if any, should it have?

There are currently no U.S. federal laws that address these issues.

Ethical Guidelines

The National Academy of Sciences, which advises the U.S. government, has been studying the issue. In March it plans to present voluntary ethical guidelines for researchers.

A chimera is a mixture of two or more species in one body. Not all are considered troubling, though.

For example, faulty human heart valves are routinely replaced with ones taken from cows and pigs. The surgery�which makes the recipient a human-animal chimera�is widely accepted. And for years scientists have added human genes to bacteria and farm animals.

What's caused the uproar is the mixing of human stem cells with embryonic animals to create new species.

Biotechnology activist Jeremy Rifkin is opposed to crossing species boundaries, because he believes animals have the right to exist without being tampered with or crossed with another species.

He concedes that these studies would lead to some medical breakthroughs. Still, they should not be done.

"There are other ways to advance medicine and human health besides going out into the strange, brave new world of chimeric animals," Rifkin said, adding that sophisticated computer models can substitute for experimentation on live animals.

"One doesn't have to be religious or into animal rights to think this doesn't make sense," he continued. "It's the scientists who want to do this. They've now gone over the edge into the pathological domain."

David Magnus, director of the Stanford Center for Biomedical Ethics at Stanford University, believes the real worry is whether or not chimeras will be put to uses that are problematic, risky, or dangerous.

Human Born to Mice Parents?

For example, an experiment that would raise concerns, he said, is genetically engineering mice to produce human sperm and eggs, then doing in vitro fertilization to produce a child whose parents are a pair of mice.

"Most people would find that problematic," Magnus said, "but those uses are bizarre and not, to the best of my knowledge, anything that anybody is remotely contemplating. Most uses of chimeras are actually much more relevant to practical concerns."

Last year Canada passed the Assisted Human Reproduction Act, which bans chimeras. Specifically, it prohibits transferring a nonhuman cell into a human embryo and putting human cells into a nonhuman embryo.

Cynthia Cohen is a member of Canada's Stem Cell Oversight Committee, which oversees research protocols to ensure they are in accordance with the new guidelines.

She believes a ban should also be put into place in the U.S.

Creating chimeras, she said, by mixing human and animal gametes (sperms and eggs) or transferring reproductive cells, diminishes human dignity.

"It would deny that there is something distinctive and valuable about human beings that ought to be honored and protected," said Cohen, who is also the senior research fellow at Georgetown University's Kennedy Institute of Ethics in Washington, D.C.

But, she noted, the wording on such a ban needs to be developed carefully. It shouldn't outlaw ethical and legitimate experiments�such as transferring a limited number of adult human stem cells into animal embryos in order to learn how they proliferate and grow during the prenatal period.

Irv Weissman, director of Stanford University's Institute of Cancer/Stem Cell Biology and Medicine in California, is against a ban in the United States.

"Anybody who puts their own moral guidance in the way of this biomedical science, where they want to impose their will�not just be part of an argument�if that leads to a ban or moratorium. … they are stopping research that would save human lives," he said.

Mice With Human Brains

Weissman has already created mice with brains that are about one percent human.

Later this year he may conduct another experiment where the mice have 100 percent human brains. This would be done, he said, by injecting human neurons into the brains of embryonic mice.

Before being born, the mice would be killed and dissected to see if the architecture of a human brain had formed. If it did, he'd look for traces of human cognitive behavior.

Weissman said he's not a mad scientist trying to create a human in an animal body. He hopes the experiment leads to a better understanding of how the brain works, which would be useful in treating diseases like Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease.

The test has not yet begun. Weissman is waiting to read the National Academy's report, due out in March.

William Cheshire, associate professor of neurology at the Mayo Clinic's Jacksonville, Florida, branch, feels that combining human and animal neurons is problematic.

"This is unexplored biologic territory," he said. "Whatever moral threshold of human neural development we might choose to set as the limit for such an experiment, there would be a considerable risk of exceeding that limit before it could be recognized."

Cheshire supports research that combines human and animal cells to study cellular function. As an undergraduate he participated in research that fused human and mouse cells.

But where he draws the ethical line is on research that would destroy a human embryo to obtain cells, or research that would create an organism that is partly human and partly animal.

"We must be cautious not to violate the integrity of humanity or of animal life over which we have a stewardship responsibility," said Cheshire, a member of Christian Medical and Dental Associations. "Research projects that create human-animal chimeras risk disturbing fragile ecosystems, endanger health, and affront species integrity."

Source: National Geographic
The sky was the color of a television, tuned to a dead channel. - William Gibson

#2
Enki Anunaki

Enki Anunaki

    Necromancer Extraordinaire

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,477 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Necropolis, Alaska
  • Interests:Yum! Toasty souls of the damned!
:ph34r:
am i the only one who finds this to be very disturbing?...

a new era of genetic diseases brought about by the needless tampering by human hands...

in nature the weak do not survive...
this should true of humans...

#3
Qryztufre

Qryztufre

    Daisy-Head Maizie

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,070 posts
  • Location:Athens, TN
  • Interests:Making the world a better place one smile at a time.
OH OH OH....by the Gods! It's like the Rats of NIHM!

#4
Dirk

Dirk

    There is one?

  • Moderators
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,502 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:behind you
  • Interests:Totally out of whack.
You should read the franciscus complot by dean koontz to see what this might bring.
Unauthorized Copying is not only forbidden, but will prey upon your conscience, spoil your sleep, destroy your complexion, and eventually will wind up turning you into the kind of person who drinks methylated spirits out of a bottle hidden in a brown paper bag, and who lives under bridges, burps noxiously, and prays day and night for release from the unsupportable burden their life has become. We thought you'd appreciate the warning.
Originally from a Neil Gaiman cd, so i might suffer from all the things mentioned above.

#5
Pustulant Hair

Pustulant Hair

    Roleplay Storyteller

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 203 posts
  • Location:Phnom Penh
  • Interests:Surgical Sound Specimens from the Museum of Skin
thats fucking awesome.

#6
Mattom

Mattom

    I know this because Mattom knows this.

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1,330 posts
  • Location:Colombia
  • Interests:Music, literature, sex, people, culture, writing, software, web design, fashion, movies, moviemaking, playwriting, playwrights, goth, techno, wisdom, loneliness, void in the heart, Village obliteration, Squirrely wrath, my ex, traveling.
In a time where we kill people pointlessly and for the minutest reasons, shouldn't this be a motive of joy? The chance of having human presence in other beings of nature that can help us cure diseases and discover medical options we couldn't even imagine? Remember, the necessities of the most over power the needs of the few... or the one.









On the other hand, "Cynthia Cohen is a member of Canada's Stem Cell Oversight Committee..." Canada has a Stem Cell Oversight Committee? Why would they?



:ph34r:
I love mankind, it's people I can't stand.
[URL]YOU CAN'T UNDERSTAND THIS WAR

[URL=http://www.sloganizer.net/en/]user posted image

#7
Tool

Tool

    Gothic Angst

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 163 posts
  • Location:Somewhere on my network

You should read the franciscus complot by dean koontz to see what this might bring.

The Watchers comes to mind.

I have thought about this many times and think that much good will come from this science as well as great harm. It's going to happen if we like it or not. One of my fears is genetically altered bacterium that makes the flesh eating kind look like a yogurt culture. They already have bacterium that eat oil spills and nuclear waste. I don't think there will be too many monsters on the killer bee level as of yet but they will turn up sooner or later. But the tiny ones sure will. As for super mice taking over the world I think there will be too many Pinkies around to get in their way.

#8
Mattom

Mattom

    I know this because Mattom knows this.

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1,330 posts
  • Location:Colombia
  • Interests:Music, literature, sex, people, culture, writing, software, web design, fashion, movies, moviemaking, playwriting, playwrights, goth, techno, wisdom, loneliness, void in the heart, Village obliteration, Squirrely wrath, my ex, traveling.
:blink:
I love mankind, it's people I can't stand.
[URL]YOU CAN'T UNDERSTAND THIS WAR

[URL=http://www.sloganizer.net/en/]user posted image

#9
Neuralinput

Neuralinput

    Horton Hatches The Egg

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 35 posts
  • Location:Wisconsin (Mmmmm Cheese)
All they need to do now is cross a human with the regenerative properties of a sponge or a starfish and we'll all be doomed. For there will be one human to rule them all. O.o Ummmm, mice with human brains... I'm going to start investing in aresnic now... and flamethrowers, for that is how we will stop the swarms of mice. If all else fails, we will go to the moon... but we know the mice will come to steal our cheese!

To all those mice with human brains out there.'
Stay the frick away from my moon. It's mine. you can't have it!

Okay. I'm done ranting.

:blink:

Seriously though, these scientists are crazy. Burn them all before they frick up the rest of us!
I am the freakiest freak
Which makes me king
And If I am King
i get to choose my Queen
And that will be you, my love
And we will take the moon
So that we can have CHEESE!

#10
Aphotic

Aphotic

    Green Eggs And Ham

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 269 posts
  • Location:Missouri
hmmm, right now, the die have been tossed, all possiblities are open, if we're lucky and humans dont fuck this up like everything else we do scientifically, there could be physically enhanced humans walking the earth at some point. Very interesting shit, I have to agree with pustulant.

My sig is short simple and sweet, very much unlike life.


user posted image

#11
RedR0se

RedR0se

    Daisy-Head Maizie

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,001 posts
  • Interests:Dancing, Music.... Love.. :)
This subject kind of scares me bit.... no one should mess with nature, things are the way they are because they are meant to be that way. However I do not oppose research, I keep my mind open to it but it scares the shit out of me.

#12
Tool

Tool

    Gothic Angst

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 163 posts
  • Location:Somewhere on my network
I agree Red. There are so many things that can go wrong with this area. We have barely scratched the surface of the science and as we have proof from the past, there will be mistakes made. Look at all the mistakes made when we discovered radioactive material and that's just a few basic elements and isotopes. I wouldn't mind finding a site that tracked all of the genetic changed plants and animals. I bet there are already thousands of different ones in the US alone.
Posted Image
Remember this gal the glow in the dark rabbit that was created a few years ago by The Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique in France. Alba was an albino rabbit engineered by splicing the green fluorescent protein (GFP) of a jellyfish into her genome. She glowed like this under blacklight.

Web link It just keep getting stranger.

A few years ago a biotech corporation applied to the European Patent
Office for a patent on a so-called "pharm-woman", the idea being to
genetically engineer human females so that their breast-milk would
contain specialized pharmaceuticals. Work is also on going to use
genetic engineering to grow human breasts in the laboratory. It doesn't
take much imagination to realize that not only would they be used for
breast replacement needed due to cancer surgery, but also to foster a
vigorous commercial demand by women in search of the "perfect" breasts.
A geneticist has recently proposed genetically engineering headless
humans to be used for body parts. Some prominent geneticists have
supported his idea.

#13
Sin

Sin

    All 7 Sins, and about to be your eighth

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 219 posts
  • Location:Canada...
So if you were to mate with one of these chimera creatures (were they to let one fully develop) would it just be another warped fetish, or would it be bestiality? lol That would be disturbing, and grey out the lines of where bestiality begins & ends, severely *shudders*

Xxx-SIN-xxX
{Water} "Sin is the epitome of the seven deadly sins... she can drive a man to do all of them."

#14
Hegemone

Hegemone

    Horton Hears A Who

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 64 posts
  • Location:Where Reality Begins To Fade
Blacklight rabbit? I heard about that being done with a monkey.....Is there anyone else that thinks blacklight tattoos would be cool?




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users