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Re: Talk of Banning Research into Human Cloning (fwd)



Forwarded message:

> Date: Wed, 14 Jan 1998 12:31:04 +0000 (GMT)
> From: "David E. Smith" <[email protected]>
> Subject: Re: Talk of Banning Research into Human Cloning (fwd)

> > I wonder if it is the intention of those who support a ban on human cloning
> > to prevent my friend who lost his forearm in the Vietnam War from having a
> > new one grown and attached?
> 
> Yup. Unless there's some remarkable breakthrough, you can't just grow an
> eyeball, or a kidney, or whatever. You've gotta grow the whole body. In
> time, we might be able to genegineer the process for optimal production of
> the targeted body part, likely with all sorts of side effects that would
> be, er, detrimental in a "real" person.

Actualy, at least according to one episode of that show on TDC that Skully
form the X-Files hosts, there are several groups who are working on just
this thing. One female researcher has extended the life of worms (admittedly
a step or two from humans) by 7 times with no apparent effect. There was a
piece on CNN late last nite about some researchers discussing this as well.
Their estimate is that it would be at least 5 years before there would be
anything available on the open market.

There is also at least two groups working on growing specific organs. One
group (the one interviewed on the TDC show) is using plastic forms to grow
the organs in. They can apparently grow small samples of specific cells and
are looking at how to organize the growth of more complex structures such as
a kidney which would include blood-vessels and such.

I am sorry I don't know the name of the show. If somebody out there does
please speak up.

My prediction is that within 15 years there will be methods to extend human
life by at least a factor of 3 and techniques to replace every organ or
structure with the persons own cells (thus alleviating all tissue rejection
problems) through accellerated growth mechanism based on cloning in such a
way that cancer, accidents, etc. will become at best temporary tragedies.

In short, unless you get your head or entire torso squished there will be
methods to keep people alive for periods approaching 200 years. Further,
these techniques will be available through standard insurance via your
employer because they will be low cost (that's the nice thing about
bio-science).



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