Genetic Engineering

Discussion in 'Rants' started by Euchale, Oct 27, 2015.

  1. Euchale

    Euchale Crazy German Guy




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    Euchale is going to start a thread again oh noes!

    [​IMG]

    So I´ve been reading "Engineering the Human Germline" John Campbell which is a discussion on what technologies are available today and what the moral implications are. It consists of various comments by scientists/ethicists so there is a pletora of various opinions. I will try to condense these down, as some of the comments have repeated opinions. Also the book is quite old, so if there has been advances in a certain field, I will add it in.

    People on both sides agree that first all of the technical problems need to be resolved.
    Also when talking about genetic engineering there are various degrees:
    1. Somatic Engineering is when you give people a chemical to activate/deactivate certain genes.
    2. Corrective Engineering is the first step of germline engineering. You manipulate the DNA in a sperm or egg to correct a inherited disease.
    3. Enchanting Engineering is the changing of certain genes to change mainly physical appearance, like eye or hair color.
    4. Eugenic Engineering is the changing of complex personal traits like intelligence or behavior.

    Except for 1 all of the others have one of the biggest problems from a ethical standpoint. That is, that you inherit modified genes onto your children. Here are some techniques that are already being used in mice and can be used to get around this problem:

    You can form a "pocket" around the gene. This pocket needs a certain chemical to be activated. It will do it´s function only if it is activated, so you could potentionally ask as soon as they grow up whether they want to turn it on or not.
    Another use of this "pocket" would be, that you can make it so another chemical allows you to remove it. This is how the first germline engineering will most probably done, to insure we have options to reverse it, if something goes wrong.

    Another thing that will be possible, is that same sex couples will become able to have kids with genetic input of both parents. This is made possible by the use of iPS-cells. You get these cells by reprogramming your "normal" cells to go back into a previous state, where they can still become any type of cell within your body. Here is an article on the topic:
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/12/101208151611.htm
    I would particularly be interested what MilleudaMilleuda thinks about this topic.

    Here is a general discussion on the topic in general:
     
    #1 Euchale, Oct 27, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2015
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  2. Milleuda

    Milleuda Mother Hen




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    This is definitely interesting. Thanks for sharing this EuchaleEuchale.

    I obviously have two biases (plural?) here. One of which is that I work in health care, so I see us "curing" things all the time. This reminds me a lot of using stem cells to cure disease. Granted, it isn't modification but it feels similar in this sense (at least to someone like me). I do believe genetic modification is the future of medicine anyway since medications can only take you so far before they either reach their limit or become ineffective due to biological adaptation.

    My second bias is that I don't want children (lol). However, many same sex couples proceed with in vitro fertilization because they want one of their DNA's to be part of their children. I can understand the need for this as it is human nature to want children and care for your own. My counterargument to that sentiment is that there are already too many people in the world, many of which don't have a safe place to call home. Same sex couples who would be great parents could change an existing life through adoption instead of adding to the world's growing population problem.

    But, that's a different topic. And it doesn't matter anyway since the reapers will wipe out all organics anyway (sorry, Mass Effect reference lol).
     
  3. Euchale

    Euchale Crazy German Guy




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    I saw a very fitting comic on this topic:
    [​IMG]
     
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  4. Milleuda

    Milleuda Mother Hen




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    I love that comic. I need to save it and frame it somewhere in my apartment.

    My parents will be speechless... lol
     
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  5. sweetloaf

    sweetloaf




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    Bring on the mutagens, baby. I'm ready to sprout some new nipples!
     
  6. dainjre

    dainjre Generously Compensated Establishment Provocateur




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    I'm with Sweetloaf on this. Cover me in ooze and see what happens. Something awesome I bet! [​IMG]
     
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  7. sweetloaf

    sweetloaf




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    TGRI! TGRI! TGRI! TGRI!

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G870A using Tapatalk
     
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