AHB NOTE: Without notifying the public, researchers at Cornell University have created the world's first genetically modified (GM) human embryos. The United States stands as a largely unregulated maverick in a global community where many other countries have prohibited human genetic modification, seeking to avoid launching an era of "designer" children and "techno-eugenics" without public awareness or input. After reading this notice from the independent watch-dog group, HumanGenetics Alert, GET ACTIVE and join others calling for a moratorium on "designer baby" technology.
AHB NOTE: This article reports how the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) is poised to disburse vast sums for the construction of new laboratories to conduct embryonic stem cell (ESC) research at California universities. Here's what the article does not relate: 1) these new labs were planned, in part, because the Bush administration currently prohibits the federal funding of labs conducting research using ESCs derived after August 2001, 2) a Democratic presidential win in November will bring removal of such funding restrictions -- making California's construction of its new labs unnecessary, 3) California, billions of dollars in debt, is cutting back on education and other elements of vital infrastructure, 3) ESC research -- highly speculative and flush with patenting possibilities for its scientist-entrepreneurs -- requires the eggs of young women, and 4) CIRM members are seeking ways to override the previous commitment not to pay women to compromise their health by undergoing the egg harvesting procedure necessary to acquire their eggs (see: CIRM to Pay for Eggs? ).
AHB NOTE: This Washington Post article relates how researchers will soon breach lines never crossed before by creating previously non-existent life forms out of completely synthetic DNA.The blurry border between “natural” and “artificial” will be blended beyond recognition and evolutionary processes will be human-directed in ways previously unimagined.Research boosters gleefully predict organisms that will create exotic fuels and drugs. Critics warn of virulent new pathogens for horrific use in bio-weaponry.Regardless of intent, the new organisms will be self-replicating.Even in the best of circumstances, could their control, and the public’s safety, be ensured?Should answering such a question be left to corporations that will profit lavishly from patents and sales?Please encourage others you know to join the AHB Network to increase public scrutiny of these important issues.
AHB NOTE: The lead researcher of this development reports he is "quite sure it will work in humans." What are some of the unintended consequences of primate cloning? Read the AHB comment, Ushering in the New Eugenics.