2007-01-12

In Defence of the Chimera

This Economist opinion article provides a defence for the creation of chimeras and encourages the expansion of this line of research.

*Update* A classic amusing post from DeLong from a while ago.

1 comment:

Mark said...

As the Economist stated, this is largely a non-issue blown out of control by tabloid papers and the resulting timidity of British regulators of genetic research. Ultimately, it is yet another ignorant attack by nonspecialist people against research that they cannot and do not want to comprehend. Even if these chimeras were brought to term, they would be normal people like the rest of us, except that their mitochondria would come from cattle/rabbits. This alarms people because they have no comprehension of the fact that mitochondria are in essence symbiotic bacteria that live in every eukaryotic cell, reproduce separately from those cells according to their own DNA and assist in cellular respiratory functions (the details I will leave to biological experts to correct, but I believe I am right in essence). Then again, if people knew this much, they might try to ban this "alien" mitochondria altogether...'get those weird bacteria out of our human cells'!