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Harvard students are cloning embryos for stem cells

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posted on Jun, 6 2006 @ 07:08 PM
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yahoo news


Cloning an embryo means taking DNA from a person and inserting it into an egg, which is then grown for about five days until it is an early embryo, a hollow ball of cells smaller than a grain of sand. Stem cells can then be recovered from the interior, and spurred to give rise to specialized cells or tissues that carry the DNA of the donor.



Despite criticism, Harvard students are now working on creating life....sorry, a hollow ball of cells, so they can strip it and try to save others.

I understand the desperation of scientists to find cures for illnesses. It is no fun to sit around and watch someone else suffer. How can someone who is working to help ease the pain of others, destroy life to acomplish that? I dont understand these rules!!!

Due to the fact that the Govt. refuses to financially support this research, the state of California has stepped up to the plate. usatoday

[edit on 6-6-2006 by mrsdudara]




posted on Jun, 6 2006 @ 10:03 PM
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Actually, this hollow ball of cells, called a blastula, is as far we have have gotten in cloning humans. There are literally hundreds of tiny hormone gradients that must be absolutely perfect in order for human development to progress. We have yet to master the processes necessary for this to occur. So, despite the sensationalism the press presents with regard to human cloning, it is, as yet, just a gleam in some Harvard scientists eye.

MFP



posted on Jun, 7 2006 @ 07:41 AM
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Well I still think that is a pretty nasty gleam in his eye.

I have read up on this more, and I understand that they use eggs they believe would never be able to turn into embryos anyway. I also read that there is another way to get these stem cells. If I am not mistaken they said they could get them from skin cells. It is just too difficult. They have stated that they understand it crosses a line, but they need to continue on with the research of human cloning. How much longer before their obsession takes them on that path that was discussed a while back where they pay women to have abortions so they could use their babies stem cells? I just do not see a happy ending to this. What happens when they do successfully clone a person? Will it turn out to be like the matrix where we have thousands of babies growing in tubes so we can harvest them for their cells? I DO NOT want to be part of that kind of civilization.

Sometimes the best way is the more difficult way. Why dont they just take another route?



posted on Jun, 7 2006 @ 05:29 PM
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Originally posted by mrsdudara
Well I still think that is a pretty nasty gleam in his eye.

I have read up on this more, and I understand that they use eggs they believe would never be able to turn into embryos anyway. I also read that there is another way to get these stem cells. If I am not mistaken they said they could get them from skin cells. It is just too difficult. They have stated that they understand it crosses a line, but they need to continue on with the research of human cloning. How much longer before their obsession takes them on that path that was discussed a while back where they pay women to have abortions so they could use their babies stem cells? I just do not see a happy ending to this. What happens when they do successfully clone a person? Will it turn out to be like the matrix where we have thousands of babies growing in tubes so we can harvest them for their cells? I DO NOT want to be part of that kind of civilization.

Sometimes the best way is the more difficult way. Why dont they just take another route?


If only we could get them from skin cells. Your source obviously failed to mention to you the idea of totipotent and pluripotent cells. Please research those terms and then tell me skin cells are just as useful a source.

MFP



posted on Jun, 8 2006 @ 08:36 AM
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I read about it on another news article. I dont know much about the medical stuff. Isnt there anywhere else they could get the stem cells? How about the placenta?



posted on Jun, 8 2006 @ 04:55 PM
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Originally posted by mrsdudara
I read about it on another news article. I dont know much about the medical stuff. Isnt there anywhere else they could get the stem cells? How about the placenta?


Unfortunately, it does not appear at this time that we can gleen totipotent stem cells from any source other than the inner cell mass (ICM) of early stage embryos. The main thing you need to keep in mind here is that adult somatic cells, such as placental, skin, umbilical, nervous, hematopoietic, etc. are all fully differentiated in their adult form. The bone marrow stem cells which some anti-stem cell folks claim are just as useful as embryonic stem cells simply aren't. When a cell is on the path to becoming a specific cell, it undergoes three major phases: commitment, specification, and differentiation. At the bone marrow stem cells phase, the cells have already undergone the first step, making it impossible for them to become certain cells of the body, namely nervous and muscle tissue.

MFP



posted on Jun, 8 2006 @ 05:01 PM
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That is interesting.

So what is your view on the subject? honestly. How do you feel about it moraly, and scientifically?



posted on Jun, 8 2006 @ 06:54 PM
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Originally posted by mrsdudara
That is interesting.

So what is your view on the subject? honestly. How do you feel about it moraly, and scientifically?


Morally, and scientifically, I see no problem with it. The basic process in use now does not create an embryo nor is it capable of creating life. Scientists typically take a donated egg cell, not an embryo, an egg cell, and then they enucleate it, that is, remove the egg's nucleus. This egg was never fertilized, and is thus no different than a woman expelling an egg naturally. It is simply an unused egg. The nucleus of an adult somatic cell is then introduced, creating a diploid egg, thus it now has the same amount of genetic material that it would have had if it had been fertilized (23 pairs of chromosomes). Chemical signals are then used to kick start the division cycle. At a certain point, often during the second stage (gastrulation), the embryo will self terminate because the nucleus does not contain the mRNA needed for further development. This process is called somatic nuclear transfer (SNT).

The eggs used in this process are often donated by women who no longer want children, and the process never creates anything capable of developing to term or even past about 3 weeks. It seems to me people are afraid of something they don't understand, almost like stem cell research is the latest Frankenstein's monster.

MFP



posted on Jun, 8 2006 @ 07:31 PM
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Ok, so they (basicly) use a skin cell or what ever instead of a germline cell. That way, it has no chance what so ever of dividing, and creating life. right?

If that is the case then I guess it is not the Frankenstein I thought it was.

If they can not get this to work, do you think that they would go ahead and take it one step further?



posted on Jun, 8 2006 @ 09:54 PM
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Originally posted by mrsdudara
Ok, so they (basicly) use a skin cell or what ever instead of a germline cell. That way, it has no chance what so ever of dividing, and creating life. right?

If that is the case then I guess it is not the Frankenstein I thought it was.

If they can not get this to work, do you think that they would go ahead and take it one step further?


Yes, I think if the somatic nuclear transfer ends up not showing the promise they think it will, they will revert to the old system of using cloned embryos from fertilization treatments. I still have no ethical problem with this. My view of it is that every life has a purpose. How am I to know that the embryo on my slide isn't going to find the cure for Parkinsons? I just cannot rationalize wasting an otherwise unused embryo when it could very well be the key to solving a medical condition.

MFP



posted on Jun, 12 2006 @ 09:41 AM
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This subject has been debated quite heatedly in my household as I have been very "anti" stem cell research. However, I have no problem with scientists using the thousands of embryos that are voluntarily aborted each day for their experiments and, once they have perfected the use of the embryos for diseases, administering the stem cells to those in need. My husband has a very serious nerve injury (the entire bunch of nerves which serve his arm have been completely pulled out of his spine) which causes him severe pain - he says it feels like his whole arm is lying in a pot of boiling oil while at the same time somebody is crushing each individual finger in a vice! The doctors are clueless as to how to help with pain relief for this injury and he has been told that the only way that he will get any relief whatsoever is if the scientists finally perfect the use of stem cells (which can then be used to "re-grow" his nerves). Needless to say, I have now come to the conclusion that, provided nobody is hurt or killed specifically for the harvesting of the stem cells, the research should be allowed to continue - full steam ahead! Amazing how one's opinion on a matter can change quite dramatically when it effects you directly!



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