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Thread: Worried about Transhumanism? Well, now we can also worry about Chimeras

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    Exclamation Worried about Transhumanism? Well, now we can also worry about Chimeras

    Fringe conspiracy theorists? No, they can stop calling us that, because now it's official and it has hit the mainstream news: privately funded US American scientists are attempting to create human-animal chimeras — hybrids between humans and different species of animals.

    Here's the article in IBTimes...





    "Researchers in the US are creating half-human, half-animal embryos to help save lives, particularly people with a wide range of ailments. The embryos create better animal models to study the occurrence of human diseases and its progression.

    One of the aims of the experiment using chimeras is to create farm animals with human organs. The body parts could then be harvested and transplanted into very sick people, reports Boisestatepublicradio.

    However, a number of bioethicists and scientists frown on the creation of interspecies embryos which they believe crosses the line. New York Medical College Professor of Cell Biology and Anatomy Stuart Newman calls the use of chimeras as entering unsettling ground which damages “our sense of humanity.”

    Ryan Troy and John Powers, from the University of California-Davis (UCD), in a paper titled “Human-Animal Chimeras: What are we going to do?” cites the mention of chimeras in Greek mythology as a monster made up of multiple parts of different animals such as a goat’s body, a lion’s head and a serpent’s tail.

    The two admit that the use of chimeras is controversial, but believe that many scientists think it is not a threat to human dignity. They add that on top of the list of fears on the use of chimeras is that humans and animals should stay as separate entities.

    Because of the question mark on the ethics of its use, the National Institutes of Health has placed a moratorium on funding of chimera experiments, but some researchers resort to alternative funding. In defending the UCD’s creation of chimeras, reproductive biologist Pablo Ross explains, “We’re not trying to make a chimera just because we want to see some kind of monstrous creature … We’re doing this for a biomedical purpose.”

    Ross is attempting to create a pancreas which could be transplanted into a diabetic. He uses new gene-editing techniques to remove the gene which pig embryos need to make a pancreas. Ross injects the human-induced pluripotent stem cells into the pig embryos. For the embryo to develop and produce an organ Ross implanted the chimera embryos into the wombs of adult pigs, injecting 25 embryos into each side of the pig’s uterus.

    After 28 days, Ross would retrieve the chimeric embryos and dissects it to see what the human stem cells are doing inside, if it starts to form a pancreas.

    Arizona State University bioethicists warns that by inserting human DNA into animals and giving the animas some human capacities, it would be “kind of, maybe, even playing God.” But Ross replies, “I don’t consider that we’re playing God or even close to that. We’re just trying to use the technologies that we have developed to improve people’s life.”"
    = DEATH BEFORE DISHONOR =

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    Senior Member Fred Steeves's Avatar
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    Goes hand in hand with "spider goats".
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencete...cientists.html
    The unexamined life is not worth living.

    Socrates

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    Administrator Aragorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Fred Steeves View Post
    Goes hand in hand with "spider goats".
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencete...cientists.html
    Yep, it's not the first time that they make chimeras, but this one here goes a lot farther, because now they are throwing humans into the mix. The ethical implications and potential consequences of these experiments are profound.

    Even though this is privately funded research, I'll give you just a few examples off the top of my head of what could possibly ensue if these experiments are deemed morally acceptable — and with the right amount of propaganda and spin-doctoring, just about anything may become "morally acceptable" in the eyes of the great unwashed masses.

    • It opens the door to more ways by which the military-industrial complex — which is for most part comprised of private enterprises — could be creating so-called supersoldiers.

    • It opens the door to the creation of human-animal hybrids for processing in the food industry, which implies that the (socially accepted) consumption of the flesh of such hybrids would mean that humanity has officially endeavored into cannibalism. And would we even know? Even now, food from genetically modified crops isn't always labelled as such.

    • What rights do these creatures have? Are we going to end up creating a race of slaves with just enough human intelligence to do our dirty work for us, while at the same time we treat them as subhuman on account of everything else? The stereotypical programmable life form in the shape of an alien grey that Barry King and others have spoken about springs to mind.

    • In the event of the last item here-above, given that on the global scale, society is ruled by a financial-economic and capitalist/corporatist system where people have to work (hard) in order to be able to sustain both themselves and their families, wouldn't this mean that corporations would be resorting to the deployment of such hybrids instead of hiring human laborers, with as a result that the poorer members of society would be doomed to wither, leaving only the elite and their hybrid "robots"? Proponents of eugenics such as Bill Gates are already arguing in favor of sterilizing the people in third world countries by way of vaccines in order to keep the global population growth under control and possibly reduce it.

    Like I said, that's just off the top of my head. I haven't even spent much time on contemplating of all the ramifications yet, not to mention that I find the idea in and of itself perverse enough already as it is.

    There's a lot to think about here.
    = DEATH BEFORE DISHONOR =

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    Thanks Aragorn I'm also interested in this subject, having my own "no doubt" speculations that experiments of this nature are well and truly in operation and privately funded, but:

    Who are Ryan Troy and John Powers?

    Ryan Troy and John Powers, from the University of California-Davis (UCD), in a paper titled “Human-Animal Chimeras: What are we going to do?” cites the mention of chimeras in Greek mythology as a monster made up of multiple parts of different animals such as a goat’s body, a lion’s head and a serpent’s tail.
    In their PDF Paper every Bibliography link, links directly to their paper and only their paper?

    http://web.cs.ucdavis.edu/~rogaway/c...all11/p208.pdf

    Bibliography
    Behringer,Richard. “Human-Animal Chimeras in Biomedical Research.”Center forStem elland Developmental Biology. pp.259-262.2007. 9 Nov 2011.

    Cobbe,N., Wilson, V. “Creation of Human—Animal Entities for Translational Stem Cell Research: Scientific explanation of Issues That Are Often Confused” Translation Stem Cell Research: Issue
    s Beyond the Debate on the Moral Status of the Human Embryo.Pp.168-186. Humana Press. 2011. 3 Nov. 2011.

    Cohen, C.“Renewing the Stuff of Life: Stem Cells, Ethics and Public Policy”pp. 120-177. Oxford University Press. 2007. 2 Nov. 2011.

    Degrazia, “Human-Animal Chimeras: Human Dignity, Moral Status, and Species Prejudice.” Journal compilation r 2007 Metaphilosophy LLC and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.Blackwell Publishing LtdMalden, MA 02148, USA METAPHILOSOPHY Vol. 38, Nos. 2–3, April 007. 5 Nov. 2011.

    Hyun I., Taylor P., Testa G., Dickens B., Jung K.W., McNab A., Robertson J., Zoloth L.“Ethical StandardsFor Human-to-Animal chimera Experiments in Stem Cell Research”Cell Stem Cell.Science Direct.Pp.159-163. 2007. Web.11 Nov 2011.

    Lensch .,SchlaegerT., Zon, L., Daley G. “Teratoma Formation Assays with Human Embryonic Stem Cells: A Rationale for One Type of Human-Animal Chimera” Cell Stem Cell. Science Direct. 13 Sep. 2007. 1 Nov. 2011.

    Mott, Maryann. “Animal-Human Hybrids Spark Controversy”National Geographic. National Geographic Society. 25 Jan. 2005. Web. 2 Nov. 2011.
    Sorry I haven't had time to look further, so wondering if you have more info to verify.
    Thank you
    Cheers
    Gemma

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    Many hallmarks out there pointing to the descent into a new dark age, with only the tiniest fraction of the people thinking wait a minute, I don't want this. The saddest thing about a dark age IMO, is that scant few even realize it.

    With great knowledge comes great power, but also great sorrow.
    The unexamined life is not worth living.

    Socrates

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    I agree Fred, and as disturbing as it may be for information of this intensity to come into public awareness I actually thirst for it because then we can actually have discussions with those in our local vicinity whilst providing solid referential evidence at the same time - rather than only having to rely on our known intelligence, which in more cases than not, renders our conversations into the "yeah right, you can't honestly be serious" category.

    This is not a criticism on my family, friends and acquaintances responses for their humanitarianism, ethical and empathic heart qualities are sound, and is actually why they can't believe, without evidence, for they could not imagine themselves resorting to perform such scientific experimentation. But from my perspective of always trying to understand the other shoe, by imagining walking in that shoe, I can't imagine why any scientist would not be tempted to explore the unknown arena of transhumanism or chimera manipulation.

    So if we can obtain more and more validity of what goes on "covertly" I believe we gain an empowering advantage, for greater awareness would certainly generate more contributors to the discussion. More contributors equates to more decision makers, imho

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    Quote Originally posted by Fred Steeves View Post
    Many hallmarks out there pointing to the descent into a new dark age, with only the tiniest fraction of the people thinking wait a minute, I don't want this. The saddest thing about a dark age IMO, is that scant few even realize it.

    With great knowledge comes great power, but also great sorrow.

    We, as humans have abilities and talents that far surpass our wisdom and understanding of things outside our own self interest. Personally, this scares the crap out of me. I believe that there are genetically manipulated beings, right at this very moment, hidden in secrecy that would blow our minds.

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    It was ten years ago that Bush made his statement regarding passing legislation to prevent human/animal hybrids. There continue, sporadically, to be attempts, often tacking something on to anti-abortion bills. It seems to be mostly at the state level.

    The defenses given are all about saving lives and treating disease. That's the portal this stuff comes through.

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    See here's what gets me. I think we've been down this road before, nothing new under the sun.

    Cycles, and cycles within cycles.
    The unexamined life is not worth living.

    Socrates

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    Quote Originally posted by Dreamtimer View Post
    The defenses given are all about saving lives and treating disease. That's the portal this stuff comes through.
    Absolutely, it's the greatest seller - if it can heal then how can it be bad! And when we open up that conversation it is really insightful, for the parent with a deformed child will lean towards anything to make their child physically capable - what parent wouldn't - and as a parent I could not, would not, argue against this passion. What I detest though is the controlling censorship which results in only one one creative innovation to improve disabilities being tabled.

    This is why the "one creative innovation", which is abhorrent, finally coming into the light of day in mainstream awareness, is a potential positive for me, for it will also provide the opportunity for the other, far more intelligent and humane solutions, to join the discussion - now that we are, albeit in infancy, reaching a far greater levelled playing field of open-source communication!

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    The Alien Hunter, Derrel Sims, said that the supreme leader of the ETs is a human-reptilian hybrid. He believes that this DNA manipulation has been going on for many thousands of years and that all of the DNA involved is of earth origin.

    Humans screwing around with DNA is kind of like a computer program rewriting it's own code. Can it really know the ramifications of what it's doing?

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    Schweinen wachsen Menschenohren
    und wir schreiben fest in Foren.

    who kann translate this into a rhyme ?

    pigs are growing human ears
    humans crying fearful tears.

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    Does anyone recall the story of 'original sin' told to Mary Summer Rain by No Eyes? It involved creation of chimeras which was an Abomination and the Great Flood was part of the cleansing of this sin. (I'm reaching back into the dim archives)

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    Quote Originally posted by Dreamtimer View Post
    The Alien Hunter, Derrel Sims, said that the supreme leader of the ETs is a human-reptilian hybrid. He believes that this DNA manipulation has been going on for many thousands of years and that all of the DNA involved is of earth origin.

    Humans screwing around with DNA is kind of like a computer program rewriting it's own code. Can it really know the ramifications of what it's doing?
    You got me puttin' on a smiley face, so okay, how far down the questionable equation do we want to apply our intelligence? What chimeras are we derived from??

    But of course that will lead us to a never ending conversation of history, creation, and the like, when perhaps many of us now know where that infinity search leads, or should I say doesn't lead. So is today actually where we should be applying our intelligent heart and thought processes to. Creations are there, we are a creation, we know of other creations. What do we want to apply to the creative process now?

    And I do not personally believe that we need to be clinically classified as "scientists" to have skin in the game, so to speak.

    Schweinen wachsen Menschenohren
    und wir schreiben fest in Foren.

    who kann translate this into a rhyme ?

    pigs are growing human ears
    humans crying fearful tears.
    My google translate says:

    Pigs grow human ears
    and we write firmly in forums.

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    Administrator Aragorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dreamtimer View Post
    The Alien Hunter, Derrel Sims, said that the supreme leader of the ETs is a human-reptilian hybrid. He believes that this DNA manipulation has been going on for many thousands of years and that all of the DNA involved is of earth origin.
    Well, there is still a difference — at least, in my humble opinion — between a hybrid created from two or more sapient species, and a hybrid created from a sapient species and a non-sapient species.

    Quote Originally posted by Dreamtimer View Post
    Humans screwing around with DNA is kind of like a computer program rewriting it's own code. Can it really know the ramifications of what it's doing?
    Self-modifying computer code does exist. Among other things, this ability of a computer program to modify its own code is the basis of artificial intelligence, but at a less ambitious scale, it is also how a so-called worm works. It modifies its own code in order to avoid detection. And of course, it doesn't "know" anything, because it's just a very cleverly designed algorithm.

    As for whether humans know what they're doing, I think we've seen ample evidence already all over the pages of history that they don't (*), and from the looks of what appears in the mainstream media news every day, the vast majority of them probably never will.


    (*) "My God, what have I done?"
    (Robert Oppenheimer, upon witnessing the detonation of the first nuclear bomb)


    = DEATH BEFORE DISHONOR =

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