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Cloning License for Dolly's Doc

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the not-baaaaad dept.

Biotech 290

Rollie Hawk writes "Ian Wilmut, leader of Dolly the sheep's team and Professor at the Roslin Institute in Edinburgh, has been given the green light by the British government's Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority to start further cloning research. As a matter of fact, he is now a licensed human cloner. The license has a duration of one year and is the second of its kind given by Britain, the first country to officially sanction human cloning research. Research will be focusing on motor neurone disease (MND). The team hopes to perform cell nuclear replacement on the skin cells of MND victims in order to create stem cells, the jack-of-all-trades of the cell family and the supposed magic bullets for ailments ranging from Alzheimer's to paralysis.

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Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (3, Interesting)

beh (4759) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611509)

I am not sure, whether this is really such a grand idea -- yes, genetics
and cloning hold enormous potential, but I think with the current
knowledge of this subject there should be a moratorium on actual
experiments (especially on human cells) until we learn more of the
background of the whole thing - and especially, until we have some form
of agreement on ethical standards about what we want to achieve and how
far we are willing to go.

(Note: this is not the "we should leave this to god argument" -- simply
because I am agnostic. But somehow I think before we start "playing
god", we should at least get to know whatever we can on a theoretical
level, before we go about practical experiments on it and decide what
should be allowed and what should be off limits... )

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (5, Insightful)

lederhosen (612610) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611572)

>...but I think with the current
>knowledge of this subject...

How can we gain knowledge if we don't do research?

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (0)

beh (4759) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611698)

Ever heard of "theoretical" research?

Strangely, astronomy is a science, though we've never created a supernova of ourselves, or travelled for a lightyear to get a feel for the distance.

I think there is a lot that can simply be learnt by studying and observing and THEN we can start thinking about how to change things.

My father suffered from Multiple Sclerosis; and one of my relatives suffered from Parkinson's -- still, I wouldn't want, just for my own selfish reasons, want to have someone fiddle around with genetics just saying how this might eventually improve treatment of such diseases.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (5, Insightful)

lederhosen (612610) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611849)

I have big problem with people fiddle around with genetics. But you do have to think about what is good and what is bad. I have *no* problem whatsoever with
cloning though I have serious problem with modifying genes that are inherited.

Go ahead and clone cells for cancer treatment, and deseases, but wait with messing with genes that will
be left for all comming generations (at least untill we really know what we are doing.

Sadly, it seams to be the other way around, mix genes of fish with potatoes, modify corn etc, things that *may* cause severe problems in the
future people seams to accept. But when you
*clone* something, everyone screams, think about our children, when it is realy totaly harmless

MOD UP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611979)

I would mod this insightful if I had the points,

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (4, Insightful)

tgibbs (83782) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611859)

Ever heard of "theoretical" research?

Strangely, astronomy is a science, though we've never created a supernova of ourselves, or travelled for a lightyear to get a feel for the distance.

I think there is a lot that can simply be learnt by studying and observing and THEN we can start thinking about how to change things.


We've been studying and observing for decades. The research is really at a point where it is impossible to carry it appreciably further without experimental results to test the theories, which we finally have the technology to do. There's really no reason to imagine that at some future time we'd be in a better position to decide how to do these experiments. At some point, you just have to try it and see if it works.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (1)

johnnyb (4816) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611926)

But first you have to decide the ethical standards for doing the tests, which seems to have been long overlooked.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (4, Insightful)

tgibbs (83782) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612089)

But first you have to decide the ethical standards for doing the tests, which seems to have been long overlooked.

I disagree. People have been thinking about the ethical standards for a long time. All relevant issues have been extensively debated. I haven't heard anybody with anything new to say on the topic for many years. Since there are no plans for creating organisms with a functioning nervous system capable of suffering, the experiments clearly meet established standards of scientific ethics. And the basic manipulations of human embryos in vitro have long been carried out for in vitro fertilization, so we have already decided as a society that this sort of manipulation is ethically acceptable.

Of course there are some people with religious objections to this, just as there are some people with religious objections to eating beef or pork. They will at some point have to decide whether their personal ethics permit them to take advantage of the benefits of this research.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (2, Interesting)

UWC (664779) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611868)

Science is based on observation. With astronomy, there's a limit to our abilities to observe, and we stay at the edge of that, stretching it with probes, new telescopes, etc. With cloning research, there's an increased ability to observe certain processes in what some apparently consider acceptable ways. Do you deny that if we actually could travel interstellar distances, we would? These scientists feel that it's within their ethical limits to be doing the experiments they are doing. Whether that fits with some universal standard of ethics I don't know, but I don't think that most of them are doing this just because they can. They want to learn from it, like the astronomers using revolutionary equipment to gain more knowledge about their own field of study. This isn't an endorsement of the cloning stuff, and I don't know where I would draw the line, either, but I don't think the comparison to astronomy is particularly valid, as astronomy is limited by the means of observation.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611863)

I think you, and germans as a society probably view cloning much differently as we americans, seeing how your continent and nation view genetically modified food.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611980)

How can we gain knowledge if we don't do research?

How can we learn nuclear physics if we don't test an atomic bomb?

To put this other way, there are millions of species in planet earth that we can test cloning and genetic engineering with (even for therapeutic purposes). Why do we have to start with our own species? Remember we're talking about our kin. A human embryo could be tomorrow's doctor, musician, writer...

If we don't care for human embryos now, what makes you think we will always care for other humans later?

This is a very delicate issue, because we're dealing with human life. Is human life invaluable? Or it has a price? When does human life start? When does it end? Are there any exceptions?

I'm more worried about the moral consequences of cloning, than the more tangible experimental failures. Because experiments can be controlled in a lab - but human morals? Once the public accepts something as "not bad" or "normal", there's no turning back.

What will happen next is what worries me. I don't want to see a world where already-born human babies are experimented with.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (-1, Troll)

RailGunner (554645) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612062)

Dittos to the parent poster. I'd also like to add the following:

Where are the freaks, the failed Dolly clones?

What about the freaks, the failed Human clones? Would they be destroyed? Is life so worthless that we can discard it so easily?

Cloning humans is an insanely *bad* idea, I think. And yeah, God's not going to be happy about it.

DR Mengele (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11612072)

The nazi party de-humanized the jewish people, after that it was acceptable to perform all sorts of horrific experiments.

We've already de-humanized the unborn. (Don't get me wrong, I'm all for abortion in cases where the womans consent to intercourse was impaired or they would have real medical problems, anything else is stupid and selfish).

If we de-humanize full clones and experiment on them are we really any different?

Re:DR Mengele (1)

tgibbs (83782) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612116)

If we de-humanize full clones and experiment on them are we really any different?

Nobody is proposing to create full adult clones, or even embryonic clones with a nervous system capable of feeling pain or suffering.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (1)

DakotaK (727197) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611594)

I'd be willing to bet that the U.S. military has already been doing human cloning research for quite some time now.
As far as ethical standards go, there's always going to be people who bitch and complain about almost every aspect, like the old lady across the street that thinks TV is evil.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (4, Interesting)

nuclear305 (674185) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611644)

" I am not sure, whether this is really such a grand idea -- yes, genetics
and cloning hold enormous potential, but I think with the current
knowledge of this subject there should be a moratorium on actual
experiments (especially on human cells) until we learn more of the
background of the whole thing - and especially, until we have some form
of agreement on ethical standards about what we want to achieve and how
far we are willing to go."


Ok, well the most obvious argument is "How do we learn without doing research?" We already know the "theoretical level" ...which is why people want to pursue research to begin with.

That aside, who decides on the ethical standards? Who decides when we've learned enough "background" to proceed with experiments? Historically speaking there is no way...there will always be people that disagree and there will always be those who think we should put something off until we have a better understanding.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (3, Insightful)

Datasage (214357) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611651)

How do we know if a thoery is valid if we are not allowed to test it? Expirments are a part of the scientifc process, without them, all your theories are just hypothesis.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611852)

...at first we might want to ESTABLISH some more theories about it?

Especially, since we're playing around with the building blocks of life, shouldn't we at first start by establishing binding ethical guidelines?

What happens, if we really allow human cloning - a deliberate act to bring some specific set of DNA to life, and that being commits a crime - who's ultimately responsible? Of course, the being - but what about the person designing THAT particular DNA strand?

(Interesting, btw. to see how the original post - a request for ethical guidelines originally got modded "Flamebait"... Have we reached a state where ethics are considered a waste of time?)

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (1)

prodangle (552537) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611683)

with the current knowledge of this subject there should be a moratorium on actual experiments (especially on human cells) until we learn more of the background of the whole thing

The best way to improve our current knowledge is to continue with these experiments, otherwise we are just sitting in limbo.

until we have some form of agreement on ethical standards about what we want to achieve and how far we are willing to go.

Surely the terms of the government granted license are an agreement on the ethical standards to be met. According to the article "There will be no reproductive cloning [...] with eggs not being allowed to grow beyond 14 days and the remaining cells destroyed."

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (1)

kevinx (790831) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611685)

So basically what you are saying is that you don't have faith in the british gov to take precautions and develop ethical standards? Do you know if they haven't done so already? I'm not trying to be a troll or anything. I see your point, but I'm not entirely sure that it hasn't already been addressed in some type of fashion.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (1)

UWC (664779) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611689)

I agree with some of your sentiment, but without knowing much of the established knowledge base, I'm not sure how practical or realistic your advice is. How far are we able to go at a theoretical level before we're just treading water? Are we there already? How far are these researchers planning to go? From the sound of it, I doubt they'll be trying to clone a human, though even that might depend on one's definition of "human," I suppose. How much can be learned from non-human cloning experiments? Have we reached a barrier there, too? And I agree that some form of ethical standards would be a good idea, but who would be the arbiter of such a code? Would there be some international cloning council that would decide it, and who would appoint them or enforce their decrees?

This feels, to some degree, like a lot of the legal things going on with digital rights. It's something that people haven't really had to think about until now, so they really don't know where they stand, and may or may not even understand what's going on, but they feel that some kind of decision needs to be made.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (1)

ckemp.org (667117) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611796)

It's something that people haven't really had to think about until now, so they really don't know where they stand, and may or may not even understand what's going on, but they feel that some kind of decision needs to be made. You're absolutely right. Bioethics as a school of thought has only been around for one hundred years or so, and it has not come close to catching up with the advances of science. Certain "celebrity" issues like Dolly pop up now and then and grab the public's attention, but there is no system set up to handle these serious ethical questions. Before they can properly be answered, we need to have a public educated in the basics and law systems flexible enough to catch up.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (1)

Swamii (594522) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611728)

Nah. Moratoriums, conferences, public "should we or shouldn't we" questions like these seem to do little to promote science.

I'm software developer. When I'm unfamiliar with a subject, I tend to try things out, discover how they work, then get a basic working example built from scratch. To me, at least, I find this approach much more suitable then asking around, having other people tell me what is the best way, searching the web, and so on.

Are embryonic sciences that much different; do scientists really need to hear what other people have to say before poking around, discovering how it works, researching it, get a basic example working?

(Note: I am not a left wing amoralist by any means. On the contrary, I am a Bush supporter and a proud believer in Christ. So I, too, and saying this without regard to the "should we play god" argument; as far as I'm concerned, we aren't playing god until we can create life from scratch rather than manipulate or duplicate.)

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11612020)

Note: I am not a left wing amoralist by any means.

Does the right-wing really believe the left-wing is "amoral"? Jeez, that must make voting easy: a vote against Bush is a vote for evil. No grounding in reality necessary.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (2, Insightful)

lumpenprole (114780) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611761)

I don't know. Why don't you ask those people with motor neuron disease he's trying to find a treatment for how they feel about the ethical implications.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611775)

Try telling that to people who suffer from Alzheimers or are paralyzed in some way, who believe this is the means to their recovery as well as the plethora of others suffering from a similar affliction.

The whole 'wait until we figure out if it's moral or where to draw the line' thing is bullshit. It's just an excuse for religious hardliners to enforce their outdated beliefs on people and prevent advancements that would help thousands.

And as for the "playing god" bit, that's bullshit as well. Assuming there is an all-knowing, all-powerful god who has power that we could never hope to attain, how is this playing god if we, the lowly human race, can do it? Whether you are religious or not, stop using that cliche.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (1)

blueZhift (652272) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611837)

Honestly, I'm not sure there is an ethical way to do human cloning research that everyone will agree upon. The main problem is that all scientific research entails failure upon failure. This is unavoidable and when coupled with human elements (or animals for that matter), the issue of suffering enters the picture. Now onto this overlay your favorite metaphysical viewpoint and you've got a real puzzle to work out.

These aren't always issues in the earliest stages of cloning research, but even here, if you start talking about working with human embryos for example, a firestorm begins. Even if said embryos were not created for the sole purpose of research, the ethical challenge is inescapable. Use your own vocabulary, but I'd say the karmic burden is very high for those who engage in such research. I'm not saying that this research should not be done, but I think that those who do it should act with the utmost respect and reverence for life which is probably what most in the life sciences do anyway.

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (3, Insightful)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611840)

ethical standards about what we want to achieve and how far we are willing to go

It is ethical to engage in research which may heal people suffering from horrible diseases. It is unethical to throw up roadblocks to such research based on vague fears about Things Man Was Not Meant To Know.

Any questions?

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611948)

Who gave U teh wright to play gOD ???/?

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (1)

anagama (611277) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612120)


Very succinct, very correct. People complain that a few cells devoid of sentience may suffer and so we have to put everything on hold? What about the suffering of untold millions of fully sentient humans? If suffering is to be the rallying point for the anti-research crowd, it should be subject to this test: if research-caused-suffering is less than suffering-alleviated-by-research, then do the research.

I can only think of two concerns (1)

the_skywise (189793) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611923)

That somehow these embryos are grown beyond their cellular stage into an actual fetus or beyond... and then cut up for testing. (Hey, it's just a clone, it doesn't feel nuthin...) But I don't see this happening here.

Second that this research ends up developing some sort of "clone virus". (IE We engineer enhanced immune systems for cancer. The antibodies are so good that they go airborne and start attacking other humans who can't defend the attack unless they too have the enhanced systems... I think this was a Star Trek: Next Gen episode too). That's possible, but not very probable.

Yeah, there's always the chance that we'll unleash bio-armageddon upon our species. But the military has had that power for decades now and we haven't blown ourselves up... yet...

Re:Is this a good idea AT THIS TIME? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11612044)

QUIT moding parent down because you don't like what he is saying, I despise people like him but this is not flaimbait. He wrote this to express his opinion not to piss people of. just look at his previous posts if you don't believe me

Clone us all (1)

Bad Move (774329) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611510)

again and again

welcome (5, Funny)

kevinx (790831) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611530)

I certainly welcome our new cloned human overlords..
as long as they all look like the olsen twins.

Re:welcome (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611688)

I still keep thinking about full house when I see them..

and that just doesnt feel right.

Re:welcome (2, Funny)

Jakhel (808204) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611894)

how rude

Can't we settle for a happy medium here? (1)

Rooked_One (591287) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611847)

maybe the Coors twins perhaps? I'm of the age where the olsen twins (anorexic or not) still look like jailbait.

Olsen Twins? (1)

game kid (805301) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612093)

First of all they're not the Olsen Twins, they're now the Olsens [olsen-twins.org] you insensitive clod!

Seriously, they should really look like...just check my sig. I won't change it anytime soon. I hope.

Thank you Bush! (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611562)

For driving medical research overseas! Boy, I'm sure glad this is being done in Britain instead of in the good ol' USA, where we don't condone any science that doesn't make creationism a central tenet!

Re:Thank you Bush! (1)

stupidfoo (836212) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611590)

Michael Sims, is that you?

Re:Thank you Bush! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611665)

Nope. I'm his clone.

Re:Thank you Bush! (5, Insightful)

TheMeuge (645043) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611677)

As much as the parent can be considered a troll, he/she is right. The pressure of religious ethics of the right wing Christians, along with this administration's spite towards science, will result in rapid elimination of the slim lead that the US has been maintaining in medical and basic research.

Re:Thank you Bush! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611731)

That's the free market at work.

Re:Thank you Bush! (1)

sirwnstn (848727) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611993)

Ummm... this is NOT an example of doctors/researcher going overseas to play with cloning. This guy was the one who cloned the sheep, Dolly. I commend him for trying to find a cure for this neurological disease, but not his methods.

I'm still of the persuasion that in the end, cloning = slavery.

Re:Thank you Bush! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611750)

Don't worry...we can always rely on our skilled manufacturing wor....oh. Umm..what is it we do better than everyone else again?

What the US does well is... (2, Funny)

doublem (118724) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611806)

We're better at starting wars we can't finish.

And condemning things to Hell.

Oh! And getting fat. We have more fat than the rest of the world combined.

Re:What the US does well is... (1)

Swamii (594522) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611895)

Don't forget we pollute the air more than any other country, and output more physical garbage than most nations combined.

It's sad (being a US citizen myself) but true.

Re:Thank you Bush! (1)

carl@mindless.com (42932) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611851)

risque half time sho.... Oh, right we don't even do entertainment better anymore.

Re:Thank you Bush! (1)

AndroidCat (229562) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612006)

That leaves pizza deliveration then.

Re:Thank you Bush! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11612042)

good ol'USA? You know britain is older than the USA?

Clones in the news again? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611563)

Isn't this story a dupe?

Re:Clones in the news again? (1)

de1orean (851146) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611903)

and mod this redundant while you're at it.

I wish they'd clone Steve Ballmer. (-1, Offtopic)

Tibor the Hun (143056) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611581)

I'd dress him up in a monkey suit and have him dance around the house.

I know this is offtopic, but wouldn't it be cool if everyone had a little Ballmer to dance around for them?

Re:I wish they'd clone Steve Ballmer. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611593)

I'd clone your mom and then fuck the shit out of her.

Re:I wish they'd clone Steve Ballmer. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611648)

Who would be more likely to throw their feces at you: Steve Ballmer or a real monkey? On the other hand, a monkey would be much, much cuter! What's a better pick up line: "Hey baby, wanna come back to my place and see my monkey?" or "Hey baby, wanna come back to my place and see my Ballmer?" Even with the fece throwing, I think you're better off with a real monkey...

Re:I wish they'd clone Steve Ballmer. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611776)

Ballmer. He already does it, although his feces is called windows.

Re:I wish they'd clone Steve Ballmer. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611915)

Steve Ballmer is crazy! That man has not got the slightest grip on reality.

So..... (4, Insightful)

Meostro (788797) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611588)

The license has a duration of one year and is the second of its kind given by Britain, the first country to officially sanction human cloning research.

So who got the first one?

Re:So..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611592)

Ringo Star.

Re:So..... (5, Funny)

Dr Caleb (121505) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611632)

So who got the first one?

Some guy who looks just like him.

Woah (1)

kypper (446750) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611748)

Deja Vu.

Re:So..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611733)

The first license went to the university of newcastle upon tyne.

Re:So..... (5, Informative)

jacob_jackson (857575) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611798)

Last August, a team of scientists from Newcastle University in northern England was granted a license to clone human embryos to develop new treatments for diabetes and degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's (http://www.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=hea lthNews&storyID=7569803&pageNumber=1)

Re:So..... (1)

Rollie Hawk (831376) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612117)

They cut out part of the original article [searchthefreakingweb.com] .

Clone rights (5, Funny)

Spoonito (849497) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611595)

Clones are people two.

10 print "clones are people" $d
20 let $d = pun
30 gosub hilarity

sure whatever (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611612)

just cure my fucking diabetes already.

Re:sure whatever (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611684)

Amen! I don't care how many human embryos get destroyed, I'm tired of taking this damn medication!

Re:sure whatever (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611982)

i dont take medication, i have type 2
but im fucking sick of watching my blood sugar and exercising and watching my diet.

i want to fucking drink regular soda again.
i want to fucking eat a krispy kreme donut for the first time in my life
but most of all
I WANT TO FUCKING GO BACK TO THE LIFE I HAD BEFORE, WHICH WAS SITTING IN FRONT OF THE COMPUTER ALL DAY AND NOT DOING A DAMN THING WHILE I EAT WHATEVER THE FUCK I WANT

is that too much to ask? hurry up and find a fucking cure damnit.

should I write a novel? (0, Offtopic)

CrazyJim1 (809850) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611613)

I was thinking of making a novel called Human Farm In it, they clone people to do brain transplants. The first batch doesn't have muscle development because they grew them without true lifelike interactions. This spawns a sicklike monster of a person who had to be emergency transplanted to save their life. The next batch is grown up with the help of a nanny in a secure environment. Later the nanny learns of the sick proceedure, so the third batch she trains them to be sick martial arts trainers who are highly moral, also in the third batch, they decide to transplant the young ones into the old bodies so they can get some extra work out of them. One of the young ones gets transplanted to an old person before the plot to rebel happens. So later the old guy has to kill his young self to prevent something serious from happening, forever dooming himself to the old body. Lots of plot twists and a demonization of old people trying to extend their life through use of young people's lives. Properly written it could be good, but I doubt my writing skills, and I don't know if I want to pollute the culture with some of my warped ideas.

Re:should I write a novel? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611658)

I too doubt your writing skills. Perhaps a nice mall job would be in order.

So tell me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611722)

Where did you get the name "Crazy Jim"? Come up with it by yourself, or is that what the psychiatrists refer to you as?

Re:So tell me... (1)

darth_MALL (657218) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611801)

T-Bone was taken.
I know, I know. The jerk store called...

Re:should I write a novel? (1)

Thud457 (234763) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611725)

Just stick to the standard horror genre story with a twist -- healthy protagonist finds out on his 18th birtday that he's to be the donor for his older self.

Re:should I write a novel? (1)

theGreater (596196) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611899)

I seem to recall reading a very similar story in the sciFi channel archives (http://www.scifi.com/scifiction/archive.html).

The story was actually about "organ drafting" wherein the older politicians legislated themselves new organs as necessary from prime young candidates. A neat crossover between cloning, the draft, and Social Security.

-theGreater.

Re:should I write a novel? (2, Funny)

eyeye (653962) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611861)

are you a clone of CrazyJim0 ?

Re:should I write a novel? (2, Informative)

doublem (118724) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611891)

Been Done [imdb.com]

Of course, the movie is only intersting if you see the MST3K version.

License to copy (2, Funny)

saddino (183491) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611642)

As a matter of fact, he is now a licensed human cloner.

Something tells me he wouldn't have a problem creating a fake ID if he really needed one.

Re:License to copy (1)

AndroidCat (229562) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611813)

Or just wear a mask as the Clone Arranger, leaving behind a silver bullet against disease...

Certainty (1)

ckemp.org (667117) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611690)

How certain can they be that these embryos, grown to possess the characteristic genome of an MND victim, will effectively emulate the conditions they need? Dolly, in many respects, raised questions over how clones react to their existence: she died prematurely as if she had aged too fast. Who's to say that these embryos don't possess unknown characteristics simply as a function of being cloned?

Re:Certainty (1)

Zordok (90071) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611778)

That's why it's important that doctors are legally allowed to do this kind of research; to answer these kinds of questions.

Re:Certainty (1)

tgibbs (83782) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611959)

How certain can they be that these embryos, grown to possess the characteristic genome of an MND victim, will effectively emulate the conditions they need? Dolly, in many respects, raised questions over how clones react to their existence: she died prematurely as if she had aged too fast. Who's to say that these embryos don't possess unknown characteristics simply as a function of being cloned?

One cannot be sure until one does the experiment. but there are plenty of things that can be tested to determine whether the model of MND is a good one. And if they do possess "unknown characteristics," that make them different, that will provide important information about epigenetic factors that are relevant to MND.

Re:Certainty (5, Informative)

jackelfish (831732) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611998)

They are not creating embryos, they are attempting to create pluripotent cells, from skin cells, in an attempt to replace malfunctioning neurons. There is not an entire organism involved here as they are not using gametes (eggs or sperm) in these experiments. This is where the term "cloning" becomes confused, in that many people think it always refers to the duplication of a whole organism (such as Dolly) where it simply means to insert foreign DNA into a cell.

Re:Certainty (2, Informative)

jackelfish (831732) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612122)

Let me correct myself. It seems that in this case they will be actually inserting the DNA into an unfertilized egg in an attempt to study the development of the disease. That said, many of these diseases also have an autoimmune aspect that can be triggered later on in development and as with any science there are numerous factors that can not be controlled for. Therefore we have to take the results at face value and not read too much into them, as is quite often the case.

License (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611691)

Heh. So the whole "ethical issues!" and "scary frankenstein stuff!" and "do we have the right to play god?!" stuff was really just a disguise for: how can we tax this?

Not human cloning. (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611696)

He has a license to clone human embreyos, not clone humans which would be an entirely different matter. The purpose being so he/his team can study diseases which effect motor neurons, by growing them from cloned embreyos using the material from a sufferor of motor neuron disease.

Re:Not human cloning. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11611827)

so human embryos do not grow to become humans?

Are you living on this planet or another one?

Oh noooo!!! (2, Funny)

ryanvm (247662) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611717)

Oh crap! This is England's first step in building a clone army to conquer the world. I've had visions of this army and their teeth look like this [vampfangs.com] .

Re:Oh noooo!!! (1)

Sesostris III (730910) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611969)

Er, Scotland's first step!

Sesostris III

Genetic material question (1)

AndroidCat (229562) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611753)

Along with fellow applicant Professor Christopher Shaw, of the Department of Neurology, Institute of Psychiatry, at Kings College, London, Prof Wilmut now plans to take the DNA from the skin or blood of a person with motor neurone disease and implant it into a human egg from which the genetic material has been removed.
Won't the egg will have to retain the mitochondrial DNA? (Factory sub-cells) Aren't some of the motor neurone diseases connected with that?

Re:Genetic material question (5, Insightful)

InternationalCow (681980) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611947)

The egg contains mitochondria, and, indeed, some motor neuron diseases are indirectly linked to mitochondrial dysfunction. If bad mitochondria cause the disease, problem solved, as the mitochondria are not from the person with MND. However, most motor neuron diseases that we know of and are connected to mitochondrial dysfunction are actually caused by problems in nuclear genes - case in point being amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (aka Lou Gehrig's disease), which is related to mutations in superoxide dismutase. The dysfunctioning of this protein in turn affects mitochondrial function leading to increased apoptosis, etc.. Apart from that, tackling degenerative disease using stem cells is probably not going to work in many cases - many of those diseases may not be caused by cell-autonomous processes, which means that whatever is killing the motor neurons is going to kill the stem cells as well. Stem cells may however be very useful for repopulating purposes, if we can get them to differentiate in the right way in the right place.

I'm against cloning (1, Funny)

flyingsquid (813711) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611862)

I for one am against cloning. Imagine what would happen if it resulted in something like "Attack of the Clones" being played out all over the world.

(Shudder). Just imagine the horror: a world in the grips of stale dialogue, bad acting, the lack of real suspense or characters you can care about...

copyright issues? (5, Funny)

de1orean (851146) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611877)

the RIAA is watching these developments closely.

You guys think way too small.. (1)

AHarrison (778175) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611916)

Just think, if we can get some liscenced geeks into the cloning scene, we can produce an army.

It was as if a thousand jocks cried out in terror, and then were suddenly silenced.

so smart and yet so stupid. (0, Troll)

lasermike026 (528051) | more than 9 years ago | (#11611950)

Cloning humans... this is as dumb as nuclear war and George W. Bush.

Cloning Lic. seems like a good compromise (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11612008)

between[a] "if you or your institution have the money, anything goes" which hasn't happened yet because [1] its still damn hard to do anything in cloning and [2] if some body with money like Gates and mind like Jacko wants himself copied to live forever, don't you suppose that would get secrecy that would make NSA look like a bunch of blabbermouths?
and [b] "God told me and all of my friends that could find a polling booth that every sperm is sacred and science should be put to good uses like weapons research...don't you touch a f**king embryo or we'll kill you." which HAS happened since separation of church and state has broken down pretty badly in the country that first implemented the concept.

Wilmut. Ian Wilmut. (1)

Garg (35772) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612015)

License to clone.

Garg

OMG Chill (0, Troll)

RoTCarnage (857509) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612075)

Why do people think that some one is going to go spend BILLIONS to create an army of human clones? Get real, no one is going to spend the money so I don't see how the research could possibly be a threat.

old news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11612085)

what's the big deal!?

http://www.clonaid.com/news.php [clonaid.com]

This is great news. (1)

Marthisdil (606679) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612087)

I for one aren't too stuck on the notion that we would create humans just for harvesting organs....

Heck, if we can somehow just grow a specific organ to replace a bad one, even better.

Hopefully they will find great successes, and we can smack some of those stuck on the idea that we shouldn't be "playing god".

Re:This is great news. (0, Troll)

RoTCarnage (857509) | more than 9 years ago | (#11612105)

The idea is to clone organs and my mother in law wouldn't be dead had the regious STFU and let things progress. My cloning strike down diabeties and a MYRIAD of other diseases.
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