Comprehensive coverage

Goodbye Dolly, Hello Bill Gates 13

The British Ministry of Health's announcement last week that it recommends allowing the cloning of human embryos provoked panicked reactions. Is this progress that cannot be denied or misuse of the successes of nature research? Are we really now facing a brave new world in which those with ability will reproduce themselves and thus gain a living

By Ayelet Baram, Ha'ir

The first association that comes to mind when talking about human replication is
of mad scientists to clone an army of murderous slaves. The second is
Immortality. Both are unrelated to the uproar created by Prof. Liam's announcement
Donlandson, Director General of the British Ministry of Health, who recommended last week
Allow the cloning (duplication of a whole organism) of human embryos for purposes
In the scientific community it is often said that science has no moral tone, that science does not
Can be good or bad, the way you use it makes it so. regarding
The duplicate army of mad scientists is usually answered by statesmen
Crazy people, crazy clerics and crazy drivers, but no scientists
Crazy, at least not outside the movie theater. A more important question is whether
Duplication of humans is a successful way to spread evil in the world. even if in the future
The technique to duplicate an entire person will be possible and effective (on the way to Dolly the sheep
276 attempts failed), will still need surrogates to agree to give birth to
The children and a place to raise them until they become mature killers.

Even the biggest believer in the power of genetics knows that environment,
Education and life circumstances will make genetically identical people different in character
and in their behavior. As duplicating good people for the sake of spreading the good in the world seems
As a very unsafe technique, so the increase of evil in the world will continue
probably done in natural ways.
For the same reasons we cannot become immortal by reproduction. As long as the
It will not be possible to transfer the experience, memories, habits and character
that formed over the years, or in short the brain, of our young character, he
There will remain our twin brother: outwardly very similar, but still human
When you remove the fears, you are left with the basic problematic in use
in a cluster of cells that could have turned into a human being if it had been implanted in the womb,
And with the question of how to act, which only two years ago was considered an absolute taboo, there is
Today is an excellent chance to become an indispensable medical treatment.
Prof. Michel Rebel from the Weizmann Institute of Science, chairman of the national committee
for biotechnology, a member of the Bioethical Commission of UNESCO (an organization of
the United Nations that deals with education, science and culture) and winner of the Israel Prize last year for
His research to find a cure for multiple sclerosis, trying to explain how it happened,
And why is it good? Prof. Rebel, born in 1938, is a Holocaust survivor, Jewish
A believer and scientist with clear and decisive opinions. When the British want to permit
Using cloned human embryos for research, what are they thinking of doing
with them?
"The British are talking about creating embryos that will develop in a Petri dish for a long time
A week, maximum ten days, to learn how to remove cells from them
for transplants Cells of young embryos can develop into all kinds of tissues,
And cells that in an adult do not divide anymore, such as nerve cells, yet
shared with them. After receiving the necessary tissue, cells can be transplanted
Muscle for a person whose heart has been damaged by a heart attack, nerve cells in Parkinson's patients and cells
Liver in cirrhotic patients and they will merge with the existing tissue and behave like cells
Normal for everything."
The creation of the embryos will be done in a similar way to the one used to clone Dolly the sheep:
You take a cell of an adult person and insert its nucleus, which contains the substance
Hereditary, into a donor egg, instead of its original nucleus.
Pass an electric current through the egg to connect them. The egg miscalculates
that it has been violated and is beginning to divide. The cells multiply and differentiate into tissues
Different, as happens in every fetus. If at this stage the fetus is implanted in the uterus
&#;8211 He will become a person genetically identical to the nuclear donor. If,
And that's what the British want to do, push the embryo growing in the petri dish
In a certain developmental direction, it will be possible to receive cells for transplantation from the patient's body
will not reject. The patient himself contributes the DNA from which the embryo is created
who will donate the cells for transplantation. Since these are identical cells, the system
The patient's immune system will not attack the implant.
In January '99, a group of researchers announced that they had failed in their attempt to clone
monkeys We actually do not know if this method can be used to
to clone human embryos.
"True, we don't know if the nuclear transfer method can even give
the initial development of the fetus, which is of course a much bigger task
Simpler than trying to give birth to a cloned human. One of the goals of the proposal
English is to enable research that will clarify this question."
Do you think this is technically possible?
“Yeah, I just don't know how long it will take. I don't think there is a barrier
Impassable between primates (man and great apes) and other mammals. Must
Just find the right conditions. There were also many in mouse cloning
setbacks along the way. Even considering the best statistics
In mice, only about five percent of the attempts end up giving birth to a mouse.
This is one of the reasons why we don't talk about the birth of cloned humans today
&#;8211 This would require so many attempts (each attempt requires,
Of course, a surrogate mother - A.B.), so the matter was neither worthwhile nor immoral
Even if the goal is good. If the English Parliament accepts the proposal, it will be possible
Learn more about the initial development stages of embryos and promote the
The research.”
This research has medical applications. It is not done just to know more
On the first step and burying this news in the university library.
"Right. The research is done in order to then progress to the second and third stages until it is
A method of reproduction (I don't like the word reproduction), which can answer problems
Medical conditions such as severe infertility. Also for the initial research, which is being talked about
The English have a clear medical goal: creating implants that will not be rejected. in all
case they point out that this method should only be used when there is no treatment

It is also possible to create something similar to an organ or we are limited only to cells
"We still can't even think about creating an organ like a heart or
kidney. We can think of a patch of heart muscle cells that will merge with
The damaged heart muscle. have already succeeded in obtaining clean cultures of muscle cells
and sadness.”
In the near term it seems that the creation of whole organs will require the creation of people
intact, and making a golem for spare purposes only sounds too horrible an idea for me
discuss it. Until a technique is developed to create an entire organ in a plate we will have to make do
in tissue cells only. But tests done on Dolly, the first mammal to be cloned
From a cell of an adult creature, it was shown that her cells were older than her age. at the ends
Chromosomes have wide margins called telomeres, which shorten with each
division of the cell. Because Dolly's original cell was already a mature cell,
The margins of the chromosomes were narrower than in a fertilized egg
normal The shortening of chromosome margins is considered one of the causes of aging.
"I don't think we know enough to make a position on this,"
Rebel says.
"The story of the telomeres in Dolly is worrying, but on the other hand, in animals there are none
They have the ability to extend the ends of the chromosome, there is no defect in the first generation or
The second. Sometimes in the third generation the cells are damaged by rapid aging, so no
It is necessary that the issue of telomeres limit us, because we are only talking about a generation
A mature cell has already accumulated mutations during its lifetime. the embryonic cells
that develop from it will not be at a higher risk of getting cancer?
"It really should worry us more. Although to this day I have not read any
A place reported the development of a tumor in animals cloned from adult cells, but
On the other hand, they didn't wait years to publish the article, so that's definitely a concern
to be thought about. In any medical treatment, the odds must be weighed against
the risks. A person who has had a heart attack, and whose damaged heart can be patched
In new cells, may take on the higher risk of getting sick
in cancer All treatments that suppress the immune system that are given, for example,
To prevent transplant rejection, are known to promote cancer, and are still given
them because the other options are worse."
Obviously, such treatment would not be given to healthy people.
"It is very difficult to predict what will happen, so research is needed. It might have fit
These will die too soon because they originate in older tissue or they will originate
to cancerous development. We may not be able to produce enough cells
for a transplant and it will turn out that it was an illusion. But considering the research that has already been done
In animals I think the problems are less medical and more moral.
"You have to differentiate between two issues that involve one. The first question is
If it is even allowed to use human embryos for research, like, for example, fetuses
Surplus donated by couples undergoing IVF. After all, always
Fertilization treatments produce more embryos than necessary, and only some of them
put into the uterus. The second question is whether it is permissible to use human embryos
have undergone replication. There is still no consolidated opinion in Israel, nor is there a state committee
For bioethics that can determine a position on behalf of the state, and I strongly support it
in the establishment of such a committee. What there is
He is the law that initiated Mirom holidays against genetic interference. The law prohibits procreation
of a cloned person - I think it is forbidden in every country in the world - and forbids
Genetic change in gametes, because genetic intervention in gametes changes the
The descendants in future generations."
"According to the law, a committee that doesn't really exist should be established, whose job it is to report to the minister
Health, when there is a minister of health, about the state of research in the world and to recommend if there is any
A reason to change the law or allow certain genetic interventions.
The bans were set for five years, of which almost two years have already passed, and they
Do not include a ban on tissue transplantation. Since there is no law against it,
I suppose that after the English start the research, scientists will also join it
in the country." Israeli law is very permissive while in Europe there is an outcry
The idea of ​​using embryonic cells.
"The status of the fetus in Israel, to the extent that it is influenced by Jewish culture,
Very different from that in Catholic countries," says Rebel, who defines himself
as modern orthodoxy. "According to the halachic concept, when the fetus is still
In a test tube and not yet implanted in the womb, he is considered a person only if the parents want it
give birth to him Catholics consider him a man from the moment the sperm fertilizes the egg,
And killing him is considered murder in their eyes. This explains why the Church forbids
on in vitro fertilization. "
"We also see this in relation to abortions: in Judaism, the mother of the fetus endangers my life
The mother, and this also includes her mental life, is allowed to abort. Also for the mother
Carrying a fetus with a severe genetic defect is allowed to abort. According to the Holy See
Abortion is absolutely forbidden and it doesn't matter how dangerous it is for the mother. So maybe a hack
The current way is done in England, which is not Catholic. "
"According to Judaism, the fetus is not considered to have been created until forty days from the beginning
The pregnancy. Rabbis I spoke with did not see a problem in using an embryo for salvation
Haim. Obviously, the gray area of ​​the study is problematic, but it can be included
It is also within the scope of the effort to save lives. I'm not saying just because there is
Benefit at the end of the road is allowed to follow - the fetus has the potential to become a person
And it is not trivial at all to use it and stop its existence - but the way
It is not anti-moral if there are embryos that there is no intention to give birth anyway
"But is it allowed to produce an embryo for the purpose of research? There is a very big moral difference
Between an embryo created for fertilization purposes and in the end they decided not to use it and between
A pre-created embryo for the purpose of research. I would answer that it is not allowed, that it is not
It is ethical to produce embryos for research. This is also the position of the International Committee
For UNESCO bioethics.
"The second moral question is whether to allow duplication at all due to danger
the slippery slope. When you enable the first step, are you actually unlocking
the door and bringing closer the moment when a cloned person will be born? I think no
It is possible to ban in advance an entire area of ​​science, which could have uses
very important medical, without checking it at all. I learned from Prof. Asa
Kosher that the concept of the slippery slope is not absolute. if you put a foot
Downhill doesn't mean you can't stop later. Already today there is
Non-replicative medical uses for the nuclear transfer technique. In case of
A woman with mitochondrial diseases (organelles in the cell that have little substance
Hereditary - AB) The doctor can take the nucleus from her egg
and to implant it in the egg of a donor, whose mitochondria are fine, instead
its original core. It's not replication, because you still need to fertilize a cell
seed so that a child will be born. It is possible to take a nucleus from a woman's egg
adult and insert her into the egg of a young woman so that she can
give birth at an older age. Humanity must not be denied the right to enjoy
from the progress of science.
"Beyond that, a very strange situation has arisen in Israel. No instantiation, no
Philosophical and not rabbinical, which opposes duplication, compared to the situation in Europe - ibid
It's kind of like talking about the devil. On the day the method will work, if at all, the application
Her main goal will be to help an infertile couple give birth to a child without needing to
for sperm or egg donation outside of marriage. The donation outside of marriage
poses a very difficult problem for Jewish law due to the danger that children of the same
An anonymous donor, who grew up in different families - will get married and bring discovery
Chastity The rabbis are very afraid of this and the duplication solution seems better to them,
Because they know who the father is."
Does it seem healthy to you, to grow yourself?
"The child will be like a twin brother to the donor, who was born many years after him. Even
They will not see that he resembles much more than a normal offspring, because of the age difference. they
will be less similar than two identical twins, because the environment and time in which they grew up
and shaped differently.
"All these stories about identical twins who grew up in different families and today
They are both accountants who married a red-haired woman named Mary. They are not
serious Scientific tests done on identical twins raised in families
Different arts showed a fifty percent correlation between them. It's not at all
A little, but it's not one hundred percent. That's why I don't believe if today there were
Duplicating Einstein or Hitler, one could get their likenesses.
Genetics does not determine everything.
Homo sapiens evolved in the last hundreds of thousands of years without genetic change
at all. Knowledge, culture, tradition - this is what we mean when we talk about
But the world is revolting against the idea. UNESCO calls for respecting the uniqueness
and the difference in everyone and sees duplication as an injury to human dignity.
"It's true if you duplicate people wholesale, not if you do it
as a fertility treatment. I am genetically anti-deterministic. I believe
that each person has the possibility of differences in character, intellect and behavior, as between
two identical twins. The Gemara said that those born under the sign of Mars love
Blood, but this is only preparation: he can decide to become a surgeon and he can
to be a murderer too. He can be a sap or work in an Italian restaurant. There is a measure
Freedom for man. Genetically identical people can have similar traits, but
That doesn't mean they will use them in a similar way."
Some treat cloning as a way to resurrect a loved one.
"A couple who lost a child and thinks that it is possible to have an identical child is wrong. even if there is
Similarity on the outside, it will not be the same on the inside. Prof. Asa Kosher says
that he would use this method to resurrect his fallen son. me too
I lost a child, but I wouldn't do that. The distress is even greater
Because there will be no identity for a person who has already accumulated history and experiences - he is only
will look like him. Immortality cannot be achieved by genetics.
"There are three principles that I believe, if we respect them, we will stay within the bounds of morality.
The first principle is that the methods of reproduction and reproduction shall be used only for the purposes
medically, when there is no other solution. A doctor must not treat a person who is not there
sick or offer him their things we don't need, and I don't think you transplanted
Hair is a medical cause. The second principle is that each individual case should
to be reviewed by a committee or some mechanism, and not to be determined by laws
sweeping Maimonides already said that everyone is an exception. the principle
The third is that every decision will be made by the individual and not dictated by me
the company The company has no right to intervene and decide what the correct genome is. in the moment
that society intervenes in such issues there are attempts to improve the sex and the race.
We know that this was the cornerstone of the Nazi race theory."
You can also look at it the other way around: the company can decide which ones
Cases are allowed to be dropped in a more responsible and reasonable manner than the individual. not hard
imagine a snobbish and wealthy group aborting less intelligent babies,
Only because she can afford it.
"Society can decide that it does not approve abortion in cases A, B and C,
But surely she cannot force an abortion. Genetic counseling is
The only way the company is allowed to intervene. If a mother insists on an abortion because
A slight deformity, the genetic counselor will explain to her that there is no reason to panic. Obviously there is here
A moral problem that does not exist in severe defects. Everyone agrees that it should be dropped
In the case of Ty Sachs, in other diseases eighty percent agree and in cases
others only two percent. But for the second percent, it's really terrible
Like Ty Zacks. I don't think society should interfere. I have it
Prof. Rebel's extreme views regarding the prohibition of company intervention
The issues between a person and his chromosomes can perhaps be better understood from the background
His personal history. Revel lived through the Holocaust as a child who hid with his family
in the mountains of southern France, and it seems that today he prefers any alternative to me
An attempt at institutionalized eugenics (improvement of the human race). "In '94 they banned
In France about in vitro fertilization from a dead man's sperm," Rebel recalled. "husband of
A woman who was in treatment, and already had embryos ready, died in an accident
ways. She went from court to court, but was forbidden to use
in fetuses on the grounds that France does not produce orphans. It seems to me like
Scandal: Not only is her husband dead, she can't give birth to the babies either
which they started doing. It just shows what happens when society gets involved."
The discussion about human reproduction is somewhat reminiscent of the discussion about the integrity of Jerusalem.
For years, the relevant authorities kept saying that there was no chance
That enlightened countries would allow such research, that it is an absolute taboo and that humans
They are off limits for researchers. Against them were some prophets of wrath who claimed
that once the technology is accessible, it will be impossible to stop science.
As it stands now, the prophets of wrath were right.
"Science can always be stopped," Rebel says. "The question is if you want to do it
It. It is not that the scientists will continue the research without permission. I think
That the British committee's recommendations be accepted in Parliament because there is none here
From the coup, they are not talking about duplicating humans, they just overcame a species
of a psychological barrier."
But you do talk about duplicating humans.
"I think a day will come and they will continue to the next level. After years of research
And experience, when they see that the embryos are developing nicely in their first days, they will know
How to proceed from there. This is the nature of progress, not because of the mad scientists
They will do anything." *

Goodbye Dolly, Hello Bill Gates 13 Part II Without ups there are also no downs

"In the future, we are expected to disillusionment from the primal fear", assesses Prof. Amos Shapira, from the Department of Law and Biomedical Ethics. "Our ability to understand that not everything is black or white will allow us to move forward"
By Ayelet Baram, Ha'ir

The law to ban genetic intervention, initiated by MK Hagai Mirom, was accepted by the Knesset at the end of December '98 following the uproar caused by the duplication of Dolly the sheep. "The law prohibits two types of intervention," says Prof. Amos Shapira, member of the Chair of Law and Biomedical Ethics at Tel Aviv University and a member of the Helsinki Higher Committee for Medical Experiments on Humans.
"During the validity of the law, which is five years, it is forbidden to interfere with human cells in order to create a whole person. The question is what is a complete person. I interpret it as one who is born: a person, as opposed to a fetus.
The technology for cloning human embryos, therefore, is not prohibited according to this section. The second prohibition states that it is forbidden to cause the creation of a person by using reproductive cells (sperm or egg) that have undergone a deliberate and permanent genetic change. This means that it is forbidden to take an egg from a woman with a genetic disease and fix the defective gene in it, because this change will appear in all future generations. "The second prohibition is not absolute, because the following clauses open the door for change: if the higher Helsinki Committee makes a recommendation, and the Minister of Health thinks that the case does not violate human dignity, he can approve the treatment in this or that case. In connection with the complete reproduction of a person, there is no opening for the granting of a one-off permit."
And what is the legal situation abroad?
"The general approach, which disapproves of genetic intervention, can be seen more in international declarations than in legislation. In the bioethical statement, which was signed at the end of June this year in the city of Gijon in Spain, it is written that the creation of human beings identical to each other should be prohibited. This corresponds to the first prohibition in our law and expresses an international sentiment. The statement adds that the use of stem cells (embryonic cells that have not yet differentiated - AB) for healing purposes should be allowed, provided it does not result in the destruction of the embryos."

How exactly are they going to do this without harming the fetuses?

"Good question. The ban on harming fetuses is a Catholic element, and many of the countries that participated in the Congress were Catholic. In 98, the Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine of the Council of Europe, a body that includes more countries than the European Union, was published, which stated that an intervention aimed at changing the human genome is only permissible for medical purposes and only if the goal is not to change the genome of the offspring.
"What happened in England could have been foreseen. Dolly was produced, a few years have passed and no catastrophe has happened, so the approach is less panicked.
People started digesting the options, filtering and sorting. In the future we are expected to be disillusioned with the primal fear, which is partly rational and partly irrational. Our ability to make distinctions, to understand that not everything is black or white, will allow us to move forward. Of course, all of this is provided that no catastrophes happen along the way, that there are no wild scientists who will not resist the temptation, because the promotion of such breeding techniques immediately raises the problem of the slippery slope. So one way is to always walk on the plain and not climb anything, because without ups there are also no downs. But in most areas of life we ​​take risks after weighing the advantages against the disadvantages. The trick is of course to find the control mechanisms that will prevent the slippage, whether it is education, legislation or the culture of the company.
"The moral approach also depends on culture to a large extent. An only child of his parents died, and his mother can't give birth anymore. Should they be allowed to clone the deceased child, to restore him? I guess many companies will say no, and there will be some who will say yes." Why should the company decide? Why can't the bereaved parents decide for themselves? "Because the individual does not do it by himself, it is not just a decision of two people.
In Peru and many things done naturally, society usually does not interfere, but here the individual wants to mobilize science and technology to help him. It is the company's business, if only in terms of resource allocation - if more money is allocated to fertility treatments that cost a fortune, it comes at the expense of treating cancer patients. The cake is the same cake, so it's a social issue.">

Leave a Reply

Email will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismat to prevent spam messages. Click here to learn how your response data is processed.