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Human Genetic Modification


Icmoigigan
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What is your view on human genetic modification?  

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  1. 1. What is your view on human genetic modification?

    • It can greatly further human society.
      8
    • I dislike it, but not for any reason I can think of.
      0
    • I dislike it for a reason(please state reason)
      1
    • I like certain aspects of it, but not others.
      13


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If we are to have extended duration of humans in space, they will be exposed to terrible radiation. A 6 month trip to Mars will seriously increase long term risk of cancer. However, there are plenty of organisms able to withstand much more radiation than humans. In theory, we can make a few small genetic modifications, and create humans able to live under this radiation indefinitely.

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I definitely see problems with using genetic modification to intentionally steer behavior, but to cure genetic illness I'm all for.

 

Either way (if not in common practice), I definitely see the benefit we would get by exploring it scientifically.

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@ ecoli - I don't know, and I don't think we should cross that road until we get there.

 

Good points both of you guys-- silkworm, ecoli... I agree and I feel that talking about it now (which is what we are doing), considering the possibilities and examining them objectively will be vital when we the big ethical and pragmatic questions come knocking.

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Personally I believe that GM should have reign over ADD since it is a disorder. This is in my assumption that the modifications are pre-birth which to my knowledge is the only working route at the moment. Rambunciousness on the other hand is not to my knowledge a disorder of any sort and IMO comes from nurture rather than nature and could not be "modified" even if one wanted to, this is of course an assumption.

 

My personal view supports augmented intelligence and physical traits(regeneration, improved eyesight etc.) however only if genetic modifications are available to everyone.

 

From my perspective humans have always defined themselves through technology and I see Genetic modification as simply a new technology.

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Is ADD an actual disorder or is it just one because society says it is? I mean, is the kid's life ruined because of ADD or is it better, and do we label it and treat it simply because of how society is set up or because it actually causes harm to him as a human organism?

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Is ADD an actual disorder or is it just one because society says it is? I mean, is the kid's life ruined because of ADD or is it better, and do we label it and treat it simply because of how society is set up or because it actually causes harm to him as a human organism?

 

exactly my point. Whether or not ADD is an actual disorder is up for debate. And, I wouldn't want people modifying the human genome, just because they want a quiet kid they don't have to worry about.

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exactly my point. Whether or not ADD is an actual disorder is up for debate. And, I wouldn't want people modifying the human genome, just because they want a quiet kid they don't have to worry about.

 

I agree. ADD is "curable" anyway through psychological means and is not really a physical impairment come to think of it. I think genetic modification should focus more on debilitating illnesses that deal more on the physiological disorders rather than psychological ones. For example diseases such as sickle cell anemia, or hereditary development of cancer.

 

In my opinion though, genetic modification should be approached with caution and its effects be studied in the long term. For example complications have arisen due to genetically modified organisms such as corn, etc over long periods of years. These effects were not viewed in the laboratory over short periods of testing.

 

This also raises ethical issues since to test genetic modification, we'll have to use human subjects, or species with as near characteristics as possible.

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This also raises ethical issues since to test genetic modification, we'll have to use human subjects, or species with as near characteristics as possible.

 

That's what the death penalty is for. We have to stop this whining about ethics and try everything. If we stop doing things because we go mental we'll only stifle our own progress.

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exactly my point. Whether or not ADD is an actual disorder is up for debate. And, I wouldn't want people modifying the human genome, just because they want a quiet kid they don't have to worry about.

 

I tend to assume it is disorder because it can be "treated" or "cured" with modern medicine, if it is in fact not some sort of disorder I do not think Genetic modification could alter this since there would not be a gene.

 

I am not in favor of changing personalities with Genetic Modification, nor do i believe such a thing is practical. I think that in General in society however someone with something like ADD could probably live a less stressed life without it and that if it is a disorder it is no immoral top remove it from the time of birth. In a case like this I suppose that hypothetically it should be left individually to the parents.

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I tend to assume it is disorder because it can be "treated" or "cured" with modern medicine, if it is in fact not some sort of disorder I do not think Genetic modification could alter this since there would not be a gene.

 

You missed my point somewhat (though it's not your fault, I could have phrased it better).

 

Right now, ADD is treated as a disorder and is mostly treated with Ritalin. Ritalin is a nasty drug, and it is very much overused these days, because people think anything their doctor prescribes is safe.

 

Here's what I think ADD is. I think it's just a natural behavior difference amoung many adolecsent boys. I think this behavior is a result from combination of genes and diet. (AKA lots of sugary stuff, etc.)

 

However, these days, people like treating the symptoms of a disease rather then the cause. So instead of restricting the diet of kids, and seeing if that works, they give them drugs that 'labotomizes' them instead. A future step could be genetic engineering, controlling the behavior by controlling the behavior via expression of genes directly.

 

Example, inserting a code for Ritalin (or something similiar) directly into the genetic code, or something like that.

 

You see... it's overkill. We don't need to control the symptoms of overactive behavior. We need to control the source of it AKA diet and excersize.

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You missed my point somewhat (though it's not your fault' date=' I could have phrased it better).

 

Right now, ADD is treated as a disorder and is mostly treated with Ritalin. Ritalin is a nasty drug, and it is very much overused these days, because people think anything their doctor prescribes is safe.

 

Here's what I think ADD is. I think it's just a natural behavior difference amoung many adolecsent boys. I think this behavior is a result from combination of genes and diet. (AKA lots of sugary stuff, etc.)

 

However, these days, people like treating the symptoms of a disease rather then the cause. So instead of restricting the diet of kids, and seeing if that works, they give them drugs that 'labotomizes' them instead. A future step could be genetic engineering, controlling the behavior by controlling the behavior via expression of genes directly.

 

Example, inserting a code for Ritalin (or something similiar) directly into the genetic code, or something like that.

 

You see... it's overkill. We don't need to control the symptoms of overactive behavior. We need to control the source of it AKA diet and excersize.[/quote']

 

I understand now, you wish to have regulations on exactly what could be done with genetic modification, so that people maintained their personalities by not having things like that overridden.

 

I agree completely in a world with human genetic modification there should for sure be reasoned out limits outlining what can and can not be done, basically making sure that it as a new technology is not abused to create some sort of template human that everyone must emulate.

 

This control seems best suited to government or perhaps some sort of committee set up by the people specifically for the purpose.

 

Modifying personality and behaviour with GM seems fairly immoral to me and from what I can tell most of the world would tend to agree. I hope I captured your meaning correctly this time.

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I voted that some things can be good and others are bad because GE humans can be used for both good and bad. It may (not nessesarily) lead to descrimination, etc. The big factor I think is humans. It is our capacity to exploit and only see in the short term, that may cause GE humans down a bad path.

 

On the other hand it had great potential for good. It could be used to eliminate many deseases, give us better mental and physical capacities, extand life (and quality of life), allw injuries to heal better (it would be good if we could regrow limbs like some organisms can), etc.

 

Personaliy modification is a big controvosy, even today. We have drugs that can change the behaviour and personality of people (eg antidepressants). This could be taken to extremes where all our behaviours are regulated to fit a concept of "Normal", or to the other, where people can just modify their personalities and behaviours at whim.

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That's what the death penalty is for. We have to stop this whining about ethics and try everything. If we stop doing things because we go mental we'll only stifle our own progress.

 

With this statement can I safely presume that you support stem cell research using embryos and fetuses?

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With this statement can I safely presume that you support stem cell research using embryos and fetuses?

 

Yes, especially from those from abortion. This concept that doing so will somehow promote abortion is absurd, just simply make it a law that you can't financially compensate the mother for the abortion and all is well.

 

Also, a point should be made that I am an atheist and so I very much value human life. I wish I lived in a world without abortion, and I'm personally a bit bothered by it (especially the later it is). However, I do see it as a necessary remedy for irresponsible behavior that without it would lead to more unwanted children, more abused children, and more crime, including victimization of innocent people who had nothing to do with the irresponsibility of the parents. I however would never vote against it. If there weren't legal means for abortions, attempts would still be made that sometimes do not work and lead to a horrible existence for the child (though I do admit a horrible existence is better than nonexistence), women who have miscarriages would be investigated for murder, and anyone who wanted to have a child as part of a suicide mission would simply have to find the best woman to rape. In the last case, it's unfortunate the future child is being punished, but you can't empower rapists like that.

 

It's gruesome, I don't like it, but it's necessary to offset the irresponsibility of humans to make this a safer world. And if we get helpful material from it that can benefit mankind, it is irresponsible for us not to capatilize on it.

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Even if in the said research process scientists will be able to create living mutants and other deformities i.e. through laboratory accidents or just simply because the scientist wanted to find out if it was possible. After all, as you say, we mustn't let ethics stifle progress. An experiment is just an experiment, whether ethical or not. It is science.

 

And by the way, that's what we need ethics for, that's why we've got to "whine" about it, and not just try everything.

 

And death penalty, by the way, is another ethical issue.

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Right, living mutants and deformities are likely, but figuring them out from the ground up will be payoff. We could potentially learn so much from this reasearch that naturally occuring deformities could be eventually be something that occured only in ancient times. It's unethical not to do it, if you put into perspective all of those who suffer and die as a result of not doing research, and the fact that if the research is successful, those who benefit from it will far exceed those who are "created" with deformities. Progress is always the answer, and with everything difficult, sacrificies must be made.

 

The death penalty does not have to be an ethical issue if you look at it from a perspective of protection. The way I see it, if a person murders someone in 2 seperate times and places then that person is dangerous to others and needs to be put to death before more harm is done. Life in prison is not a guarantee against future action, death is. I don't like killing anyone, but the murder's death will likely prevent more deaths in the future (however that is not the topic of this thread, it just coincides with the stem cell, cloning question).

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Actualy, I think that ethics in this case is important. If you subscribe to Silkworm's view that ethics has no importance in experimentation, then I should be able to design a killer virus that will kill off all (or most) humanity, just because I am curious to see if it can be done.

 

This might be an extreme situation, so you might just look at weather the ebola virus' lethality could be engineered into the flue virus and then, because ethics don't apply, release it in a public space because you need better data as to how it would propagate in a real world environmant.

 

This is the reason we need ethics. To stop us from doing self destructive things.

 

However, to much emphasis on ethics can stifle science and technological inovation. There is a point somewhere inbetween the extremes that we need to achive. What is also importanat to accept is that this optimal point will change as society changes. This cneeds constant debate and public discussion for as long as we continue to do research in these areas.

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In lots of ways, all this discussion, and discussion by those who actually have political power, is lacking potence.

 

As the science of genetic modification grows, it is inevitable that someone, somewhere, will produce a genetically modified human. Just as a first human clone is inevitable.

 

Once the technology develops sufficiently, a demand for these services will grow, and a new industry develop. What parent would not like his/her child to be of high IQ, athletic, good looking etc. All this will eventually be possible, and will be achieved and paid for.

 

I do not really see any problem with this. The world of the future will be populated by smart, good looking, healthy and athletic people. Hey, what's the problem?

 

No doubt, this new industry will be regulated, and we will have laws preventing someone being modified to, for example, have an elephant's trunk growing out of his/her neck (shades of Monty Python). However, we can guarantee it will happen. I believe that the net result will be good.

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One problem i have with it could cause more problems, if they get something wrong, as well as the issue of designer babies, and then discrimination for not having perfect genes.

 

You could get to a point where you have a fashion of baby and in like 5 years every kid has brown hair and brown eyes because it is the fashion, it seems a bit extreme i know, but i'm sure everyone would have said 50 years ago that england would be 70% tertiary industry now they would have said you were crazy.

 

It has lots of implications if it is brought in, however i think it is good in the fact it could cure dieases that are uncureable so far.

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I don't think it is good practice in any practical sense other than curing debilitating diseases. It must be done for the research in hopes of raising the quality of life by many.

 

Also, although this is not an ethical stance by me, human selection has been known to destroy species, look at my screename and avatar for further info. I don't endorse human GM for every human as a daily vitamin because of that, history, though I do support research.

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