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Oregon scientists make embryos with 2 women, 1 man

health & sciences university prevent inheriting diseases dna alteration designer babies

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#16 qdave

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 17:16

Why can't we just let humans be normal?...

Because its time to improve upon the old design.


#17 remixedcat

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 17:34

untill you get defects from manupulation, lack of genetic variety causes the human race to lose immunitites we otherwise wouldn't have had, people who can't afford to #design" their babies, get lower class babies who won't be allowed to mingle with the "perfects", and so on and so on. the issues vary from purely sociopolitical to genuine genetic dangers.


wow one of the only posts I can agree with you on

#18 Richteralan

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 17:39

Because its time to improve upon the old design.

Yes because we understand the old design perfectly (if we were designed).

#19 remixedcat

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 18:26

are kids gonna start having live tiles?

#20 HawkMan

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 18:33

Live Nano tattoos is somethign I definitiely see happening at some point anyway. though that's neither here not there.

#21 helios01

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 19:41

This is progression, hopefully technology allows to start doing this soon. We are imperfect beings, if we can improve ourselves then we should definitely try. As with anything worth doing, it has risks. But we've been doing 'unnatural' things for many years, even medicine, the simple of act of using painkillers is unnatural. On a related note, this kind of thing reminds me of Gattaca.

#22 FMH

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 19:45

Why can't we just let humans be normal?...


'Normal' changes every decade. This is the 'normal' of the future.

#23 qdave

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 19:48

Yes because we understand the old design perfectly (if we were designed).


But we weren't created. So its a good opportunity to learn about how we function, and eliminate certain diseases.

#24 HawkMan

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 19:53

This is progression, hopefully technology allows to start doing this soon. We are imperfect beings, if we can improve ourselves then we should definitely try. As with anything worth doing, it has risks. But we've been doing 'unnatural' things for many years, even medicine, the simple of act of using painkillers is unnatural. On a related note, this kind of thing reminds me of Gattaca.

Actually painkillers aren't necessarily unnatural, our brian itself makes painkiller drugs and send through our system.
Still drugs and genetic manipulation on a designer "baby" level is not even remotely the same, again, look up the dangers of lack of genetic diversification. We can perec the human all we want and make the perfect human that's immunie to everything we know. Then one day, we run into a new virus, it's fairly harmless, but it changes and adapts. Unfortunately humans have perfected themselves and removed all randomness, so now everyone is affected by this virus that has not turned lethal, meanwhile, if we had let nature add in all the randomness, a fair percentage of the population would have had a "useseless" gene or somethign that made them immune to this virus or able to fight it off, at worst, these people would have survived the rest of humanity, at best their genes could have been used to create a cure and vaccine for the rest.

Remove natural diversity and randomness, and we don't just lose individualism, we lose the ability to fight the unknown.

#25 vetTHolman

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 19:57

We have people born with extra chromosomes, genetic predispositions to diseases, overcrowded teeth, dwarfism, the baldness gene, allergies, blindness, deafness, extra limbs, defective organs, etc - very undesirable qualities that often severely impact quality of life. If we can eliminate them and improve the health and well-being of the human race with minimal risk isn't that at least worth investigating? Obviously there needs to be regulatory oversight to prevent abuse and reckless behaviour but it should be based upon scientific merit, not religious "morality".


I look at this like cloning, something that's probably never going to go anywhere. But entertaining the discussion, I'm definitely not against using science and technology to improve life and help people who need it. I'm just saying that I don't think we should mess with genetics 'just because' - if it can help someone live a better life without hurting anyone else, by all means, be my guest. But I don't think it's worth the risk of just trying out new stuff to see what happens, or to make sure people get a kid with a certain color of eyes. I think we have a higher error rate than nature itself, and there's a huge risk of screwing up someone's life when you start messing with this stuff.

I can't think of any example where having three parents offers an improvement for any of the issues you mentioned. I'd love to have no allergies and a better set of eyes, but I don't think having an extra mother is going to help that. And since humans are designed to have two parents, genetically speaking, I can't help but think that bad things could come of trying to change that. Even if it looks okay in a lab, who's to say what happens 50 years down the road? Again, there's a huge risk of ruining someone's life and absolutely no gain. Wake me up when you can grow someone a new liver :)

#26 helios01

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 20:23

@HawkMan, I don't see this as creating a uniform genetic makeup for the entire human race. What they seem to be doing is removing the imperfections (diseases, defectiveness,..) out, the genetic makeup would still be dependent on your family. Are diseases and imperfections an immunity system for humans? if they can be removed before birth, then why not? Throwing many chemicals into our body may be reducing our immunity more than genetic manipulation could, yet we still do it. You mention that medicine in some cases assists to what our body still does, but it's still unnatural when you do it in quantities the body could never do by itself. Diseases and defectiveness is not what makes up our individuality and uniqueness.

#27 Richteralan

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 22:32

But we weren't created. So its a good opportunity to learn about how we function, and eliminate certain diseases

and to continue your sentence:

"before we make any artificial improvement".

#28 McCordRm

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 22:51

I gotta tell you... I've always been pretty happy with myself. I have no desire to
get plastic surgery or the like to make "improvements". But if I could eliminate
disease, aging, and the like? I'd do it in a ****ing heartbeat. If I could get
stronger bones, better eyesight, etc? I'd do it without hesitation.

Call our existence whatever you like... but if our design is "perfect" according
to some Higher Being, then that Being is a dumbass. Give me immortality
and a space ship and I'll be a happy man.

#29 theyarecomingforyou

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 23:23

I look at this like cloning, something that's probably never going to go anywhere. But entertaining the discussion, I'm definitely not against using science and technology to improve life and help people who need it. I'm just saying that I don't think we should mess with genetics 'just because'


You say that as if you think scientists are just doing this for laughs or because it's interesting. The reality is that there is huge potential for such research, as it could lead to the end of birth defects and lead to improved quality of life.

I don't think it's worth the risk of just trying out new stuff to see what happens, or to make sure people get a kid with a certain color of eyes. I think we have a higher error rate than nature itself, and there's a huge risk of screwing up someone's life when you start messing with this stuff.


Again, you attempt to trivialise legitimate research by associating it with cosmetic changes and experimentation. We need a regulatory framework in place to ensure that any genetic changes made are thoroughly understood and of legitimate benefit. Genetic experiments on animals like mice and primates can give us a good understanding of what impact the changes will have, which can be combined with scientific modelling and gene research.

I can't think of any example where having three parents offers an improvement for any of the issues you mentioned.


However, if it poses effectively no risk to the individual then why shouldn't multiple people be able to share a genetic child? Just because it doesn't happen in nature doesn't mean it should be discounted.

And since humans are designed to have two parents, genetically speaking, I can't help but think that bad things could come of trying to change that.


As I have said, thorough research and regulation is necessary to ensure that the risk of adverse effects is minimised or eliminated altogether; and while it is natural to express scepticism about such research, without a learned understanding of genetics your concern is pure speculation.

Still drugs and genetic manipulation on a designer "baby" level is not even remotely the same, again, look up the dangers of lack of genetic diversification.


Given the scientific understanding of the importance of genetic diversification any regulatory body would need to ensure that genetic diversification is maintained and that there isn't a tendency to rely on certain genetic traits. Considering that even laypeople such as yourself understand the risks it is safe to assume that scientists and regulators also do.

#30 vetTHolman

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 23:28

You say that as if you think scientists are just doing this for laughs or because it's interesting. The reality is that there is huge potential for such research, as it could lead to the end of birth defects and lead to improved quality of life.


Honestly, I'm really not seeing the benefits here. How does having two mothers offer any benefit whatsoever, other than satisfying someone's weird fantasy love life? Like I said, I'm not objecting to using what we know about genetics to save lives and heal people, but this doesn't seem to have any legitimate purpose other than to be able to say 'we did.'

And as far as science and regulatory bodies watching out for us... history leads me to question how reliable that oversight is ;)