As the world wakes up tomorrow morning to its genetically modified cereal at breakfast, eating bacon from transgenic pigs, toast made from GM soya flour and eggs from “total farming” batteries, people can be sure that the realm of genetically modified children no longer belongs to the annals of science fiction. The scientific review “Human Reproduction” has printed a feature describing the process used in the USA (Santa Barbara Medical Centre) in which no less than 15 babies in the last four years have been born, after genetic modifications were made in fertility treatment programmes. The babies have genes from three people, two mothers and one father. The head of the team, James Cohen, explained in the feature that the treatment involved the transfer of the ovocyte cytoplasm (the female germinal cell) from the donor of the egg to the host. The donor’s cytoplasm is injected into the ovocyte of the host and it is then fertilised with the father’s sperm, creating a transgenic child. The embryo thus receives genes from the host mother, the donor mother (through mitochondrial DNA) and the father. It is known that the mitochondria (genetic material which is not contained in the cells) can provoke genetically transmitted diseases, therefore this embryonic treatment poses a real threat to the child : creating an infertile baby for the infertile parent. Such manipulations of the laws of nature are bound to produce adverse effects, as Mother Earth will surely react to mankind’s attempts to selfishly transgress the elementary and basic rules of science.
TIMOFEU BYELO PRAVDA.RU
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