Tuesday, December 13, 2005

of mice and men

Scientists have created mice in labs with human stem cells injected into their brains. It almost sounds like a Kafka story; I keep thinking of The Metamorphosis, instead this time with the character waking up as a rat instead of an insect. I'm sure people will bring up ethical issues regarding mixing human and animal cells but as long as these scientists don't go too crazy and make mutant ninja turtles in labs, let the research continue.

"Researchers argue that co-mingling human and animal tissue is vital to ensuring that experimental drugs and new tissue replacement therapies are safe for people.

Others have performed similar experiments with rabbit and chicken eggs while University of California-Irvine researchers have reported making paralyzed rodents walk after injecting them with human nerve cells.

Doctors have transplanted pig valves into human hearts for years, and scientists have injected human cells into lab animals for even longer." Click-clack for the full article .

And here's an interesting fact: "mice are 97.5 percent genetically identical to humans."

-zoneil maharaj.


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