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Editing the "germ line" with CRISPR AKA "eugenics"
#1
Editing the "germ line" with CRISPR AKA "eugenics"
I've just finished watching the fascinating documentary by Storyville (I'm binging the stuff on lockdown - recommended - loads of ace documentaries) called The Gene Revolution (2020) - anybody else here seen it?

Basically the long and the short of it is that there's this incredible molecule called CRISPR which is part of our biology's viral immune system. Using CRISPR biologists have recently discovered that they can "edit out" bad genes for genetic diseases - before, it was just a pipe dream. The "germ line" are the sperm and eggs - if the edit is put there then the traits will be in the reproductive line of offspring - elsewise they only last one generation. Eugenics translates as "good gene" and only has negative connotations because of unethical use of "editing the gene pool" practices by, for example, the Nazis. An end to lethal and debilitating genetic disorders ? That would be eugenics, of course, and also "playing god" - except eugenics is just a word and all scientists worth their salt would never "play" with this. 

Do it - I say - get rid of just the horrible shit and leave it there - no need to make "super humans" and that would be a road to ruin - that's my 2c...yet...tricky! 

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#2
RE: Editing the "germ line" with CRISPR AKA "eugenics"
Yes, using Crispr Cas to edit out genetic diseases is probably a good idea, but no need to call it eugenics - that word comes with much baggage and is unnecessarily associated with selecting who may get children with whom - quite the opposite of what Crispr Cas can do
The fool hath said in his heart, There is a God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.
Psalm 14, KJV revised edition

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#3
RE: Editing the "germ line" with CRISPR AKA "eugenics"
I have a drawer in my fridge devoted to CRISPR only it is spelled different.

Seriously though, the problem with genetic editing is who decides what is bad?

Also, how robust is the technology to edit genes?

There was an episode of Star Trek where they edited genes to create super children with proactive antibodies and they caused unedited people around them to age prematurely.

Also zombies.
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#4
RE: Editing the "germ line" with CRISPR AKA "eugenics"
There is no need to compare gene editing with racist breeding programs. Being able to edit for resistance to Malaria would be achievable for anyone, not just Nazis.
Trump is so convinced that everything is about him he has convinced his followers that everything is about him.








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#5
RE: Editing the "germ line" with CRISPR AKA "eugenics"
(March 25, 2020 at 6:05 pm)chimp3 Wrote: There is no need to compare gene editing with racist breeding programs. Being able to edit for resistance to Malaria would be achievable for anyone, not just Nazis.

Ok, but only as long as the malaria-resistant people are blond with blue eyes. Wink

Boru
'A man is accepted into a church for what he believes.  He is turned out for what he knows.' - Mark Twain
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#6
RE: Editing the "germ line" with CRISPR AKA "eugenics"
(March 25, 2020 at 6:44 pm)BrianSoddingBoru4 Wrote:
(March 25, 2020 at 6:05 pm)chimp3 Wrote: There is no need to compare gene editing with racist breeding programs. Being able to edit for resistance to Malaria would be achievable for anyone, not just Nazis.

Ok, but only as long as the malaria-resistant people are blond with blue eyes. Wink

Boru


Any skin shade as long as they have the big bucks!
Trump is so convinced that everything is about him he has convinced his followers that everything is about him.








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#7
RE: Editing the "germ line" with CRISPR AKA "eugenics"
This is one of those areas where I wouldn't assert too strong an opinion yet because I don't fully understand both sides of the argument.

I am very excited about the possibility of directing our own evolution. While I count myself as a Humanist, I am often dismayed at the observation that as a species, we seem to be intelligent enough to be capable of remarkable accomplishments but yet stupid enough to do things like elect Donald Trump as President of the United States.

I think we NEED to improve ourselves. But I am open to safe-guards so that the best of us direct the direction we improve in. Just imagine Donald Trump in charge of genetically engineering the next generation.
Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.

Albert Einstein
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#8
RE: Editing the "germ line" with CRISPR AKA "eugenics"
(March 25, 2020 at 10:40 pm)AFTT47 Wrote: This is one of those areas where I wouldn't assert too strong an opinion yet because I don't fully understand both sides of the argument.

I am very excited about the possibility of directing our own evolution. While I count myself as a Humanist, I am often dismayed at the observation that as a species, we seem to be intelligent enough to be capable of remarkable accomplishments but yet stupid enough to do things like elect Donald Trump as President of the United States.

I think we NEED to improve ourselves. But I am open to safe-guards so that the best of us direct the direction we improve in. Just imagine Donald Trump in charge of genetically engineering the next generation.

Welcome to the human condition. I'd absolutely love that people were educated so that they voted in their civilization's best interest. All that venal political shit has likely been a problem since we were protozoa, though. Exceeding our genetic programming is going to be problematic.
I never thought I'd live long enough to become a grumpy old bastard. Here I am, killing it!
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#9
RE: Editing the "germ line" with CRISPR AKA "eugenics"
(March 25, 2020 at 3:38 pm)Alex K Wrote: Yes, using Crispr Cas to edit out genetic diseases is probably a good idea, but no need to call it eugenics - that word comes with much baggage and is unnecessarily associated with selecting who may get children with whom - quite the opposite of what Crispr Cas can do

Your argument is compelling Alex K and I agree - best not to call it "eugenics" - there is this I found however, maybe ok and fairly intuitive as to its meaning I reckon:

Quote:New eugenics is distinguished from previous versions of eugenics by its emphasis on informed parental choice rather than coercive governmental control.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_eugenics
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#10
RE: Editing the "germ line" with CRISPR AKA "eugenics"
Eugenics is a great idea with historically poor implementation,lol.

It's difficult to imagine a scenario in which eugenics doesn't ultimately lead to the worst consequences of it's implementation. Imagine a world where we got everybody everything that came up - no cost, by choice. What if 40% of human beings show a stronger response for a new line of enhancements?

Without intentional malice, and even with the best efforts of conservationists - I'd say that reduces the other 60% of humanity to a critically endangered species.
When in the course of human events it becomes necessary for a battle to commence then KPLOW, I hit em with the illness of my quill, Im endowed..with certain unalienable skills....  

-ERB


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