Re: NANFA-- News: GloFish in the news
Mon, 12 Jan 2004 14:10:38 EST

No one wants to force you to do anything Steffen and we have been
manipulating the genes of animals for millennia. Since all animals share most of their
genes and we often crossed different species to get the desired qualities in our
animals we did indeed do gene transfer. The difference is just a matter of to
what degree. When certain doctors found that inoculating humans with cow pox
virus gave people immunity to small pox what was known as the popular press
back then claimed it was unnatural to put cow pox in humans and portrayed humans
with cow parts growing out of their bodies as a result of inoculation. Wide
spread panic often insued and some doctors were persecuted for even suggesting
people get inoculated. This is another case of uninformed people trying to
cause similar panic because of something they can't understand. Just like the
movies of the 50's that showed exposure to large doses of radiation causing huge
monsters to grow this portrayal of gene transfer is totally unfair and
unrealistic. There will be no huge monsters tearing up LA or Tokyo. Viruses cause
gene transfer naturally and genes from rabbits can be found in turtles as well as
other odd crosses. Usually the genes are not expressed. What is it that you
fear from gene transfer? Glow in the dark rabbits? Food plants that need less
pesticide and fertilizer? Pigs that produce organs that could be transplanted
into humans so humans can live at the pigs expense? Maybe centipede chickens
with ten legs? No harm can come from eating such a chicken no matter how gross
it may seem to us. I do have a problem with food plants that produce unnatural
pesticides in their fruit or grain but reasonable monitoring can and will
control these things. As I said earlier the real problem lies with the possibility
of producing more virulent strains of bacteria which has been dome for many
years with little monitoring. This should be very closely monitored but gene
transfer in higher animals poses little or no risk. Probably the best thing
about gene transfer is that we can gain a more complete understanding of how genes
work and what genes do what. Hmmm then again those giant killer saber toothed
rabbits might not be very cool!

"Who died and left you in charge?"
"Captain Bipto!"
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