Sunday, November 13, 2005

Parthenogenesis here we come.

Here's something a little different, the prospect reproduction without women. I'm used to the idea of of the superfluousness of men, but for their sperm (and money, let's not forget what's really important), but I have to admit I'm less familiar with the thought of superfluous women, but for their wombs.

All these various advances of reproductive technological are all very exciting for many, but I wonder that so many seem not to think beyond the birth of a healthy child. This article quotes Allan Pacey: ''There are safety concerns. This is genetic material and if you create a new life you have to know it is properly formed and imprinted." I have no idea what "imprinted" means, and I agree that proper formation is probably a good idea, but at what point does "genetic material" become a child? Is that the point at which the responsibility of the doctors & technologists expires? Parents who want to adopt usually have to go through some pretty serious vetting. Do those who would have a child through technological intervention?

It's also odd that we talk in terms of "creating" a new life. Isn't that what Frankenstein did? No, it isn't, really, he took existing material and, er, animated it. But then, so are these geneticists...

(Why is this stuff always in the UK press?)

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