9th Jan 98 NZ Herald Richard Seed Offers to Clone Human Race
8 Sept 98 John Seed says he will clone himself first and implant the experiment in his wife Gloria.
LONDON - The Scottish scientists who created Dolly the sheep, the first mammal cloned from an adult animal, yesterday condemned as "grossly unethical" an American physicist's plans to extend the technique to humans. CWcago-based scientist Dr Richard Seed says he intends to pursue human cloning in the United States or anywhere else in the world where he is permitted. However, Dr Seed defended himself. "I don't think there's any real moral consideration," he said. "We are going to become one with God," he said. "We are going to have almost as much knowledge and almost as much power as God. Cloning ... is the first serious step in becoming one with God. Very simple philosophy." But Harry Griffin, assistant director of the RosUn Institute in Edinburgh, where' Deny was created, warned that far from being a "master race," human clones wotdd suffer unacceptable levels of still-births, infant mortality, cancer and possibly premature ageing. A total of 277 eggs were used in the creation'of Dolly, only 29 of which developed to the stage where they could be implanted and only one of which produced an animal, he said. "Besides of the broader ethical issues, there is a need to recognise that this technology is in its infancy and poses substantial risks, even to lambs." Mr Griffin said -cloning to produce valuable therapeutic proteins in the milk of sheep or organs for transplantation could be justified because of the large benefits to human health. . But he added: "The idea that this technology could be used in humans would be grossly unethical." Strong reaction to Dr Seed's plan has also came. from reproductive specialists. "I think the man is clearly unhinged and I don't think he is to be taken seriously,' said Lord Robert Winston, the London-based fertility expert who helped produce the world's first test-tube baby, Louise Brown, in 1978. Dr Jan-de Grifo, director of the division of reproductive endocrinology at New York University, said he feared bad legislation could result. "The biggest fear that I have [is that], in a short time - two days, five days - legislation is going to be passed that will make this against the law. [Seed] basically took Clinton to task over this and there is going to be a shootout at the OK Corral. I "That's okay with me but what I worry about is that they are going to pass legislation that doesn't understand the basic science," he said. United States President Bill Clinton has already issued an executive order blocking the use of federal funds from being spent on such research. - REUTERS
10 Jan 97 Dr Seed counts up his clones CHICAGO -
Physicist Richard Seed says he foresees as many-as 200,000 human clones a year once his process is perfected, at a price for each clone far lower than the $1 million the first one will cost. "When I was seven years old I was brilliant and crazy. I didn't mind being called crazy," the 69 year-old scientist told his first formal news conference since he startled the world by saying he was ready to clone a human. Dr Seed said the initial market for human clones would come from the 10 to 15 per cent infertile couples who could not conceive by alternative methods such as test-tube fertilisation or the use of surrogate mothers. In the United States, he said that probably represente maximum of 5000 to couples. "It's my opinion that after that it will be 200,000 [couples] he said. Dr Seed has said he medical team lined up but has named the members. While researchers in Scotland used a mammary gland cell-lo clone Dolly the sheep, Dr said said he would use a white blood cell for a human, employing an electric current to initiate cell division. For the patient, he said it would take 40 seconds to implant the embryo, with no anesthetic. She would be in and out of theoffice in 20 minutes.
MICHAEL CONLON reports that the Idea of human cloning has an irresistible attraction for mankind - the search for immortality.
CHICAGO - The fact that an obscure scientist could become an instant media celebrity by annoucing he was ready to create a human clone shows the degree to which the issue fascinates and scares humankind, experts have said. "It's not a fear of science but of how to control the technology ... and that goes back in fiction to Frankenstein," said Anne Mgert, a professor in the anthropology and sociology department at Loyola University of Chicago. 'We weren't upset about (cloning) animals," she added. "It's the same reason we're concemed about abortion or using reproductive technologies. Twenty years ago it was test tube babies - it treads so closely to human life itself' The idea also has an irresistible pull because it touches.on a central theme throughout civilisation - the search for inunortality - added Kenneth Howard, a professor of psychology at Northwestern University in Chicago. But those searching for a fountain of youth, he said, overlook the fact that the human duplicate would return as an infant. Richard Seed, a Harvard-edticated physicist, reignited the debate that began last year when researchers in Scotland cloned a sheep named Dolly by saying he was ready to d.0 the same to a human. Within hours Dr Seed was condemned by the White House and attacked in Congress. He also rode a wave of media publicity that put him on ABC-TV's Nightlinewhere he even offered to clone host Ted Koppel. The University of Illinois at Chicago said the 69-year-old Dr Seed had used space there for three years to do small-scale experiments on the immune systems of mice. His space had neither a desk nor a flle cabinet. A university spokesman said Dr Seed had published more than 20 scientific papers including a 1994 article in the Joumal of the American Medical Association. He was also involved in human embryo transplant research 20 years ago. The Chicago Tribune reported that Dr Seed was broke, and had been evicted from a home last July after the bank foreclosed on a $330,000 loan for nonpayment of taxes. The attraction of human cloning is reflected in the popularity of science fletion works that have long mined the subject. Allan Cole coauthored the eight-volume Sten series that featured an "etemal emperor" who used clones to replace himself, enabling him to rule for several thousand years. "The only use for cloning would be for people to recreate themselves, and you'd have to be a megalomaniac to do that," Cole said. "It's like splitting the atom. Technology is neither good or evil. It's just the use of it," he said. 'Utimately, someone's going to misuse it." James P. Hogan, British author of Inherit the Stars and Proteus Operation, calls himself a "technoloocal optimist" who believes cloning critics may be seeling the idea short. "It's just being identical to ourselves," I , they are identical, but from the moment of birth, you have different experiences, different memories ... "We're going through a phase where all the imagery we soak up throught the media is sensationalised so people are going, through a negative phase," he added. "There are all these fears about science, everyone worries about the mad scientist. I think we are better, fitter. "We need to get our breath back." REUTERS
Jan 11 97 Bill Clinton asked congress to ban human cloning for five years, citing the founding fathers respect of science and the new millennium.
VATICAN CITY, March 9 Pope John Paul II condemned Monday the excesses of genetic engineering, describing it as a technique used by totalitarian groups to violate human rights. "
Totalitarian idealogies, which degrade Man by reducing him to an object while breaking basic human rights, raise in a worrisome way certain uses of the potentials offered by biotechnology, " he said. The pontiff, who has already specifically come out against human cloning, was speaking to the assembly of the pontifical council for health matters, which amounts to the Vatican's health ministry.
The pope was opposed to the "manipulation of life, at the service of boundless ambition, which deforms the aspirations and hopes of mankind and which only increases its suffering."
Last week the Vatican renewed its strong opposition to cloning, saying it is a serious attack on human dignity, but said genetic research into illnesses could be useful.
However this position is marred by the following weak statment:
From: fabrice <[email protected]> To: Sakina <[email protected]> Subject: re: Vatican wishywashiness
Date: Thu, 14 Oct 1999 11:46:07 +0100
Yesterday the Vatican issued an official statement about biotechonology.
The statement was issued by monsignor Sgreccia, vicepresident of the Pontiff Academy for Life (!?) and it goes like this:
"We cannot marry the metaphisical and ideological position of those who affirm that touching genes of plants and animals means to put man in the place of God. Biotechnologies - in particular with plants - can solve great problems: create food in famished lands, bring food to isolated areas, increase the overall offer of food to fight hunger in the world.
(...) Our position is that three conditions are necessary: Before putting transgenic products on the market three conditions ought to be satisfied: 1there ought to be a risk evaluation, 2. information through labelling should be offered to consumers and 3. the situation ought to stay monitored."
An overall weak statement critical of more radical activism and reflecting the old patriarchal spiritual dychothomy - man has a right to mess upwith nature: this has nothing to do with Father God up in Heaven! And underestimating the threat/challange of 'Ye be as gods' (which by the way includes the theme of globalization - a threat but maybe also a challange if we are to view it in non-fundamentalistic terms