Oh boy, here comes the HUMAN CLONING aieeeee!!!111! hyperbole

May 27 2009 Published by under Uncategorized

Today's issue of Nature brings a study of some rather mundane genetic experiments. I mean, putting an innocuous marker which glows into an animal and showing that it is transmitted to the offspring is tame stuff. It barely even rises to the level of a control these days.
Unless, of course, you do it in a species from the Primate order that can arguably be called a "monkey". Uh-oh.
Obviously this is the work of, well, you know. The bad guy. Ol' fork tail hissownself. The absolute proof is after the jump.


The article in question is:
Generation of transgenic non-human primates with germline transmission
Erika Sasaki, Hiroshi Suemizu, Akiko Shimada, Kisaburo Hanazawa, Ryo Oiwa, Michiko Kamioka, Ikuo Tomioka, Yusuke Sotomaru, Reiko Hirakawa, Tomoo Eto, Seiji Shiozawa, Takuji Maeda, Mamoru Ito, Ryoji Ito, Chika Kito, Chie Yagihashi, Kenji Kawai, Hiroyuki Miyoshi, Yoshikuni Tanioka, Norikazu Tamaoki, Sonoko Habu, Hideyuki Okano & Tatsuji Nomura
Nature 459, 523-527 (28 May 2009) | doi:10.1038/nature08090; Received 27 September 2008; Accepted 30 April 2009
nature08090-GFPmarmoset-666.jpgsourceNow, this is not exactly my area of expertise so I'm just going to give you the highlights. The dumbed-down for me version is that the authors started with pre-implantation embryos (i.e. barely past the fertilized egg stage) from both natural marmoset intercourse and from an in vitro fertilization technique (to compare, really. They claim natural was better). They then used a lentiviral vector to deliver the bit of gene coding for the green florescent protein (GFP) to the embryo genome. (The familiar mouse genetic models use a slightly different technique and if I have it correctly, is laborious / expensive or uses too many donor eggs to pull off in monkeys.) The embryos were then implanted in surrogate dams. These authors managed to create five healthy offspring who glowed appropriately green when under UV light.
Now, as it happens, just by total coincidence I am suuure, one of these GFP transgenic marmosets received the internal numerical code of 666. The only male to result, too.

Of the surrogate mothers, seven that received natural or IVF embryos became pregnant. Three recipients miscarried on days 43, 62 and 82, and the other four delivered five healthy offspring (three singletons, one pair of twins), one male (number 666) and four females, on days 144-147 after ovulation


In another complete and utter coincidence ol' Beastie (as I like to call him) grew up and got busy with another lady marmoset.
nature08090-GFPmarmoset2-SonofBeast-2.jpg
source
Actually he donated some sperm for IVF procedures using the eggs of a wildtype (i.e., not genetically manipulated) females which were then transferred to surrogate dams. The study reports one successful live birth in which the skin of the offspring (we'll call him the Son of Beast) glowed green under UV.
Thereby demonstrating germline transmission of the transgene.
As I said, tame stuff...unless you consider this is in a member of the Primate..uh (King Philip Came Over For Grape Soda)... Order. So now we're going to get the screaming and ranting about how Human Cloning is the next thing around the corner. Or some such thing.
Think they'll notice the thing about the Mark of the Beast?

39 responses so far

  • becca says:

    That is just the most adorable little antichrist/son of beast ever! I think it looks a bit like a gremlin.
    This is fantastic news. Marmosets get malaria.

  • Maks says:

    Reading the abstract in the Nature newsletter was fascinating, the description here reminds me of trashy 60ties horror science fiction movies. Most likely both is true....

  • Cashmoney says:

    Since the folks that believe in stuff like 666 also think man is utterly distinct from all animals this should be no closer to human cloning than mouse genetics, right?

  • Eskimo says:

    This is just GFP, right?
    Creating monkeys with accelerated neurodegenerative disease (ie Huntington's, or, wait for the next Nature paper, Alzheimer's) is a bit different.
    But you could argue it's just as mean to do it to a marmoset as to a mouse.

  • Ha!
    I learned it:
    "King Philip Came Over For Good Sex".
    I was going to mock your (lack of) imagination on that one, but "the beast" totally makes up for it.

  • Dave (bringing out an old username for this one) says:

    I learned that King Philip came over from Geneva Switzerland.
    Did anyone else learn the following for the cranial nerves?
    Oh Oh Oh To Touch And Feel A Girl's Vagina And Hymen
    Gotta imagine some saggy old male anatomy prof in a stained lab coat saying it.

  • becca says:

    Way to kill a perfectly good marmoset thread, Dave. *glares*

  • Dude, you really do seem to get your jollies posting shit designed to make women feel uncomfortable. What the fuck's up with that shit?

  • DuWayne says:

    HAH!! Yer not DrugMonkey!!! Yer Drug666CALIGULA666!!1!111!!!
    You just made my list motherfucker!!!

  • Dave says:

    Gotta imagine some saggy old male anatomy prof in a stained lab coat saying it.
    ...In which case it seems more absurd. But it was actually taught to our class by a very female teaching assistant, who found it highly amusing. It definitely didn't seem to make her uncomfortable.
    I have an idea, Comrade. How about let's for just a little while assume women are not all fragile flowers in need of continuous emotional protection from you.

  • Dave says:

    ...Well, not "from you", Comrade. I meant 'by you'. Or just assume I put a period after 'protection'.
    Anyway, you get the idea.

  • Alex says:

    Here we have a thread on the evil glowing monkey demon who will destroy the world, and Dave and CPP are busy pissing on each other for something gender-related.
    Where are your priorities?

  • DuWayne says:

    Creepy Dave -
    Comrade. I meant 'by you'.
    Ok, how about by me!?!1??
    Fuck off, you creepy motherfucker!!! You make people uncomfortable, not just women. Pretty much every fucking time you make any kind of reference that mentions women, it pisses several of them off and makes others uncomfortable.
    I don't give a flying fuck who you heard that from - it was fucking gross and creepy.
    NOW, can we get back to the evile marmoset human hybrid from hell!!!!

  • Dave says:

    I don't give a flying fuck who you heard that from - it was fucking gross and creepy
    Maybe. But I remember my cranial nerves. She was a damn good teacher.

  • neurolover says:

    CPP, do you care that your foul language makes me uncomfortable? It does, you know. (Mind you, it's not the same discomfort as Dave's comment, because Dave's doing it to get a reaction from women). But, I'd be happier without the obscenities in the comments here, from anyone.
    And, glowing, transgenic marmosets, named 666 are pretty pretty awesome. I want to see it replicated though. Are we pretty confident? The reports raised my Korean lab cloning scandal sensors. And, yes, I know this lab was in Japan, and I don't know anything about the field, so my sensors aren't particularly solid).

  • Mad Hatter says:

    Sweet! Where do I sign up to get a dozen green glowy Mini-Me's made? Actually, there are a bunch of brighter and different-colored fluors now, so they wouldn't even have to be green....

  • Paul Murray says:

    Can we use this stuff to fix that gene that causes humans to be unable to make their own vitamn C?

  • liudvikas says:

    We should clone a human, just for the fun of it. πŸ™‚

  • becca says:

    I for one welcome our new evil genetically-modified green and blue scurvey-prof marmoset world dominating overlords.
    But not Dave. Or even CPP. Cause I'm a delicate fucking flower who wants to be protected from them both!
    Although, I would settle for my own personal army of marmosets to sic on them when they get out of line.

  • Anonymous says:

    Ooh, how about a blacklight photo of the Antichrist staring out of the dark with his adorable little green glowing eyes!

  • DuWayne says:

    Dammit becca, I'm a delicate fucking fleur, who needs protection from all this foul fucking language!!!!
    Although I have to say, an army of human/marmoset hybrids that glow green would be an awesome thing to have at my disposal...I would even be fine with them following the orders of their cute and cuddly, Demonoid master...

  • Toaster says:

    Glowing motherfucking airborne sharks!
    At least, I'd rather have an army of them than marmosets any day; marmosets are picky eaters, sharks don't care.

  • megan says:

    For Big Brother and social engineering fearful types, this could be used to mark 'selected' humans of whatever estranged class or criminal by infecting with the transgenic gene so they could be easily scanned and identified. If a virus can transmit it then could theoretically be introduced into a populace or individual. Cloning has nothing to do with it. Can it only be transcribed into the host's DNA at the embryo stage? For therapeutic programs they are already looking to use viruses to encode repaired gene sequences into a disabled person's cells, ie Alzhiemers etc.
    The poo pooing by self aggrandized science academics about any ethical questions to be considered in manipulating million year old evolved DNA life is astounding and arrogant. Until any of these scientists have lab results from testing lasting over a century, the rest of the human race has a right to question the safety and ethics of any research being done and introduced for profit or for charity/health.

  • neurolover says:

    Geez, do I have to stop reading? (And, yes, I do really say Geez, and Gosh in real life).

  • DuWayne says:

    Geez, do I have to stop reading?
    Fuck no you don't. (And yes, I do really say fuck and fucking morons in real life)

  • Luigi says:

    I take it, Megan, that you have never had to fill out Institutional Biosafety forms for routine recombinant DNA work. They are a pain. Left over 1970s paranoia.
    The best evil masterminds are working on virally-mediated transposon vectors. You could theoretically have a pandemic that leaves your transgene of interest only in select populations. You could maybe even have a sleeper transgene under steroid control, so nothing seemed amiss until you were ready to initiate your evil plan.

  • neurolover says:

    "You could maybe even have a sleeper transgene under steroid control, so nothing seemed amiss until you were ready to initiate your evil plan."
    Wasn't this supposed to be the plan in Dark Angel, except that they lost audience and gave up, and made it all stop making sense?
    I don't agree with Megan, but I do believe this stuff needs to be regulated. And, in the US, fertility clinics have become a no man's land of profit-making without regulation. I think no one would try this in a human being (since, really, even the most excited of us, don't really want to spend gazllions of dollars in order to have offspring with glowing feet, even though it's really really cool). But, it should actually be against the rules/laws before someone tries to do it rather than after (when we would end up scrambling to figure out some way to make it illegal after the fact). I think we're stuck between regulation and freedom about what one should be able to decide about one's offspring and it's a discussion worth having.

  • Are the evil glowing monkeys in league with the "ZOMG!!! Mice with human brainz!!!!!"?

  • DuWayne says:

    AARRGGHH!! Now the cloned Evile Glowing Marmoset/human hybrid from hell and it's Demonoid minion DrugCaligula, have joined with previously assumed to be mild mannered Canadian, CathVWXYNot? and her workshop from hell produced MouseMan Slaves!!!11!!1111!!!!
    I think it may be raining blood!!!!11!!!!

  • juniorprof says:

    I'm totally disappointed that the humanized foxp mice didn't start talking, that would have been awesome! Perhaps they need some appropriate schooling?

  • DrL, your Japanese correspondent says:

    "Now, as it happens, just by total coincidence I am suuure, one of these GFP transgenic marmosets received the internal numerical code of 666. The only male to result, too."
    Now, let’s look at this research from the cultural perspective.
    Only male got the special number, because in Japan females do not count. πŸ˜‰
    I would not read to much into the number 666 (although it makes for a fun post I must admit, the Son of the Beast sounds wicked too πŸ˜‰
    In Asian cultures, in contrary to Christian cultures, 666 can actually have some positive connotations:
    β€œin cultures in Asia, the pronunciation of 666 sounds very much like the phrase, "things going smoothly," and it is considered to be very lucky. Many shopkeepers will place a sign or plaque with 666 written or carved on it in their window as a good luck charm. The same goes for the front door of a home or apartment.” (from here)
    In Japan people would be very much indifferent to number six, but some ethos infiltrated from the Western culture, and there is actually a manga with a title β€œ666 Satan”, yet is it not as much satanic as it sounds. As the manga is about adventures of a boy, maybe some manga fan gave the marmoset the name after the main character from this comic book?

  • I'm totally disappointed that the humanized foxp mice didn't start talking, that would have been awesome!

    LOL! First, I nostalgically thought of the Rats of NIMH. Second, I imagined legions of talking mice cheerfully learning to swear in CPP's lab. Either way. Good times!

  • DuWayne says:

    All right, now I can attempt to be serious for a minute now that my first quiz has been taken...
    Megan -
    The poo pooing by self aggrandized science academics about any ethical questions to be considered in manipulating million year old evolved DNA life is astounding and arrogant.
    What's astounding and arrogant, is the assumption that science academics actually "poo poo" ethical questions to be considered in manipulating a few billion year old evolved DNA life. Because aside from a few nuts and some in a profit motivated context, I am unaware of any scientists who actually scoff at ethical concerns. While I certainly believe that we need to have more discussions about eugenics and bioengineering - preferably discussions that don't actually involve "OMG!!! Human/Animal hybrids!!!" or "OMG!!! Racial/Ethnic/Religious genocide!!!" type hysterics, pretending that scientists are amoral loons who Damn the consequences - just need results!!! is supremely ignorant.
    It isn't academic scientists who are afraid to discuss ethical concerns. It's society at large who are too often incapable of discussing it rationally - incapable of actually taking a moment to get past their knee-jerk reactions and learn what the fuck their actually trying to discuss.
    Fuck all! I have so many damned things to write about and now I have to write a more serious post about this. About damned time I guess, been too long since I picked up on discussing eugenics and other controversial issues.
    Personally, I prefer the anti-christ angle. The bible always did warn that the anti-christ would be rather beautiful - I just didn't take that to mean quite cute and cuddly...

  • DuWayne says:

    Many shopkeepers will place a sign or plaque with 666 written or carved on it in their window as a good luck charm.
    Having a close friend who actually teaches Japanese and regularly takes students over, I have been long aware that the anti-christ was Japanese - or at least would be welcomed early on by them...

  • gillt says:

    What's this about cloning? The monkeys weren't cloned. The goal of the study was germline transmission of GFP (the transgene), and for that you outcross (wildtypes).

  • Luigi says:

    gillt is right. Besides, humans have already been cloned. The fiasco with the Korean lab was simply over the efficiency with which it could be done. Most countries have only outlawed human cloning for reproductive purposes, by the way. Cloning for stem cells is okee dokee. Except embryonic stems cells are sort of falling out of favor as a stem cell source given recent advances in reprogramming. So really, the best use for cloning is still to build a genetically-optimized super army. Like the Storm Troopers in Star Wars. But they didn't seem all that tough. I don't know who was in charge of that project. Probably the best minds were assigned to the Death Star.

  • Mu says:

    Didn't answer the all important question so: What happens if you feed them after midnight?

  • Lab Lemming says:

    So how long until people tweak this virus to infect adult human skin cells and start selling it on the night club scene?

  • Isabel says:

    "started with pre-implantation embryos (i.e. barely past the fertilized egg stage) from both natural marmoset intercourse and from an in vitro fertilization"
    I guess I will have to read the article to find out how they recovered the pre-implantation embryos that resulting from natural intercourse...

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