Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Obstacles at every turn won't stop the efforts of wannabe cloners

So Harvard wants to clone human beings? At least these scientists are being honest about their goal to clone human embryos unlike their counterparts in Missouri. Check out the NY Times article on this announcement. Efforts to create cloned human embryos are labeled, "develop(ing) embryonic stem cells from the adult cells of patients suffering from certain diseases."

One wonders if the Ivy League school and those who have invested millions in this project thought about how much money the nation of South Korea flushed down the toilet on Hwang Woo-Suk and his falsified human cloning experiments.

Also worth noting is the struggle that Robert Lanza and Advanced Cell Technology have had getting their hands on human eggs.
Dr. Robert Lanza said that Advanced Cell Technology, where he is vice president for research, has been trying unsuccessfully to recruit women to do nuclear transfer since December. Lanza said that about 100 woman have responded to ads but that they were dissuaded by the potential risks -- and the fact that they could earn thousands of dollars to do the same thing as an egg donor for fertility treatment.

"After six months of exhaustive effort, it seems like this is going to be problematic without some form of compensation," said Lanza.

The Wall Street Journal (subscription required) includes this information about Lanza's efforts to obtain eggs:
Initially there were many replies, but as women realized the discomfort and risks involved in hormone treatments, the numbers dwindled to two or three potential candidates. "We don't have a single egg at this point," (Lanza) says.

Not one egg after a "six-month effort" to recruit donors according to the article in the NY Times. Not one. Hwang used over 2,000 eggs and wasn't able to clone a human being. Do the scientists at ACT really think they'll be able to create a cloned human being if they can't get a single egg after six months of recruitment?

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