“In vitro eugenics” is coming predicts Australian bioethicist



Taking a peek into the future, an Australian bioethicist says that it will be possible to use stem cell technology to breed better humans in a Petri dish. Robert Sparrow, of Monash University, writes in the Journal of Medical Ethics that it is not too early to launch a debate about what he calls “in vitro eugenics”.

His starting point is research into the creation of sperm and eggs from stem cells. Mice have already been produced with “artificial” gametes and the production of humans may not be too far away. Up to now, reports of this research have highlighted its potential for creating gametes for infertile men and women or for allowing homosexual males to produce eggs or homosexual women to produce sperm.

The production of embryos using sperm and eggs generated with stem cells rather than through sex would also be useful in studying genetic diseases and for drug testing. But Dr Sparrow points out that it would be splendid for eugenics. Generations of people could be created in Petri dishes, eliminating unsatisfactory genes in the quest for better human beings. “In effect,” he writes enthusiastically, “scientists will be able to breed human beings with the same (or greater) degree of sophistication with which we currently breed plants and animals.”

He calculates that two to three generations of human beings could be produced in a single year – rather than the 60 or so years that the pace of natural reproduction requires.

“An in vitro breeding programme of this sort would give future eugenicists a power undreamed of by governments and would-be genetic reformers of the past. In a 10-year research programme, scientists might produce 20–30 generations of human beings in vitro — enough to achieve significant changes in genotype. Advances in cell culture technology and in the science of gametogenesis might increase this figure still further. Obviously, the more generations it is possible to proceed through each year, the more powerful this technology will become.”

What about the ethics of this development? Dr Sparrow set  himself the task of describing the opportunities and obstacles that this technology would face, rather than a thorough ethical critique. However, he does mention a number of ethical considerations. On the plus side, it would be possible to eugenically enhance people without having to ask people to choose particular partners or to gestate numerous experimental embryos.

On the minus side, the people who result from the procedure would be “orphaned at conception”. With each generation in the Petri dish, they would be more distant from their forebears. However, Dr Sparrow is persuaded that “adequate love and care from their social parents is sufficient to allow children to flourish socially and psychologically”. Safety is definitely an issue, of course, because researchers would be navigating unknown waters in embryology. However, Dr Sparrow points out that this was also true of IVF and ICSI. “Thus, in vitro eugenics would not raise any issues we have not confronted before.”


thanks to ghandiloquent for the link..

“use stem cell technology to breed better humans in a Petri dish.”

we really are obsessed with being gods..and creating the super human..which is exactly what?


~ by seeker401 on April 12, 2013.

4 Responses to ““In vitro eugenics” is coming predicts Australian bioethicist”

  1. Reblogged this on .

  2. If they wanted to be Gods so bad as they do, why don’t they just follow Jack Lalanne and his diet and fitness exercises? Really, you don’t even hear this guy’s name brought up a lot. He lived to be 96 years old and even in his 90’s he was in great shape! He was preaching how bad the man made food’s were all the way back in the 1940’s.

    We can’t be gods but if we wanted to be better people, he sets the blueprint for that. Just imagine if everyone threw the poison down like sodas and McDonalds and started eating way healthier. First thing that would happen is obesity would go down and health care would also go down with a healthy country, but they choose profits over health, and that’s why there is a fucking McDonalds or Wendys or Burger King on every exit off the interstate. I live in a small county, of only 300 people and they built a McDonalds down here. Every day I go to work, it’s just crazy looking how long the line is there every morning.

    THEY want t be gods, the elite that is. They want us to be the obese morons at the bottom of the pyramid, that is how they think of us.

    • Well said. As long as a burger and coke are cheaper than a bowl of soup and a glass of orange juice this will continue.

  3. Reblogged this on Real News Australia.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: