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Animal-Human Hybrids Spark Controversy

Exploring the stranger parts of the Internet in 2005, one might find claims of genetic experiments carried out on a variety of life forms including fish, birds, mice, seals and humans. Still images showing lined up in tanks containing multi-limbed humans and tall, humanoid, bat-like creatures turn out to be from a science fiction movie, just imagination. But there is some strange truth to be found. 

According to National Geographic, “Scientists have begun blurring the line between human and animal by producing chimeras, a hybrid creature that’s part human, part animal.”

“Chinese scientists at the Shanghai Second Medical University in 2003 successfully fused human cells with rabbit eggs. The embryos were reportedly the first human-animal chimeras successfully created. They were allowed to develop for several days in a laboratory dish before the scientists destroyed the embryos to harvest their stem cells. In Minnesota last year researchers at the Mayo Clinic created pigs with human blood flowing through their bodies. And at Stanford University in California an experiment might be done later this year to create mice with human brains. Scientists feel that, the more humanlike the animal, the better research model it makes for testing drugs or possibly growing “spare parts,” such as livers, to transplant into humans. “

Xenotransplantation is the growing of human parts in other animals (pigs, for example) and the harvesting of animal-grown organs for human use. This can be disasterous because you can transfer new diseases to our species. Besides, growing human brains in mice is cruel, gross and unnatural. I’m against it. But, like it or not, thanks to human nature, everything will be attempted. Have secret labs been growing part-human creatures for years, perhaps attempting create super fighters?

Consider the Mothman story: Escaped experimental creature? Unlikely, but today it is verifiably true that scientists are successfully producing part-human creatures.

Mice with human brains
In January, an informal ethics committee at Stanford University endorsed a proposal to create mice with brains nearly completely made of human brain cells. Stem cell scientist Irving Weissman said his experiment could provide unparalleled insight into how the human brain develops and how degenerative brain diseases like Parkinson’s progress.

via NBCNews

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