Biological "Advancement"?

Falling In Love With The Board
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Posts: 7989
November 3rd, 2008 at 07:23pm
Okay, so I searched around a bit to make sure that I wasn't repeating an old topic, (sorry if I am!) and since there isn't really a topic on the wonderfully battleground subject of Biology, I thought I'd try to start something.

I know there's a topic on where we came from (Evolution/Creationism/Spaghetti Monster Spit, idk), but I was wondering on people's takes on where we're heading in the future. For instance;

In my AP Biology class, we were discussing genetic mutations, and the diagnosis Progeria came up.

Basically, people born with Progeria live to be 20 at most, due to the fact that their DNA replicates at a much faster rate than normal, which is how we age.

Each time DNA replicates itself, it gets progressively shorter and shorter, until it can't replicate anymore. This is where everything with DNA starts "falling apart".

Progeria is a very rare occurence, but because it happens, there's obviously a program in search of it's cure.

This is where it gets interesting.

While Progeria, as many other life inhibiting diseases, is heartbreaking to see, it's cure is somewhat controversial. As the only problem with this diagnosis is that they are aging at a much faster rate, the only cure would be to find a way to slow the aging process.

As you can see, if this were discovered, I'm sure Progeria wouldn't be the first thing on people's minds.

So we were down to a question: Allow Progeria to continue occuring? Or find a way to slow aging and create another way for people to live longer than they really need to?

Or the real opinion: whether or not finding medicinal cures/controlling gene mutations are true advancements, or just a way to cheat out of population control/natural selection?

Other topics are also abound: The Human Genome Project and the worry of possible future genetic descrimination, controlling the preferences of offspring and it's future generational effects, etc.

Or anything you find interesting Biology-wise.