It has been an interesting time for Science this week...with developments that will shock and terrify those who think that we, as Humanity, are playing Dice with God, and awe and inspire those of us who believe that knowledge and modern technological advances are the way forward for the betterment of our race!
Things kicked off at the beginning of this week with the announcement that Scientists in China are currently working on cows that will be able to produce drinkable human breast milk or its nearest Scientific equivalent within the next couple of years! Below is a direct quote taken from the Sky News pages: THIS IS NOT A HOAX!
"Chinese GM Cows Make Human Breast milk
3:49pm UK, Monday June 06, 2011
Chinese scientists have genetically modified dairy cows to produce human breast milk, and hope to be selling it in supermarkets within three years.
The milk produced by the transgenic cows is identical to the human variety and has the same immune-boosting and antibacterial qualities as breast milk, scientists at China's Agricultural University in Beijing say.
The transgenic herd of 300 was bred by inserting human genes into cloned cow embryos which were then implanted into surrogate cows.
The technology was similar to that used to produce Dolly the sheep.
The milk is still undergoing safety tests but with government permission it will be sold to consumers as a more nutritious dairy drink than cow's milk.
Workers at the university's dairy farm have already tasted the milk, and say it is sweeter and stronger than the usual bovine variety.
There are 1.5 billion people in the world who don't get enough to eat. It's our duty to develop science and technology, not to hold it back. We need to feed people first, before we consider ideals and convictions.Professor Li Ning, director of the research project
"It's good," said worker Jiang Yao. "It's better for you because it's genetically modified."
The scientists have also produced animals that are resistant to mad cow disease, as well as beef cattle that are genetically modified to produce more nutritious meat.
The director of the research project, Professor Li Ning, says Western concerns about the ethics of genetic modification are misplaced.
"There are 1.5 billion people in the world who don't get enough to eat," he said. "It's our duty to develop science and technology, not to hold it back.
"We need to feed people first, before we consider ideals and convictions."
In contrast to Europe, China has eagerly embraced genetically modified food.
GM cooking oil, papayas, tomatoes and potatoes are already widely available.
Insect-resistant rice and corn modified to help pigs absorb more nutrients were both recently approved by the government."
In other news an American Baseball Player, who had been injured in his long-standing career as a Pitcher for The Yankees, has been given a second-chance at continuing his dream. Apparently in a ground-breaking treatment, part of his fat was removed from his torso, spun through a Centrifuge to seperate the Stem Cells and injected back into his arm and shoulder so that damage sustained could begin to repair itself. Again, this is not made up but real authentic news.....again, I quote (this time from http://investorstemcell.com/forum/stemcell-news/1942.htm):
"Stem cells treatment on baseball playerColon owes resurgence to stem-cell treatment - CBSSports.com
By Evan Brunell
Somehow, Bartolo Colon has made himself relevant after missing a full season of baseball and injecting his fastball with life, with an average speed of 91.7 mph arresting a decline that started with the White Sox in 2009.
Despite being knocked around in his last start, Colon now has an impressive 3.86 ERA that is actually higher than it should be, as his 2.79 xFIP indicates. He's made four starts and three relief appearances and has bailed New York out of the Phil Hughes-sized hole the youngster left as he battles his own mysterious velocity problems.
Stem cells may be to thank. As Peter Griffin once said on Family Guy, "why are they not funding this!?"
Colon left baseball in '09 with pain in his right shoulder thanks to a rotator cuff tear among other issues and accepted an invitation in March 2010 from Drs. Sergio Guzman and Lionel Liriano to undergo a stem-cell transplant and later a "booster shot," as DiarioLibre.com writes.
"We did not want to do a trial on a young 23-24 year old because the effectiveness could be questioned due to his age," Guzman said, after their original goal of Pedro Martinez did not come to fruition. "We did it with a veteran and we hope that Felix Sanchez and other Dominican athletes that have suffered injuries will also submit to this treatment so that they can prove what can be done with stem cells."
Both bone marrow and fatty tissue (and there certainly was plenty of the latter for Colon) were taken out of his hip, put through a process, then inserted in the shoulder. He was then injected with a plasma shot, which other big-leaguers have undergone for treatment. Each procedure took no longer than 40 minutes with minimal recovery time, and doctors contend that this process is more economical than Tommy John surgery, which is more expensive and requires a long rehab period.
"We have not invented anything, nor have we done anything new. This is being done the world over", Guzman added. "We received some training overseas to handle this type of things. Harvard University donated the centrifuges. This is no invention. What we do is take a little bit of bone marrow and we put it into an affected area."
Prior to the procedure, the doctors received approval from MLB owners, lawyers and doctors before moving forward. While it's unlikely this surgery will supplant Tommy John surgery, it could be another medical advancement that could keep pitchers on the mound longer. Jake Peavy, pitching Wednesday night in his 2011 debut, is another pitcher who has undergone fairly new surgery.
The article, which was very fawning and pro-Dominican Republic to the point where you had to tune out the obvious bias (example: "... credit that goes to a team of surgeons made in Santiago de los Caballeros with the most advanced knowledge of present day medicine" -- we'll shortly learn that there's plenty of credit to go to a US doctor), made no mention of Dr. Joseph Purina of Florida who says he was part of the team that treated Colon.
“This is not hocus-pocus,” Purita told the New York Times. “This is the future of sports medicine, in particular. Here it is that I got a guy back playing baseball and throwing pitches at 95 miles an hour.”
Liriano says in the article that Purina was the one to provide the information and specialty to make the procedure possible, although Liriano had a major influence in selecting Colon and bringing the whole team of doctors together.
The Yankees were not aware of the procedure until just before the Times story ran, and notified baseball which is looking into it. Purina has previously used human growth hormone, banned by basbeall, in similar treatments but says he did not do so in Colon's case.*“I just won’t give it to [professional athletes],” Purita said. “I don’t need the stigma and that kind of reputation.”
Colon brushed off inquiries, saying "I don't know, I don't know," when asked about the procedure. Not much conclusion can be drawn from this as Colon speaks limited English.
Colon's agent, Mitch Frankel, for his part, believes the treatment helped Colon's resurgence, but wasn't the major part of it.
“The doctor feels that it definitely gave him a jump start to his improvement, although for me, personally, I don’t think Bartolo was focused on baseball mentally or physically for the last few years,” Frankel said. “I believe the problem was that and not his pitching. And I think once he made that determination, you can see the success.”
Up next could be a scientific study, because even with Colon's success, there isn't much information that can be extropolated from the procedure to date."
So you see, sometimes the truth REALLY is stranger than fiction! There are those who will be disturbed by stories like this in the Press. Personally I take all this as an encouragement that Science is not just about developing new and better ways to destroy each other but in moving forwards to better the Human Race as a whole.
They say that from little acorns, big Oak trees will grow.....who knows what other scientific advancements might develop in the next few years based on research and experiments being conducted right now? Remember both these stories when next you think perhaps that we are living in an age where Science and Technology have started to stand still. And remember, just because Scientists might play at being God, it doesn't make them Gods! What they do today, in the future could benefit us all.....
Sparky out! xxxx