Re: Possible Telomere Shortening in Clones

Anders Sandberg (
27 May 1999 17:00:23 +0200

Damien Broderick <> writes:

> Or - d'oh! - telomerase could be used to normalize the chromosomes before
> ignition and liftoff. Or an hTERT package (human telomerase reverse
> transcriptase, the catalytic component of telomerase) could be inveigled in
> to *ensure* that telomerase stays active and kicking in all cells in the
> new beastie, which might therefore become immortal at a blow - until it
> dies of cancer, of course. But we need to fix cancers anyway...
> Funny how these just-next-step extrapolations are always missing from news
> reports (and possibly from the mouths of cautious scientists).

Well, I guess the researchers are of the cautious type who first want to get control group data of the telomerase theory (like premature aging of Dolly and family) and then move on to fix it. If it turns out that the telomerase theory was wrong, they will instead look at what is new before trying to change it. My guess is that Geron et al will be there much more quickly, although in a less proper scientific way.

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!                  
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y