when they say...
"This would be preferable to removing a duff brain and growing a new one, as happens when a planarian worm's head is cut off."
I'm sure we can all think of a few people for which this would be the best route from A to B.
British boffins say they have identified the key "smed-prop" gene which allows Planarian flatworms to regenerate any part of their body following an injury - even their brains. The discovery is seen as a step towards regeneration therapy for humans in future. Top bio-boffin Dr Aziz Aboobaker and grad student Daniel Felix, who …
Given the level of brain damage in politicians, I'm willing to forgo further testing and clinical trials to get this implemented in D.C. immediately. Ideally, it should be started on the extreme wings of each party and work toward the middle. Once the House has been passed, it will go on to resolve the Senate. If it works in those two places it should work in any government suffering from craniorectal brain disease.
Yes, it's very likely that simply sticking this gene into a higher organism will just kill it with cancer, assuming it does anything at all. There's decades worth of research to do before anything useful can come out of this. Which, of course, is why said research should get started ASAP! :)
Greetings and Salutations.
There is a classic book here in the USA, titled "Animals without Backbones" (and no it does NOT mention politicians anywhere in its several hundred pages), that has a section on the Planaria worm. There are a number of amazing photos, including one where the researcher split the head in half, along the central line of the body, then, after those heads regenerated, continued the process until they ended up with a worm with about 16 heads. The "expression" on a Planaria worm is puzzled at best, and with 16 heads it made it quite amusing.
Although it was published in 1938, it is still considered a great reference and textbook. By the by, it was also what my parents would read to me when I was growing up to put me to sleep...and THAT might explain a number of things (*smile*).
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