Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

How far can genetic engineering influence those already living?

  1. Mar 18, 2008 #1


    User Avatar

    So it's easier to change a clump of cells and designer babies will be part of the future... but what about people living now? Will I be able to change my DNA 20 or 30 years from now?

    Thanks for any replies. :)
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 18, 2008 #2

    Andy Resnick

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

    The DNA in every dividing cell in your body is subject to change, but I don't think that's what you mean.

    Many cells in your body are differentiated- they have reached a terminal state, are executing a set genetic program and no longer reproduce (muscles, nerves, epithelial cells, endothelial cells). Other cells are undifferentiated- basal cells, stem cells in the marrow, etc. Those could be targeted, leading to new differentiated cells (epithelial cells come from basal cells, blood comes from the marrow, etc) with transgenes.
  4. Mar 18, 2008 #3
    There are lots of political forces here at work in what is 'moral' and 'immoral' in genetic engineering.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook