Scientists have grown human cells in monkey eggs for the first time. The success of this experiment marks a major achievement in medical science. If successful, it will usher in a new era in the history of medical science wherein the study of disease and its cure is no longer held back by the limits of science. This will also be a boon to those families suffering from a loved one’s cancer.
Earlier, scientist experimented on human cells in culture, but they failed to get them to develop into tumors. To overcome this hurdle, the scientists took the step of implanting human cancer cells into the monkey’s abdominal cavity. Surprisingly, the monkey showed no resistance towards this treatment. After surviving for more than a month without exhibiting any symptoms, the scientist ended the experiment. It was then decided to keep the same cells in an egg and let them hatch.
Scientists now plan to implant individual cancer cells grown in the monkey into a human patient. Human cells grown in this manner are expected to be able to grow into tumors in a few months. After successful implanting, the scientist will be able to show similar signs in the patient. However, this experiment has another level to it. Since this cell-culturing technique has not been used before, there are many questions that surround it.
Scientists still do not know if the cells being grown will cause any problems to humans or whether these monkeys would suffer any long term damage. It is also not clear if the method they use is scientifically sound. The scientists involved with the project claim that their research is valid although many doubts remain in the minds of many.
Since this is only a small-scale experiment, few details about the process have been released to the public. However, many scientists are eager to find out more about it and the implications it could have for human medical science. If the scientists are able to show that human cells can be grown in monkey eggs, the implications will be enormous. Not only will it provide scientists with a means of testing cures for various diseases, they could also learn how monkeys act when it comes to fighting off cancerous tumors.
However, critics of this experiment are quick to point out various flaws in the study. Scientists argue that the procedure they used was not adequate to show that human cells could indeed be successfully grown in an in vitro manner. They also point out that the procedure took place at an experimental laboratory, which meant that the quality of the cells was not as high as it should be for human purposes. Still, other scientists are not convinced that this is really the best way to test the effects of genes on human disease. One of the biggest questions that scientists have is how this will affect the future of human health research.