Engineered Rabbit Penises Raises Human Hopes

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by iBlue, Nov 12, 2009.

  1. iBlue macrumors Core

    iBlue

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    #1
    http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/11/penis-engineering/

    Rabbits, eh? I'll leave the jokes and puns to you people.
     
  2. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

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    #2
    I think the humans would rather have engineered horse penises that rabbit penises. ;)
     
  3. arkitect macrumors 601

    arkitect

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  4. eastercat macrumors 68040

    eastercat

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    #4
    +1 Is there a category called "useless medical achievements" that we can put this under?
    If we're going to torture an animal (which I don't agree with), make it something worthwhile. For example, the cure for HIV/AIDS or cancer. Not for the development of splenda or a rabbit penis.
     
  5. IntheNet macrumors regular

    IntheNet

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    #5
    :rolleyes:

    Is that really something we are trying to encourage among humans?
     
  6. MBHockey macrumors 68040

    MBHockey

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    #6
    I'm sure you'd feel the same way if your junk got mangled in a car wreck and you couldn't ever use it again. Maybe think for more than one second before posting?
     
  7. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #7
    Seriously... this is like writing off all plastic surgery because plastic surgery is used for elective reasons -- Plastics is very involved in helping burn trauma patients, kids with craniofacial disorders, etc, etc. The articles themselves that ran on this yesterday (although not the one iBlue quoted) discuss applications for individuals with a variety of reproductive traumas or developmental abnormalities that would fall well outside any reasonable definition of frivolous surgery....

    Here are some of those excerpts...

    http://www.webmd.com/erectile-dysfu...progress-in-rebuilding-penile-erectile-tissue

    The science is also valuable for a broader range of development of replacement tissues, which it had already previously provided (this is the same research group).

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8347008.stm

    That kind of attitude is disturbing....
     
  8. eawmp1 macrumors 601

    eawmp1

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    #8
    How about a neo-vagina? I could see the quote:

    “Most control rabbits did not attempt copulation after introduction to their male partners,” wrote the researchers. “All rabbits with bioengineered neo-vaginas feigned headaches within one minute of introduction.”
     
  9. whooleytoo macrumors 603

    whooleytoo

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    #9
    This is great news for medicine, but it still creeps me out a little.

    No, not the thought of men with bio-engineered super-penises putting me to shame.. but the idea of growing human parts. We are the Borg.

    I did think it would be kinda cool to have built-in night vision eyes though, is that possible? And a larger bladder. Funny how one's priorities change as one goes through life...
     
  10. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #10
    Between you and e, you guys come up with the most interesting stories. :D

    Now the real question. If I get a rabbit penis, will it work like a rabbit. :p

    Anyhow, interesting article.
     
  11. tabasco70 macrumors 6502

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    #11
    Wait.. so how do engineering rabbit penises help humans?
     
  12. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #12
    Basically, we know that at least some body cells (e.g., stem cells) have the ability to form a variety of tissues under the right circumstances. However, the tissue doesn't always get repaired/reformed after an injury (limits in how much your nervous system can repair itself are an example, and so is this). If you can stimulate growth of the kind of tissue you want, then you can create implants that can reverse damage from other trauma. The mechanism by which the cells differentiate and form tissues, and the structure and composition of the tissues, is relatively consistent across mammals.

    So (1) if you can figure out how to do it with rabbit tissue, the mechanism may be fairly similar in human tissue and so you may unlock whatever is needed to regrow human tissue (e.g. extract cells from a man who had penile cancer and build new penile tissue that is a genetic match to his own tissue, and therefore very unlikely to be rejected on transplant). In support of this is the fact that the same team did the same thing with bladder tissue and are now able to make tissue that can be implanted in humans (see the BBC link I posted above).

    (2) You can also potentially create animal-based tissue that is not a perfect genetic match but is also likely to be accepted by the body, like we use pig valves in heart surgery and so on. That might not be rabbit tissue, but it might be closer to rabbit tissue and therefore easier to develop than having no way to stimulate the growth of this tissue in any case....
     
  13. iBlue thread starter macrumors Core

    iBlue

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    #13
    Thanks mkrishnan for putting it much better than I could have, and for the links and info.

    I am not a fan of animal experimentation* and aside from the lighthearted surface-level humour about these sorts of stories, this is interesting and promising stuff from a medical standpoint. (for reasons mkrishnan has already mentioned).

    *I am an avid supporter of cruelty-free products, among other things, but that is another topic.
     
  14. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #14
    Wirelessly posted (Nokia 5800 Tube XpressMusic : Mozilla/5.0 (SymbianOS/9.4; U; Series60/5.0 Nokia5800d-1/21.0.101; Profile/MIDP-2.1 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 ) AppleWebKit/413 (KHTML, like Gecko) Safari/413)

    Well there's no cruelty in giving a horny animal a bigger penis, so don't worry. ;)
     
  15. Vivid.Inferno macrumors 6502

    Vivid.Inferno

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    #15
    Haha +1
     
  16. fhqwhgads macrumors member

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    #16
    re: eastercat, I'd like to make another argument about "useless" medical discoveries. while a "cure" for cancer or HIV/AIDS seems like the most important medical discovery we could make, these diseases are not killing anywhere near as many people as, for example, complications of obesity and diabetes. it may not be as emotionally exciting as the diseases you mention, but seemingly meaningless scientific discoveries and developments that help to reduce caloric intake (like splenda) actually address (however indirectly) a much greater epidemic and killer than the sexy, research-funding-grabbing stuff like HIV.

    mrkrishnan made the point much more eloquently, but: research often has implications beyond the immediately obvious things, and furthermore, "difficult" diseases aren't always the most important ones.
     
  17. carlgo macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    #17
    I am not sure a natural life in the wild is so much better for rabbits, the first menu choice for every predator on earth. Being torn apart and eaten alive is how they meet their end, except for those swallowed whole by giant snakes.

    That being said, wait until the enhancement people market genuine cell-growth pills.
     
  18. william sire macrumors regular

    william sire

    #18
    I hope this technique is perfect soon. Ever since those “Extenz” commercials I have always dreamed of a way to realistically increase my endowment. Now not only can I get an increase but a replacement as well.
     

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