Monday, March 20, 2006

Homo Sapiens Sapiens vs Chimps

It’s official. Many have speculated that the DNA of humans and that of Chimpanzees are very similar. Now that both DNA sequences have been completed the factual evidence proves that all these theories were absolutely on the money. The DNA sequencing of humans and that of Chimps are 98% the same. What accounts for the major difference in our cognitive abilities is explained by the 2% difference.

The comparative studies have already started. A surprising preliminary conclusion is that the difference in the structure of the brain is minimal and cannot explain the rather substantial difference between the two primates. Further studies will reveal the area where we differ the most and whether any “genetic” engineering could benefit either of the two species.
The promise that has accompanied DNA sequencing as an answer to many of the questions about treatments of various diseases and even evolution has diminished .One reason for the current pessimism is what the courts have wrought. They have awarded patents on 20% of the human genes to various commercial enterprises. A product of nature, a gene, is now the private property of a corporate entity which can demand a huge payment for the use of a gene that it had nothing to do with its creation in the first place. But that is the law of the land until now. The Supreme Court is being asked to review the intellectual property rights tomorrow in a case that will have far reaching implications on
patenting genes and ideas. Will we ever stop this process of commodification?

9 comments:

marie said...

As long as the current capitalist system lives on, commodification will continue full force. Water and air(with the new trendy oxygen bars)are commodifyed, women can even sell their eggs for 9,000 dollars. We have already gone to far and it doesn't look like anythings going to change.

ghassan karam said...

Marie,
I happen to agree that commodity fetishism is the root of all evil in a manner of speaking. But if we must pass through the capitalist phase this suggests that it is a necessary evil!!!

Frank Marchese said...

Another form of halting humanities progress for personal gain, It sickens me, throw them in the gallows....

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