Since I've gone back to painting pictures the slow way I won't be able to post pictures of new ones very often. Oh well. In the meanwhile, here's another that lives in my portfolio and, just to keep things moderately interesting around here, a story that caught my attention this week:
A human spare parts kit may someday become a reality thanks to scientists who claim to have discovered a gene which could allow regrowing of damaged body parts. An international team, led by The Wistar Institute in Philadelphia, has found that if the p21 gene is switched off in mammals they can regrow body parts just like amphibians do.
Now the idea that scientists are chopping parts off small animals after making sure they don't have a particular gene just to see if they'll grow the bits back is kind of creepy but at the same time it is interesting. I guess I just have to hope the creatures are sedated, kept comfortable, well fed and have suitable entertainment available while they recover.
Mammals in general heal wounds by forming a scar but mice with no p21 grow a blastema which is similar to a group of embryonic stem cells. The ones with damaged ears regrew them. It's probably too soon to apply this technique to people and I personally have no idea of how particular genes can be turned off or on but I'll take their word for it.
Now I'm going to send the article to my dentist so we can discuss the third set of teeth I should be growing right about now.