Can a cell grow new mitochondria after they have been damaged by free radicals?

Steven B. Harris sbharris at
Fri Aug 7 18:47:31 EST 1998

In <35CB4E8A.19D8 at> Tom Matthews <tmatth at> writes: 

>No. Every different organism is truely unique from every other because
>of development from a DNA "recipe" (not a blueprint which specifies
>exact location of every molecule - as Steve Harris has pointed out).
>However, it is only for organisms with "significant" mental abilities
>that we normally make a distinction between organisms with the same
>or even of the same subspecies. 

   Well, we make a distinction between two cloned rats as being
different organisms.  The problems come in when the organisms are
connected, as in a clone of birch trees (all connected underground). 
Is that one organism with lots of "shoots" (aka trees), or is it lots
of different genetically identical organisms, interconnected.

    For humans, that problem never arrises.  Congenitally joined twins
are seen as two people.  Even when the joining proceeds to the point
that it superficially looks like one person with two heads (see that
recent remarkable life magazine about the 11 year set of twins in this

Some humans go further and count as
>unique, and individually precious, every living organism. Some go the
>other way, quite ignoring the value of individual humans in favor of
>species, self, or "germline" survival. To a certain extent, those
>against the extension of maximum human lifespan think in this latter
>manner. Strangely enough, most people appear to engage in both modes
>thought at the same time, applying the first to warm fuzzy animals and
>the second to horrid humans.

    Well, that's because they love animals and hate (adult) people. 
Like what Gordon Gekko said about Conservatives in the movie Wall
Street.  Except that more often, it's far more true of Liberals.

    More specifically, I think that a lot of this is driven by the
human female mother instinct in many an animal activist.  It gets
triggered a lot by animals, particular those with short mashed-in faces
(young animals, and adults like Pekinese, always a woman's dog).  Adult
humans get the shaft when it comes to animal rights problems, from
activists in this mode.

                                    Steve Harris, M.D.

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