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Thread: Medical Guinea Pigs for Incurables

  1. #1

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    Medical Guinea Pigs for Incurables

    I hate the laws relating to testing new life saving drugs on human guinea pigs.

    There are actually very potential cures to AIDS and many varieties of cancer that have been discovered and shown great results on animals - while people are still dying everyday. Yet many laws state that these can't be tested on humans until ___insert 7 - 20 year period here___.

    I mean, I understand the risks, it could kill you, or even worse. However if I'm critical and have only a month or so, or perhaps days to go, I'd like take that gamble.

    Very possibly it will be of no use and I'll still die anyway, maybe more painfully and faster, but... at least I had the chance, and hopefully in my death it gave the researchers more information towards the search for a cure, at least then my death would have some meaning.

    On the brighter side, perhaps it will work, and I'll have an extra 30 years before I get splattered on the road by a car, and many others will benefit after me too instead of everyone for the next 7-20 years dying while this potential miracle cure is sitting in a lab curing puppies and mice.

    Human testing is considered immoral/unethical by many, but in the case of a person who IS going to die, has no hope and is in the very late stages of their incurable, I think it should be their right to be a guinea pig if they really want to be.

    5-15% of the people on the planet are immune to AIDS, though they are all (so far) white Europeans or of European descendance. One person has been documented as being cured of AIDS after a bone marrow transplant from one such European whose cells lack a receptor called CCR5 that HIV uses to enter immune cells.

    Read some more here:
    http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2012...ts-doctors-say

    So what is your personal opinion? Do you think it's the right of the government to take away your right to choose to be a guinea pig when you're on your death bed? I personally want the final choice to be mine, not theirs, if there's a very final choice of my life... I want it to be mine.

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    Yet many laws state that these can't be tested on humans until ___insert 7 - 20 year period here___.
    They are called trial periods for a reason. You cannot just give a drug to a person because it has shown promising results in a lab animal. Despite our genes and biochemistry being very close in the lab animals we use they are still not humans and what works in the animals may not have the same effect in humans hence the lengthy process of clinical trials. This is why phase trials and a certain set of protocols must be followed when new drugs are developed. The ramifications of not going through proper procedure is potential death of many, add onto that the legal uproar that would happen and you have yourself a long clinical trial stage to offset the issues.

    I mean, I understand the risks, it could kill you, or even worse. However if I'm critical and have only a month or so, or perhaps days to go, I'd like take that gamble.

    Very possibly it will be of no use and I'll still die anyway, maybe more painfully and faster, but... at least I had the chance, and hopefully in my death it gave the researchers more information towards the search for a cure, at least then my death would have some meaning.
    If it came to such a situation you can sign up for one of the clinical drug trials using those drugs in testing if you qualify as the right type of patient they are seeking to treat. It would be very unlikely you would be cured of whatever you have if it is still in phase trials but like you say if you pass away it will give researchers some information about how it worked in a human.

    One person has been documented as being cured of AIDS after a bone marrow transplant from one such European whose cells lack a receptor called CCR5 that HIV uses to enter immune cells.
    Many doctors are not in agreement that he is totally cured as there have been later tests showing viral signs are still present. If he is "cured" from HIV then comes the other issue of CCR5 which is a very rare mutation to begin with and the costs associated with giving each HIV patient that specific type of bone marrow transplant (not to mention the graft vs host response causing problems in the transplant itself). Realistically bone marrow transplants are not the most likely source of a cure but it could be a start...hence drug development and research.

    So what is your personal opinion? Do you think it's the right of the government to take away your right to choose to be a guinea pig when you're on your death bed? I personally want the final choice to be mine, not theirs, if there's a very final choice of my life... I want it to be mine.
    I am one of those people who has a University degree in the sciences and one day I would like to have a job working as one of those lab techs helping out in any way I can towards drug development so for me personally I am all for the clinical trials. To me sacrificing countless mice is far better than injecting humans and crossing our fingers it works. It can take awhile to develop things but in order to have them work in people we need to make sure that we are not causing more harm to begin with and thus the trials must be done. Your rights are not being taken away you can ask all you want for a spot in the clinical trials and you may be able to get that spot but you will not be given a random trial vial of a drug just because you asked for them...there is still the legal side that must be followed in order to prevent mass casualties. You may not feel there is an issue with taken an untested drug but your family may be right ticked off if you pass away because of it and that is part of why legally there are so many hurdles.

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  4. #3


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    Regardless of the facts, I believe that someone should always be able to sacrifice themselves for science. While I'm a big supporter of the individual and our importance and stuff, I cannot reason how if someone says they want to commit themselves to warring and killing other people it's ok, whereas a person willing to give themselves up for the welfare of millions is not permissible. Of course, there would have to be heavy guidelines for human tests, but nevertheless I think the opportunity should be there on a small scale.

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