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Fact or Fiction: Test your knowledge of what's really happening in genetic and reproductive technology in an interactive quiz.
Only one statement of each pair is correct. The false statement, however, is surprisingly close to the truth. Can you guess? Find out which is fact and which is fiction by mousing over A or B.
Fact or Fiction #1
Statement A:
A small nation in the Western hemisphere has contracted with a private biotechnology company to give the company access to its citizens' medical records. The nation's legislature made the deal on behalf of its constituents without requiring individualized informed consent from any.
Statement B:
After watching his mother deteriorate and die of Huntington's disease—a rare, devastating neurological disease that causes uncontrollable tremor and cognitive dysfunction—a 35-year-old man takes a genetic test to see if he carries the gene that causes it. But he is an air traffic controller in a medium-sized Midwestern city, and he loses his job when he tests positive. What his bosses don't know is that his two older brothers are also air traffic controllers.

Fact or Fiction #2
Statement A:
Researchers in the U.S. have discovered a cocktail of chemicals that can be used as artificial sperm. Although the experiments have only been carried out on mice, researchers believe the chemicals could also work in humans.
Statement B:
Scientists claim they can create designer sperm, making it easier to conduct genetic modification that affects future generations. Gene therapy has been conducted for the past decade on various cells in the body and, in the past year or two, has shown the first signs of success in creating children who are cancer resistant.

Fact or Fiction #3
Statement A:
The human genome is nearly identical to that of chimpanzees. Serious legal scholars, including Harvard law professors, have recently brought arguments to the U.S. Supreme Court that the great apes should be afforded something akin to "human rights."
Statement B:
It may be safer and easier to clone humans than sheep, new research contends, because people don't have a genetic defect implicated in producing oversized offspring, a problem found in sheep cloning. (Subsequent research has shown that humans may be extremely difficult—if not impossible—to clone.)

Fact or Fiction #4
Statement A:
Fertility doctors in the U.S. are able to create an artificial womb made from a woman's own endometrial cells. Designed to allow women with damaged or missing wombs to conceive children, the artificial womb is made of a matrix of the woman's own cells grown on biodegradeable material in the shape of a uterus. Embryos are "implanted" or attached to the artificial womb and transferred back into the woman. Embryos have survived for 30 days.
Statement B:
Researchers in Tokyo have created an artificial plastic womb in which a fetus grows in amniotic fluid and is connected to machines through its umbilical cord. Designed to help women with damaged or missing wombs, the artificial womb has already worked for goat fetuses and is projected to work for humans within a few years.

Fact or Fiction #5
Statement A:
A British company that uses DNA for paternity testing now offers a range of luxury items based on a person's unique DNA signature. Shoppers can order jewelry, rugs and engraved crystal designed in patterns based on their actual DNA sequence, for instance, a piece of jewelry with gemstones that mimic the order of amino acids in a particular region of their genome. The DNA patterns are reportedly precise enough to positively identify an individual.
Statement B:
The British government is considering a law that would criminalize the unauthorized use of a person's DNA. Testing a sample of DNA without permission would constitute stealing under the new law and would put routine forensic DNA testing on shaky legal ground. The proposed law grew out of, in part, a highly publicized case of a model who conducted DNA paternity testing on her famous ex-boyfriend without his consent.

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Which statement is fact?
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Which statement is fact?
A B
Which statement is fact?
A B
Which statement is fact?
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Which statement is fact?
A B