Thursday, March 29, 2012

Say it Ain't so, Pepsico!


So, did you hear the one about the fetal tissue in your soda?

I first heard about this issue when my niece Kari contacted me. She knows I drink Diet Pepsi and wanted me to stop because a known ingredient in pepsi (aborted fetus kidneys).

WOAH!  WHAT?????


I did a quick research.  There are many, many internet sites addressing this issue. The ones I chose to use in the post is The Children of God For Life and  Forbes.com.  Going forward - references for Children of God will be in GREEN and Forbes will be in RED.

This is what I understand:

Senomyx, who has a contract with Pepsico, has been using new technology to create food additives.  They use HEK cells along with other receptors to allow them to test different additives to see whether they taste sweet, sour, spicy etc…  
"The fetus-derived cell line we're talking about was also created around the time I was born.  This is a 35-year-old technology. And it is widely used in cell biology.  And there is no way you'll consume them or that the cells would cause any health problems."
We won't be drinking aborted fetus kidneys after all.  

"Whether a cell line is taken from an abortion done today, yesterday, a year ago or 30 years ago makes no difference. It is still a human cell line, fetal in character with complete DNA intact from the original aborted child. Anything less would render it useless for human applications. It is also not an embryonic stem cell. It is fetal age kidney cells, that is, it was derived from an aborted baby beyond 8 weeks gestation. Morally, it makes no difference whether or not an abortion was done 30 years ago or today either.  Time does not diminish the original act of evil, nor does it lessen the culpability those who knowingly and willingly utilize the remains of aborted children for profit."
GROSS, but they do have a point. 
"The cells, called HEK 293 cells (that stands for human embryonic kidney) were taken from an aborted fetus in the 1970s in the Netherlands. Bits of chopped up DNA from the adenovirus, a virus that causes a pretty severe cold. The kidney cells were forced to take up bits of DNA using a technique invented in 1973 that used a calcium solution. The resulting cells don’t act much like human cells at all, but they are very easy to work with and have become workhorses of cellular biology. That’s why they’re used in the development of drugs and vaccines. (Here’s the original paper on the creation of the HEK cells. ) No new fetal tissue has been used to keep the cell culture going; the use of this cell line isn’t leading to new abortions."
From what I have gathered, the HEK 293 cells have been used to help find vaccines for the chicken pox, rubella and hepatitis A.  Also drugs for cystic fibrosis and rheumatoid arthritis. 
"To non-scientists this may sound a bit strange, but the reality is that HEK 293 cells are widely used in pharmaceutical research, helping scientists create vaccines as well as drugs like those for rheumatoid arthritis. The difference here is that Senomyx’s work for Pepsi is one of the first times the cells have (potentially) been used to create a food or beverage. (And it’s important to note that no part of a human kidney cell are ever a part of Senomyx’s taste enhancers or any finished food products.)"

STOP!  The Children of God for Life just admitted "NO part of a human kidney cell are ever a part of taste enhancers or any finished food product".  
"For Debi Vinnedge, who runs the anti-abortion group Children of God for Life, that doesn’t matter. “It’s the eeew factor. It strikes a really strong reaction in people,” she said in an interview. She points to the fact that one of Senomyx’s patents (not one for a product Pepsi would be using) refers to the way company scientists used mifepristone to get unstable HEK cells to respond — mifepristone being more commonly known as RU-486, the abortion pill."

After reading that The Children of God for Life admitted that human (aborted fetus' are considered human by this group) I feel as if I was being lead astray.  

Debi did get one thing right. It is the "eeew factor" that gets people to react.  In fact  when it comes down to it, this is basically a marketing scheme created by groups to scare people into passing a bill banning stem cell research.


 Nobody is putting "aborted fetuses" in soda.  "Synomix has isolated receptors found on cells that detect taste, and added them to the HEK cells. This allows them to test thousands of potential taste additives to see whether they might taste sweet or savory with a speed that would be impossible with human taste testers." That's all. They're not even IN the soda.


More information pertaining to The Children of God for Life click here

More information pertaining to Forbes and Biotech, you can read here.



My opinion pertaining to this post does not reflect my views on
 abortion or the right to choose.
 We all have different opinions.  I will respect yours if you kindly respect mine.

Derogatory comments will be deleted.

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7 pretty purplexing comments:

  1. Since I was a wee little girl and my parents introduced me to cola drinks, I hated them. So I do not drink them. I think creating MASS hysteria about something like this, though is a bit disingenuous. Makes me wonder if anybody owns stock and is trying to manipulate the market?

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  2. Thank you for the balanced, researched information with SOURCES!!!
    Personally, I think if we knew the processes and ingredients of most processed food, we would all be so "eeewed" out that we'd return to hunting-gathering!

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  3. I'm happy you decided to look into it! :)
    I still believe that it is in the drinks! Mom said that she is also happy that we had all of our shots before they did that!
    I hate pepsi and other sodas anyway, they never tasted right to me!

    Kari

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  4. This is a key factor research research research....don't believe everything you hear in passing...so drink up....I love diet coke until we met a couple dentist on a train from Florence to Pisa...by the time we got to Pisa I was dumping out my diet coke haven't had one since. But on that not I do have a regular coke now and again or ginger ale! Nothing diet...

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  5. Yep, definitely an eww factor. Snopes' take on it: http://www.snopes.com/politics/medical/pepsi.asp

    This is again why I am so into eating as little processed food as possible. Did you see that Starbucks came out announcing they use crushed bug shells in their strawberry frappuchino flavoring?

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  6. why all my 8 kids didn't get the chicken pox vaccine...there isn't an alternative like the MMR.

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  7. I RARELY drink diet colas or even regular soda.

    I also heard about the bugs in the Starbucks. Pink slime. All of it pretty unpalatable!

    And now the crazed Jet Blue pilot!!! What is our world coming to!!

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