Tuesday, November 17, 2009

An African Solution

We each have a kit to do minor repairs and daily re-grow cells anew
But in chronic disease our capacity is limited to make whole organs renew
Starfish and salamanders do this far better,
                                     and re-grow organs and legs
And this they do with cells in the adult
                                      and not with fertilized eggs

Using them as a model perhaps we can learn what frogs and fishes do
And then we will do much more than now, and learn to structure rescue
of limbs that are damaged and organs very sick,
                                       and assist the body to heal
Degenerative diseases of body and brain
                      that make our worst fears become real

I believe the future should be crafted not willed by working together to keep our lives real
By moving from stepping stones to milestones - we can help each tissue to heal -
in real time, at the bedside or in a peri-operative setting,
                            in a rural community - in pervasive African heat
We can treat the person and not just the disease,
                             Talk to the locals, tune into their beat

“Local is lekker” and affordable too, it should not cost a fortune to use cells to renew
We could offer therapy in the grass-roots milieu, reach out to all and express Ubuntu
Treat weakened immunity and resistant infection -
                                   correlate treatment with social demand
Empower local communities to do much more,
                                       and plant hope in this ancient land

Forget the noise from the Hollow Men who travel life with no destination
Let us solve our problems and seek to create tissue regeneration
Then the mechanistic answers will fall into place
                                                      and not be purely didactic
In the fight for survival let’s build a life-saving bridge,
                                         A bridge between logic and magic.

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