Transplanted body parts could save your eyesight, your smile, your ability to walk … but the question is from where they were taken. The Sydney Morning Herald peeks inside a booming new business:
“Two ribs, two Achilles heels, two elbows, two eardrums, two teeth, and so on” … On February 24, Ukrainian authorities made an alarming discovery: bones and other human tissues crammed into coolers in a grimy white minibus. Investigators grew even more intrigued when they found, amid the body parts, envelopes stuffed with cash and autopsy results written in English.
[It] was not the work of a serial killer but part of an international pipeline of ingredients for medical and dental products that are routinely implanted into people around the world … the remains of dead Ukrainians were destined for a factory in Germany belonging to the subsidiary of a US medical products company, Florida-based RTI Biologics.
RTI is one of a growing industry of companies that make profits by turning mortal remains into everything from dental implants to bladder slings to wrinkle cures.