A range of side effects has been reported in donors undergoing all of the above. Donation also makes demands on a donor's time, energy, and emotions. (Burfoot, 1999, p. 269)
For women who are receiving IVF, with their own Ova these side effects and ensuing risks are likely to be palatable, as the lasting effect if all goes well is a full term healthy child. For Ova donors the incentive of a pure, altruistic act might not be enough to allow her to make a discernible decision of sacrifice vs. reward, and this would likely be particularly true in the case of young women, who are less likely to have experience with infertility and who relatively recently experienced the hormonal turmoil of puberty, which is comparatively minor, as noted by some, to the artificial hormonal syncing and stimulating that occurs prior to Ovum retrieval. Ehrensaft stresses throughout her work that…… [Read More]
Embryo and Stem Cell Therapy
There are numerous studies which have investigated the potential benefits of embryonic stem cell therapy in restoring central nervous system function and other functions in humans with impaired cellular function.
In the article "Dopamine neurons derived from embryonic stem cells function in an animal model of Parkinson's disease" the author's objectives are to investigate stem cell therapy as a plausible treatment for Parkinson's disease using animal subjects. esearchers have widely held the belief that embryonic stem cell research would be useful in alleviating the symptoms of Parkinson's. The disease itself typically results according to the authors when midbrain neurons are lost, particularly those neurons that synthesize dopamine, and important neurotransmitter.
Embryonic stem cells can generate dopamine, thus the authors propose that they become the basis for cell therapies. The scope of the study is limited to examination of stem cell function and dopamine production in…… [Read More]
Within this illogical temporal continuum, though, exists a clearly defined 280-day gestation period in which humans develop from a zygote to fully formed animals capable of existing outside of the womb. In fact, the moral permissibility of abortion appears to exist precisely along this continuum, with the moral permissibility being graphed on the y axis and the numbers of days of gestation on the x axis. Taken to each of their irrational extremes, the twinkle in the parents' eyes could be said to be the beginning of conception, and the months could be extended to actual emancipation and formal recognition as an adult citizen in a given society and children could be "aborted" if they were flawed for whatever reason until this point was reached (this Spartans used this approach) or even well into adulthood (as the Nazis did). In the final analysis, an enlightened society will seek to provide…… [Read More]
Although these stem cells are only a few years old, they possess unlimited potential in terms of clinical research. Specifically, scientists are focusing their potential uses in transplant medicine in order to significantly reduce the level of both infections and overall organ rejection in organ transplant surgery.
The potential for using stem cells is of vast clinical and medical importance. These cells could potentially allow scientists to learn what occurs at the cellular and molecular levels of human development and use this information to identify certain molecular pathways that contribute to a variety of conditions. Furthermore, using these stem cells could also allow scientists to discover the genes that are triggered in response to certain cellular conditions that cause rapid, unchecked cell growth or irregular cellular patterns. Additionally, using stem cells to discover certain genetic conditions will lend immense amount of information to the scientists and afford researchers the opportunity…… [Read More]
Discussion Response: Abortion don't think abortion should be ethical dilemma for 'Americans,' but only for the American women contemplating an abortion. No woman (or at least, hardly any woman) considers having an abortion lightly. It is a personal, not a political decision. No government can make a decision that a woman must go through the pain, stress, and emotional and physical trauma of an unwanted pregnancy. But no father can, either. Could a father compel a woman he impregnated to risk her life, but not his, in a pregnancy (because all pregnancies carry some risk)? Could he force a woman to have an abortion she did not want, because he did not want to have a child? After birth, the parents have equal rights over the life of their child. But before birth, in a world where visibly unwed mothers are still prohibited in some areas from going to the…… [Read More]
History Of Embryology
The field of heredity includes three disciplines: embryology, regeneration, and genetics. Discussions of genetics necessarily entail a theory of development, and any theory of development must show how the eggs of different species develop in different ways. The hereditary theories of illiam Keith Brooks or August eismann did not distinguish separate genetic and embryological domains (Pereda and Motta). The developmental mechanics of His, Roux and Driesch likewise contained explicit genetic components whereby the hereditary determinants thought to reside either within the cytoplasm or inside the nucleus were seen to direct the processes of organ formation and cell differentiation.
The split between genetics and embryology emerged gradually, largely through the investigations of Thomas Hunt Morgan and his laboratory (Murillo-Gonzalez). hereas most American and German experimental embryologists followed Boveri in thinking that the nucleus was the site of the hereditary determinants, Morgan was convinced that these determinants lay in…… [Read More]
2). Stem cells "can theoretically differentiate into virtually any type of human cell, from blood cells to skin cells" (AAAS, 2009). Besides, "in the natural reproductive process, human eggs are often fertilized but fail to implant in the uterus" (AAAS, 2009).
From an ethical standpoint, proponents of stem cell research also argue that embryos are going to 'waste.' "Fertilization clinics routinely create more human embryos than are needed over the course of a fertility treatment, and are therefore left with excess embryos that are often simply discarded" (AAAS, 2009). Some individuals who are philosophically opposed to both abortion and artificial reproductive technology believe so long as such practices are legal the remaining embryos should be used to have at least some impact upon the improvement of human life. Other "opponents object to this argument, however, saying that such research would still condone the destruction of embryos" and encourage more 'waste,'…… [Read More]
3. Embryonic stem cells can be used to help human beings who suffer from debilitating diseases for which no other solution offers hope. For this reason alone, the research should be legal, considering that the embryos from which the stem cells are derived cannot be shown to possess any type of noticeable consciousness. There is no moral reason to favor the use of animals in medical research over the use of embryonic stem cells, considering that the former are fully developed creatures who clearly have the potential to feel pain, whereas the latter demonstrate little more than potentiality. Furthermore, most embryonic stem cells are culled from discarded tissues used for in vitro fertilization. If in vitro fertilization is legal then so too should be the proper use of the leftover cell mass.
Human Reproduction and Development. (2004). Retrieved 22 Sept 2005, from the Ipui Department of Biology eb…… [Read More]
Ethics of Embryo Design
Selecting the Perfect Baby
With all the recent advances in science and technology, there are new options for couples looking to get pregnant. This includes not only first time couples who have had trouble getting pregnant, but also couple looking to design their perfect baby using science to pick out the most desired genetic markers. This is the choice given to the Shannons, who are looking to have certain genetic markers in their next child to avoid a diagnosis of fanconi anemia that their older child has, as well as to provide a potential future match for a bone marrow donor for their current daughter, Sally.
Thus, the Shannons are looking into the pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) procedure. According to the research, this procedure is "a technique that enables people with a specific inherited condition in their family to avoid passing it on to their children.…… [Read More]
The majority of women can return to their normal routine the next day ("In Vitro Fertilization"). In most cases total bed rest is not required unless there is some risk associated with the development of OHSS ("In Vitro Fertilization").
The NIH further explains that women who utilize IVF must take the hormone progesterone for at least two months following the embryo transfer ("In Vitro Fertilization"). The hormone is taken through daily shots or pills. Progesterone is a naturaly produced hormone produced that assists in thickenign the lining of the uterus ("In Vitro Fertilization"). This thickening makes it easier for the embryo to implant to the wall of the uterus. If there is ot enough progesterone the woman will miscarry ("In Vitro Fertilization").
In additon to the risks associated with this type of reproductive technology, IVF is very expensive ("In Vitro Fertilization"). The NIH explains that many states require that insurance…… [Read More]
Chimpanzees and gorillas can be taught human sign language, and sign with one another even without humans present. (MMMC, 2002) They argue that to use intelligence and compassion as a sliding scale of the right to life would cause many humans to be justified out of existence.
However, even if one accepts that too many animals are experimented upon, and researchers should use other means, it is similarly hard to justify the elimination of all animal experimentation, altogether, as this would have meant the end of such recent drug developments in AIDS research, as well as more questionable animal tests, as for instance, the use of rabbits in cosmetic testing, for which there are acceptable substitutes that do not require animals.
Bayliss, Francoise. (2004) "Our Cells/Ourselves: The Ethics of Embryonic Stem Cell Research." Stem Cell Network. Retrieved 12 Jan 2004 at http://www.stemcellnetwork.ca/research/projects/project04.php
BBC News. (Feb 12, 2004)"Q &…… [Read More]
Gender of a Baby:
The issue on whether parents should be allowed to choose the sex of their baby has been a major controversial issue in the recent past that has attracted huge debates between proponents and opponents of such practice. This issue has received huge attention because of long-term use of Assisted eproductive Technology (AT) to help pregnant women in the United States and across the globe. This technology basically involves the transfer of fertilized human embryos into a woman's uterus through in vitro fertilization (IVF). Advances in Assisted eproductive Technology have contributed to various innovations such as Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis, which enables parents to choose prenatally the sex of their offspring (Bumgarner, 2007, p.1289). This technology enables parents to select the sex of their babies through the use of medical techniques. While it is considered as a major breakthrough in reproductive health, Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis has been surrounded…… [Read More]
Scientists have been aware of the existence of these stem cells for many years but have only recently realized the potential medical applications of the cells. More than a decade ago, scientists discovered that if the normal connections between the early cellular progeny of the fertilized egg were disrupted, the cells would fall apart into a single cell progeny that could be maintained in a culture. These dissociated cells, otherwise known as embryonic stem cell lines, continue to divide in culture, producing large numbers of cells at a fast pace. However, these early embryonic cells would lose the coordinated activity.
Scientists quickly discovered that these cells retain the ability to generate a great number of mature cell types in culture if they are provided with appropriate molecular signals (Reaves, 2001). Scientists have made significant progress in discovering these signals and are still working on it. hile it is a difficult…… [Read More]
Parents be Allowed to Choose their aby's Gender?
THE TWO SIDES
Should Parents be Allowed to Choose their aby's Gender?
A revolutionary lab technique, called sperm sorting, can now establish the gender of an offspring (Mail Online, 2013). The sperm carries the sex chromosome of a future child and sorting involves choosing the desired sex chromosome and then inseminating a woman with it. Gender can also be selected by abortion and before the embryonic stage through IVF or in vitro fertilization. Gender selection has been the subject of much debate because of its many consequences (Mail Online).
Artificial insemination consists of inserting concentrated sperm into the uterus to achieve a greater chance of fertilization (Stephens, 2011). Other methods are used to choose the gender of the baby. One is by using a dye on the desired gender from the sperm and then returning the dyed cell into womb. The Ericsson…… [Read More]
Stem Cell Ethics
Debating the Ethics of Stem Cells
The term 'stem cells' can mean different things to different people. For some, it conjures images of medical miracles providing solutions for heart disease, diabetes, and dementia. For others, it terrifies with a future filled with cloned humans. Still others cringe at the thought of mass producing cultured human embryos for the sole purpose of providing organs and tissues for a paying public. As with most complex issues, news media coverage tends to exaggerate easily understood concepts at the expense of the overall truth and the public accordingly remains ignorant of the subtleties surrounding this debate. This seems to add fuel the emergence of polarized camps and a shrinking of a common middle ground. To better define this middle ground, this essay will discuss both sides of this debate and argue instead that the vast majority of people would likely support…… [Read More]
Heather D's decision not to be tested for the Huntington's gene a wise one?
Heather D's decision not to be tested for Huntington's is unwise given that Heather is about to become a mother. If she develops the disease, this could significantly impair her ability to parent a child. She should make provisions for the child if she has the mutation and should discuss the situation with her husband. The genetic test for Huntington's is not a test that merely indicates a tendency or a likelihood of developing the debilitating condition -- because of the fairly narrow chromosomal area affected by the mutation, scientists can predict with a great degree of certainty who will or who will not develop the disorder (579).
Q2. Does the genetic counselor's suggestion provide a satisfactory solution to the problem?
No. Most individuals who are opposed to abortion also view the termination of fertilized embryos…… [Read More]
Albert Schweitzer once stated, "A man is truly ethical only when he obeys the compulsion to help all life which he is able to assist, and shrinks from injuring anything that lives" (n.d.). A pronouncement that in 1952 - when he won the Nobel Peace Prize for his philosophy of "Reverence for Life" -- may have had a different meaning than it does today. Nowadays, one lives in a world where artificial insemination is a normal practice, where in vitro fertilization is a common practice, where life has the potential to begin outside the womb in a test tube, where the very definition of "life" has become increasingly complex. Consequently, the issue of what is considered "ethical" and what is considered "unethical" with regards to human reproduction methods has also become more complicated. To understand the ethical minefield that is modern human reproduction, one should consider the situation of Nadya…… [Read More]
Studies have shown that the mean maternal age of motherhood has been increasing since 1980, which although may suit many modern careers and life styles, it puts women at a greater risk of declining fertility. The fundamental manifestation of ovarian aging is not just because of a decrease in the number of oocytes, but also because of a decline in its quality. Moreover, women of advanced maternal age are at a greater risk of developing aneuploidy in embryos. This contributes to their inability to bear a child by increasing both implantation loss and pregnancy failure. (Judy et al., 2012)
In Vitro Fertilization, IVF is one of the forms of assisted reproductive technology that enhances the chances of conception. In IVF, ovaries are stimulated to produce mature oocytes which are retrieved transvaginally under sonographic guidance. Oocyte retrieval is normally an outpatient procedure, performed with adequate analgesia. The sperm and…… [Read More]
Moral and Medical Dilemma
As the progression of medical technology has expanded humanity's ability to heal one another directly -- through the process of organ transplants, blood transfusions, and bone marrow exchanges -- several ethical dilemmas have surfaced which impact physicians, patients, and politicians alike. An individual's voluntary decision to donate his or her organs in the event of an unexpected death, and the government's methods for devising an equitable system of distribution for blood and organ transplants are just a few of the increasingly rancorous debates to become associated with cutting-edge medical techniques. Today, with the concept of stem-cell research offering a vast array of seemingly miraculous medical advances, the moral discussion has shifted to cases like that experienced by the Whitaker family, which has been forced to confront an agonizing choice involving their seriously ill son Charlie. In the end, although the Whitakers were able to develop a…… [Read More]
A fully functional tooth developed for the mouse as a result of the experiment. The authors proposed the use of such technology as a model for future organ replacement therapies. "The bioengineered tooth, which was erupted and occluded, had the correct tooth structure, hardness of mineralized tissues for mastication, and response to noxious stimulations such as mechanical stress and pain in cooperation with other oral and maxillofacial tissues" (Ikedaa 2009, p. 113475).
The ability to regenerate fully functional adult teeth could yield considerable improvement in the ease and lifestyle quality for individuals who would previously have to have dental implants.
The clinical implications for the success of the study extend far beyond that of the field of dentistry. Stem cell therapy has the potential to restore the partial loss of organ function of neural cells in patients with Parkinson's disease and to generate new organs for…… [Read More]
Obama endorsed an Illinois handgun ban while he was serving in the Illinois state legislature and also supports a ban on semi-automatic weapons. However, the current President professed his support for the Second Amendment, stating that he supports restrictions to keep guns out of the wrong hands, not a full prohibition. In Illinois he co-sponsored a 2000 to limit consumer purchases of firearms to one gun per month -- although he also supported 'conceal carry' laws for retired police officers ("Gun control," on the Issues, 2008).
The spike in gun sales has more to do with political posturing than reality: gun owners wish to demonstrate their opposition to Obama's system of values, as conceptualized in the red-blue divide that currently exists in the United States. In this polarized media positioning, Obama represents urban elitism and government control, despite his actual policies. The NRA and the gun industry has used this…… [Read More]
Additionally, the utilitarian position presents the advantage of objectively quantifying the interests of everyone affected by the decision, for the sole purpose of promoting common welfare. Thus, harvesting, fertilizing, genetically screening, implanting and researching human embryos at the risk of damaging or destroying them - is entirely justified from this perspective, and any progressive endeavor is encouraged.
Nevertheless, this approach might involuntarily discourage many IVF clients as it appears to be too rigid and provides them with little autonomy in making decisions regarding their own embryos. Interestingly, a utilitarian might not even support IVF treatment, due to the risks involved in the whole process - namely a large financial loss if the process should fail -, an therefore it is uncertain whether or not this infertility treatment would meet the Utilitarian requirements of avoiding pain and creating the most amount of happiness; there might be a lot of future un-happiness…… [Read More]
Ian Wimut and Keith Campell could effectively clone two sheeps named Megan and Morag in July 1995 from the differentiated emryo cells. (History of Cloning)
Dolly originated on July 5, 1996 as the first organism ever to e cloned from adult cells. Following the announcements for creation of Dolly y Ian Wilmut, an extensive deate on human cloning ethics emerged and that led President Clinton to propose for a five-year moratorium on federal as well as privately invested human cloning research on March 4, 1997. Richard Seed, a Havard graduate could announce on Decemer 5, 1997 aout his ojective of cloning a human eing prior to an of the process y enactment of the federal laws. Following the successful cloning of Dolly, Ian Wilmut and Keith Campell generated Polly, after cloning of a Poll Dorset lam from skill cells grown on a la and with its alteration genetically to incorporate…… [Read More]
isolate one issue that could be called the most controversial issue of the last decade, then it would have to be stem cell research. Federal funding for stem cell research has come under serious criticism on ethical grounds. Stem cell research has been the most explosive genetic research subject in recent years. It has occupied political, legal, ethical and social debates without any specific resolution to the question if stem cell research is ethical and if yes how and if no, why. The debate is grounded in the source of cells required for the research. Stem cells are obtained from two or three different sources like the umbilical cord and the very early stage embryo but the main contentious source is the early embryo which is rich in stem cells but has not yet turned into a person because at this stage it is simply a cyst called blastocyst. We…… [Read More]
Altering the Universe: From Gutenberg to Biotech
Revolution is in the air. hile the digital revolution is transforming our view of the universe, the biotech revolution has the potential to alter the universe itself. The parallel with the invention of the printing press and the Renaissance is clear. (Blake, 2001). "Gutenberg's and Caxton's inventions turned the world figuratively and intellectually upside down and heralded new patterns of human activity and organization that were inconceivable prior to the early 15th century." (Blake, 2001, pg. 9). One of the great achievements of that era was the quick adaptation of this communications revolution to every aspect of human life. Today, "we are at the beginning of a new Renaissance...." (Blake, 2001, pg. 9). One of the more controversial elements of this new Renaissance is stem cell research. There is perhaps no field fraught with more possibility along with questions of morality and medical…… [Read More]
For some the issue then arises when the pluripotent cells are removed from the blastocyst, as this very act negates the ability for the cell group to develop into a human being. "Note that the process of changing from totipotent to pluripotent to multipotent cells is not reversible -- that is, pluripotent stem cells do not produce totipotent stem cells, and multipotent stem cells do not produce pluripotent stem cells."
Borror, O'Rourke and Skirboll 54) Additionally, the proponents of stem cell work cite the pluripotent as incapable of producing a human being therefore not a destruction of life, hence leading to the Bush decision to ban the creation of new lines of stem cells, as it would require the destruction of further human totipotent cells.
Multipotent. The pluripotent stem cells undergo further specialization into multipotent stem cells, which are committed to giving rise to cells that have a particular function.…… [Read More]
bioethical concerns regarding the use of human stem cells involve their source and their research implications. Ethical issues surrounding the source of human embryonic stem cells used in research has historically evoked the most intense debates and other ethical issues have surfaced concerning the origin of other human embryonic stem cell -- like cells that have the capability to differentiate into all different types of human tissue.
From the time human embryonic stem cells were first isolated and cultured in 1998 human embryonic stem cell research has been generated vast controversy (Cohen, 2007). Much of the controversy is related to the historical public suspicion concerning the potential negative impact of scientific progress and research centered around genetic cloning. Human embryonic stem cell research has become equated with fears about human cloning, the modification of human biological material, and myths of regenerative immortality in wealthy people. All of these vague fears…… [Read More]
ithout a doubt, one of the most controversial topics of popular discourse is stem cell research. Indeed, one would be hard pressed to peruse the newspaper or magazine stand without encountering some reference to the global stem cell debate -- but what, exactly, are stem cells, and why are they so controversial?
Stem cells intended for use in human applications are harvested from humans, umbilical cords and embryos. The reason these cells are so valuable is because of their capability to produce or "become" other cell types -- for example, brain cells, heart cells, skin, etc. In short, these are "master cells," holding the ability to divide in cultures, and to be manipulated allowing it to transform into any type of cell. Of course, this is extremely important due to the fact that scientists can use this capability to either create organs (thereby helping to meet the tremendous…… [Read More]
Globalizing clinical research has reportedly proven to be one solution for America's pharmaceutical paradox. Doctors prescribe more than 10 prescriptions for the average American each year. Only one person in 350, however, will submit themselves to be a participant in experimental drug testing. On the other side of the globe, however a profusion of under-treated, poor, physician-trusting patients who live in Latin America, Eastern Europe, and Southeast Asia provide the rapid, positive results needed for new drugs to receive quick approval. One review noted that 99% of controlled trials published in China netted positive results upon the drug/treatment being investigated. (Shah 23) In Nigeria during 2002, thirty Nigerian families filed a class-action suit against Pfizer, who allegedly violated the Nuremberg Code in 1996 as they presided over an experiment on Nigerian children suffering with meningitis. esearchers reportedly forced a risky, unapproved, experiment on unsuspecting subjects who, as a…… [Read More]
(iii) in the United States, Brazil, Germany and France, humans have been receiving their own stem cells to re-grow heart muscle in the unforeseen incident of heart attack or injury. This was found to be successful in majority of the cases. (iv) in one more incident, the vision of 23 patients was restored after limbal adult stem cell transplants. This line of therapeutic care has assisted a lot of people who have been suffering from blindness for years together that includes the sufferers of mustard gas attacks in Iraqi. (Life Issues Institute, 2006) v) Crohn's disease patients have in fact been treated with stem cells evolved from their own blood. (vi) Among the 90% of the 19 patients having several autoimmune disorders like systemic lupus has been on the path to recovery following treatment with their own blood stem cells. (vii) a research of Parkinson's disease displayed an average improvement…… [Read More]
Moral and Legal Questions of Stem Cell Research
Stem cell research is an experimental, and research-based study as to methods of repairing the human body. y introducing stem cells into a damaged, or degenerating area of the body, the medical profession hopes to prompt the body to regrow healthy tissue, and repair the damage. Degenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's disease, or macular degeneration of a patient's eye retina are conditions in which the healthy tissues cease to function properly. There is no overt damage. There is not a disease which has physically destroyed the affected body part. ut for varying reasons, such as old age, wear and tear, or reasons medical science does not yet understand, the affected body part simply ceases to function properly. Stem cells are the type of cells, which are more numerous in, but not limited to, human embryos. They are the building blocks of the…… [Read More]
Human Genome, Stem Cells, & Reparations
Stems Cells are the source of all body tissues. Growth and development of the human body arises from the stem cell and is maintained by it. Although all cells can divide or copy themselves, stem cells are unique because they can replicate and create all other types of cells. This ability of the stem cell to develop into any of the 220 cell types that make up the human body makes it a powerful tool for biological research and medicine. Scientists believe that stem cell research has the potential of leading to previously incurable diseases.
How are Stem Cells Formed?
When a sperm cell fertilizes an egg, a zygote (fertilized egg) is formed. The zygote divides itself almost immediately to form stem cells. These unspecialized stem cells have the ability to replicate (to form other stem cells) and to make all other specialized cells…… [Read More]
The medical term assigned to this phenomenon is called 'microchimerism'. In the case of more children being born, this can lead to some of the older child's DNA to be transferred from the mother to the younger child's fetus.
In an attempt to study microchimerism, J. Lee Nelson, an immunologist from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer esearch Center in Seattle conducted an experiment with assistance from his colleague Natalie. Blood samples from 32 healthy women revealed over 20% of them to bear white blood cells which belonged to their mother. It is hard to understand how these cells reside there instead of being rejected immediately by the host body. One assumption stated by Nelson indicates this to be a way to enhance the mother's immunity to prepare for the development of the fetus which can be deemed as a foreign organ on its own. They might even actively participate in the…… [Read More]
Edward and Susan: My Sister's Keeper ethical dilemma
The film My Sister's Keeper is an emotionally wrought dramatization of what is a very real medical conundrum for some parents today, given advances in medical technology. The drama revolves around the question of the creation of a 'savior sibling,' genetically designed from birth to help her existing sibling survive (My Sister's Keeper: Science Background Talk, n.d., SCU). In the parallel case of Edward and Susan, a couple with a daughter with Acute Childhood Lymphoid Leukemia, many of the objections that people have raised to IV will not likely be persuasive to them: they have already used the technology to have their first child. Additionally, the sibling would be a wanted child, given the couple had always wanted a bigger family, but had held off because of fears of passing on a genetic disorder. The main ethical question for the…… [Read More]
Going back further, the same religious principals also inspired opposition to organ transplants and blood transfusions; before that, the Catholic Church strictly forbade any forensic scientific research, necessitating the need to dissect cadavers for medical education entirely in secret (Levine, 2008).
Just as the news media are partially at fault today for their failure to distinguish legitimate concerns from ludicrous fears in connection with the ongoing political debate over American healthcare, they are equally responsible for allowing unfounded fears of "human cloning" in connection with the beneficial uses of stem cell science. Specifically, the main source of secular opposition to stem cell research is attributable to unnecessary fears of rampant misuse of human cloning technology to clone human beings. While human cloning is hypothetically possible, no responsible scientific researcher would ever misuse current biomedical technology in that fashion. The complexities of cloning entire organisms have been well documented in animal…… [Read More]
stem cells. It will consider the current moral discourse on the issue of stem cells and at the same time look at the basics or the foundation of stem cells themselves. How these cells can be utilized to conduct studies in cloning will be dwelt upon as well.
The pertinent issue on the floor of the U.S. congress in the deliberations on stem cell studies on humans is how to handle embryonic stem cell research (ESR), a kind of research that may generate crucial lifesaving therapies, which demands the damaging of embryos. Present national government regulations and policy documents tackle this issue basically via the limits on federal funding allocated to ESR (Aylesworth, 2010). The U.S. Department of Human Health Services is not permitted to spend any money on making human embryos for studies whereby the embryos will be damaged, thrown away, or intentionally be exposed to risks such as…… [Read More]
Condic, M.L. (2007, January). What We Know about Embryonic Stem Cells. First Things: A Monthly Journal of eligion and Public Life 25+.
Patel, K., & ushefsky, M. (2005). President Bush and Stem Cell Policy: The Politics of Policy Making. White House Studies, 5(1), 37+.
Pickrell, J. (2006, September). "Instant Expert: Stem Cells." NewScientist.com news service. etrieved on March 4, 2007 at http://www.newscientist.com/channel/sex/stem-cells/dn9982
Shapiro, .S. (2006). Bioethics and the Stem Cell esearch Debate. Social Education, 70(4), 203+.
Stem Cell Basics." (2006). Stem Cell Information from the National Institute of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. etrieved on March 4, 2007 at http://stemcells.nih.gov/info/basics/
Wagner, C.G. (2007, January/February). Values Conflicts in Stem-Cell esearch: Governments Struggle with Bioethical Issues. The Futurist, 41, 8+.
Precursor cells are also known as pluripotent cells, i.e., having the ability to replicate (to form other stem cells) and to make all other specialized cells that make…… [Read More]
S. Congress that the prospects of stem cell research were so vast that it could touch all the realm of medicine (Connor 2000). An unlimited source of embryonic stem cells will solve the problem of shortage of transplants. Embryonic stem cells will save lives by curing generative diseases of the brain, hepatitis, diabetes, leukemia, rheumatoid arthritis, muscular dystrophy and cystic fibrosis and diseases of the heart and kidneys. ut current laws restrict the use of stems cells on embryos less than 14 days old and for correcting fertility, reproduction or congenital disorders. The restriction is grounded in the belief that the embryo is a potential human being from the moment of conception. It thus possesses a soul and a dignity just like any other viable person (Connor). Previous scientific research presented evidence that genetically engineering cells could partly repair a defective immune system (Travis 2002). Two new studies bolstered this…… [Read More]
In the past few decades an argument has raged across America over the issue of abortion. My personal opinion on this subject is that abortion should not be legal. I believe that because an embryo, and later a fetus, is a human life form that is separate and distinct from its parents, and has the potential to become something great, that people should follow the "Golden ule" and treat others, including embryos, only as they would like to be treated; and this would mean not ending their life. Therefore, in the debate over abortion, I am on the "Pro-Life" side.
While many abortion proponents concentrate their arguments on the mother and her rights, they often forget that there is another person involved, and it is a distinct and individual life form. Most embryology texts indicate that the life of a human being "begins with complete fertilization, which yields…… [Read More]
ith the production of Dolly, we also entered a vast technological frontier of possibilities. The cloned sheep "was born after nuclear transfer from a mammary gland cell, the first mammal to develop from a cell derived from adult tissue." Taking a cell containing 98 per cent of the DNA, or its genetic blueprint, from the udder of a six-year-old adult sheep, they fused it to the egg of another sheep to produce a lamb that is virtually an exact copy." (Marsh, 1) Equally as groundbreaking as the creation of the world's first clone was the implication of its process, which indicated that there is a way to employ adult cells, already differentiated and specialized to their own organic functions, in order to fabricate new, un-differentiated genetic material. For researchers battling such diseases as Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and paralysis all around the world, such a possibility began to hint at countless opportunities…… [Read More]
This controversial decision drew all kinds of reactions from different groups on each side of the issue. Some adversaries of hESC research expressed admiration for the decision limiting research to existing cell lines, while others said that no research should be allowed under any circumstances. Advocates of hESC research, meanwhile, generally praised the president for allowing some research to go forward, but criticized the restriction to existing cell lines as too strict, questioning whether enough research would be allowed.
Current U.S. Stem Cell Policy under President Obama
The March 9, 2009 EO changes the way the National Institutes of Health (NIH) can support and conduct human stem cell research. The Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the NIH Director, is required to review existing NIH and other widely-recognized guidelines on human stem cell research and issue new NIH guidance within 120 days of the date of the EO…… [Read More]
tenet of the American Nurses Association Code of Ethics states, "the nurse provides services with respect for human dignity and the uniqueness of the client, unrestricted by considerations of social or economic status, personal attributes, or the nature of health problems." (Howard University) That seemingly simple statement puts nurses as well as other medical professionals in an ethical quandary when they consider the issue of in-vitro fertilization that results in a pregnancy with multiple fetuses. Even the presence of twins instead of a singleton presents extra risks for both mother and babies, and those risks rise dramatically as the numbers of babies increase. However, in the recent past, fertility experts have felt it necessary to implant multiple fertilized eggs because of a low success rate (Johnson, 1999).
One option when a multiple pregnancy presents clear risks, especially to the likely viability of all babies, is selective reduction. In selective reduction,…… [Read More]
Do patients understand what it means to donate tissue to science? Not only that, but use of EG cells confuses stem cell research with the debate over abortion, bring up the risk of biasing emotions (McDonald 7).
So, while stem cell research is an exciting new field that holds much promise, ethical problems arise to delay research, discovery of benefits or dangers, and involve many who have no knowledge of the complexities of the field. Though controversies usually accompany new discoveries in science, this biotechnological process involves manipulating the basis of life itself in embryonic stem cells. But the field is rapidly changing. hat is true today may be outmoded tomorrow. A neutral substitute for stem cells may be discovered that will prove to be the answer to these ethical questions.
Ethics Committee of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. "Financial incentives in recruitment of oocyte donors." Fertil…… [Read More]
This bill was sent to the U.S. Senate and set for vote mirroring a bill previously passed by the House during the Summer of 2003 which failed to pass the Senate because of vehement disagreement that was even "within the parties over the prohibition of therapeutic cloning.(National Legislation Concerning Human and Reproductive Cloning, 2004; paraphrased) As of the date of the report on legislation eight U.S. states had passed laws that explicitly prohibited reproductive cloning using human embryos and another five U.S. states have placed a prohibition on cloning for any purpose whatsoever with 22 other U.S. states introducing bills outlawing the reproductive cloning of humans. (Ibid; paraphrased) Patenting laws for genetics allow inventors to patent genetics but only specific genetic factors may be patented and inventors are required to:
1) Identify novel genetic sequences;
2) Specify the sequence's product, 3) Specify how the product functions in nature --i.e. its…… [Read More]
Stem cells are a hot topic for the media today because our understanding of them has potential for incredible scientific advances in the field of biotechnology, yet we struggle because there are questions of morality raised by the methods by which they might be used. While in centuries past, it was commonly accepted within the scientific community to vivisect the mentally insane or criminally convicted for the purpose of scientific knowledge, today religious groups are concerned about the fate of single stem cells being used in experiments. Stem cells have paved the way to cloning and bioengineering of humans, allowing scientists to "bring... A sperm and ovum together to create an embryo, harvesting the cells, and then discarding the embryo." (Celia) The concern for many people is that working with embryonic stem cells especially may somehow he breaching the rights of people and taking science to a point where it…… [Read More]
But if you want a baby badly enough, you will do it" (The Women's Health Council). Women are subjected to a wide range of drugs which have harmful side effects. Some drugs induced to facilitate ovulation have also caused infertility in the male child. When women are put through the consumption of such drugs, the chances of multiple births increases, thus the woman gives birth to twins, triplets or even more.
In 2000, 53% of infants born through AT were multiple births, compared to 3% of births in the general population. The twin rate was 22 times higher than the general population; the triplet and higher multiples rate was 50 times higher. Their higher risk for birth defects and low birth weight add to already over-burdened health care costs." (Marie Anderson and John Bruchalski)
Many couples cannot afford to bring up more than one child at a time and hence…… [Read More]
Timing and Principle Characteristics of Developing Female and Male Germ Cells From Differentiation in Early Embryo to Point of Fertilization
Principle Characteristics Male and Female Germ Cells
The female and male germ cells are reproductive cells that fuse with one another during fertilization (Encarta, 2005; Burfoot, 1999). Each possesses unique characteristics and molecular structure during the prefertilization phase of development and post fertilization. These characteristics are influenced by the production of various hormones in the male and female body.
Fertilization occurs when the materials from two gametes come together to form an embryo. The female gamete is often referred to as the egg or female germ cell whereas the male gamete is often referred to as sperm or the male germ cells (Encarta, 2005; Burfoot, 1999). Developing female germ cells are generally large and contain nutrient reserves including what is referred to as the egg 'yolk' or sometimes white and…… [Read More]
Similarly, this type of non-invasive acoustic and vibrational monitoring has been used by doctors to get a better assessment of in vivo hip conditions so that they can better comprehend things like total hip arthroplasty (Glaser et al., 2010).
"Acoustic emissions are elastic waves generated by a rapid release of energy at a localized source. They are produced by events such as particle impact, gas evolution, boiling, phase transitions, precipitation. Some processes produce emissions that can be heard. A lot more emit either outside the audible frequency or at too low an intensity to be heard (McLenna, 1995, p.338). Using non-intrusive acoustic monitoring is definitely a way to monitor an entire structure continuously and effectively (Wu & Abe, 2003). Acoustic signal-based monitoring can assess individual entities and mechanisms or total structures, pinpointing abnormalities, failures or red flags which need attention (Wu & Abe, 2003). It provides experts with…… [Read More]
Animal Production: Biotechnology
Biotechnology has achieved some dramatic advances in recent years in both crop and livestock production. Food production results from the interaction of humans, animals, land and water; to help speed up this process, make it safer and more efficient, biotechnology has been involved. These include transferring a specific gene from one species to another to create a transgenic organism; the production of genetically uniform plants and animals (clones); and the fusing of different types of cells to produce beneficial medical products such as monoclonal antibodies. Today, biotechnology has a number of applications in livestock production. It is being used to hasten animal growth, enhance reproductive capacity, improve animal health and develop new animal products. In 1999, FFTC carried out a regional survey to draw up an inventory of technologies and products which have been developed using biotechnology for livestock production. Some of these are now being applied…… [Read More]
Dimitrios Karussis and Ibrahim Kassis, in the article, "Use of Stem Cells for Treatment of Multiple Sclerosis," conclude,
"In the current review, the various types of stem cells, which were mainly studied in animal models, will be reviewed as a potential therapeutic approach for MS. The main and common mechanisms of action of all stem cells include induction of neuroregeneration and remyelination through the activation of resident stem cells, or production of new CNS cell lineage progenitors, paralleled by local and systemic immunomodulating effects" (Karussis & Kassis, 2007, Conclusion ¶).
The other diseases that are showing promise in treatments resulting from stem cells usage includes: as cancer, diabetes, osteopetrosis, rheumatoid arthritis, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, spinal cord injuries, heart disease, immune system disorders, blood disorders; the list goes on (Diseases Treated by Cord lood, 2010).
Stem cells are a valuable weapon in the future treatment of disease and in…… [Read More]
Cautiousness towards environmental contaminants in fish and seafood has led pregnant women to limit or eliminate fish and seafood from their diet. The Food and Drug Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency addressed the problem by advising the women to avoid large ocean fish, such as shark, swordfish, king mackerel and fish because of their higher mercury content. According to the agencies, pregnant women may safely consume up to 12 ounces of shellfish or smaller ocean and farm-raised fish, such as salmon and canned light tuna, per week. DHA-enriched eggs, which provide up to 150 mg DHA per egg, are now available for these mothers' diet. DHA supplements may also be taken but sparingly because of their fish oil content (Steele).
Caution Over Vitamin A Supplements
According to the Institute of Medicine, pregnant women do not need vitamin-mineral supplements unless there is a risk for nutritional deficiency (Nutrition Research Newsletter,…… [Read More]
"It is not just a Catholic and Protestant Debate"(13).
Some Catholic statements, like the 1968 papal encyclical Humanae Vitae, condemn the practice on grounds of the created order, which is thought to be structured in such a way that all sexual expression must be open to procreation. Other statements, notably various declarations issued from 1969 to 1989 by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops (NCCB) in the U.S. appeal instead to the nature of the human person and the idea that life begins at conception. Abortion must be rejected, such statements argue, because it terminates a human life. Yet a third subgroup can be identified. Statements like the NCCB's well-known 1983 pastoral on peace and the Catholic bishops of France's 1979 declaration do not emphasize the doctrines of creation and human persons but argue against abortion by granting priority to the gospel.
In addition, in the Protestant Church, several statements…… [Read More]
According to Ayn and, rights do not relate to a prospective human being, but only to an actual human being. A child cannot attain any right until it is born. It is only on this criterion that we can safeguard the political right of the women to do what she opts for in this matter. No other person including even her husband has the right to influence as to what she may act in respect of her own body. That is a basic principle of right. (Peikoff, 2003)
While many of the endeavors to further confine the abortion rights are justified on the basis of advances being made in fetal medicine, actually they are motivated by a challenge to the right of women to exert regulation over reproduction. eproduction is viewed as a primary activity of the family, a crucial structure that forms society. If women can exercise full option…… [Read More]
There are too many factors that cannot be controlled. Children may develop inferiority feelings regarding their own specialness due to the choices of their parents. Many people who may be able to make contributions to society will more than likely be aborted. There is also the possibility that just because someone has a genetic trait for a malady, they may not even manifest such a condition. Additionally, the lack of clear boundaries in this field leaves the potential for catastrophes, such as that which happened during orld ar II.
Abraham, Carolyn. "Unnatural Selection: Is Evolving Reproductive Technology Ushering in a New Age of Eugenics?" The Globe and Mail, 7 January 2012.
Appel, Jacob M. "Toward an Ethical Eugenics: The Case for Mandatory Preimplantation Genetic Selection." JONA's Healthcare Law, Ethics, and Regulation 14:1, 2012, 7-14.
Gattaca. Dir. Andre Niccol. Perf. Ethan Hawke, Uma Thurman, Jude Law. Columbia, 1997. Film.…… [Read More]
Personhood Amendment in Mississippi
Judith Jarvis Thomson's essay "A Defense of Abortion" and the proposed Mississippi Constitutional Amendment
In Mississippi, a bill that advocated an extreme position on abortion rights was submitted to voters. It was ultimately rejected, despite the fact that Mississippi is a very conservative state. The constitutional amendment would have declared a fertilized human egg to be a legal person, not only equating abortion with murder under the law, but also making certain forms of birth control illegal (Eckholm 2011). It would have made using birth control, including IUDs and morning-after pills, which operate by detaching the fertilized embryo from the mother's womb, a legal for of murder.
Previous regulations of abortion placed restrictions upon when and where women could get abortions, or created parental consent laws. This amendment simply stated when life began: at fertilization. Even embryos in fertility clinics could be destroyed, according to the…… [Read More]
Ethics of Human Cloning
In 1971, Nobel Prize winning-scientist James atson wrote an article warning about the growing possibility of a "clonal man." Because of both the moral and social dangers cloning posed to humankind, atson called for a worldwide ban on any research leading to cloning technology (atson 8).
Until then, cloning had been largely relegated to the realm of science fiction. Scientific research concerning cloning and in vitro fertilization was obtuse and technical, and hardly written about in the news. atson, however, was a highly-respected scientist, a Harvard professor famous for his discovery of the double helix structure of the DNA. The article he wrote sparked an intense debate over cloning, a debate that was renewed with the 1996 birth of Dolly the lamb, the first cloned mammal.
The argument no longer centers on whether cloning is possible, but on whether cloning is ethical. This paper examines the…… [Read More]
Teratogens and Fetal Development
Teratogens can be described as agents that contribute to fetal injury and birth defects or an abnormality because of fetal exposure during pregnancy. Some of these agents that lead to fetal injury or birth defects include chemicals, environmental contaminants, infections, and drugs. These agents tend to result in such abnormality in fetal development when a woman is exposed to them during the term of the pregnancy. The agents are always discovered following an increased prevalence of a specific birth defect or abnormality. Pregnant women are increasingly susceptible to teratogens since these agents can be found in various settings at home in the working environment. Notably, the effect of the agents on fetal development is dependent on the kind of agent, duration, and extent of the exposure. Generally, teratogens and fetal development can be about legal and/or illegal drugs and the effects on the fetus while in…… [Read More]
While freedom of religion absolutely guarantees the right to refrain from choosing to submit to stem cell-based treatment, the same freedoms and the concept of separation of church and state absolutely preclude religious beliefs about when life "begins" (or about anything else) from dictating laws that affect other people who may not share those particular beliefs (Dershowitz, 2002).
Beneficence and Non-malfeasance
Certainly, both the concept of beneficence and non-malfeasance absolutely prohibit the use of fetal stem cells from any fetus that is sufficiently developed to be considered a "person" as well as from any fetus that is sufficiently developed to sense pain. Medical authorities may debate where the exact point is where "personhood" first becomes an issue, but in principle, that characterization must be a function of objective criteria and never subjective beliefs of laypeople, especially based in religion (Dershowitz, 2002).
Both beneficence and the duty to avoid malfeasance prohibit…… [Read More]
But "few states with mandatory insurance for IVF still require couples to undergo three cycles of ovulation induction and artificial insemination before IVF" thus encouraging the use of a technology more likely to result in multiple births (Roan, 2007, p.4).
hen contemplating the use of fertility drugs or IVF, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology advocates discussing the possibility of selective reduction and the patient's comfort level with this practice before any procedures are performed. However, its guidelines, are not binding. For example, "the U.S. fertility industry has guidelines on how many embryos doctors can implant, with the number varying by age and other factors. The guidelines call for no more than one or two for a generally healthy woman under 35, and no more than three to five, depending on the embryos' maturity, for women over 40" (atkins & Neergaard 2008). Eight embryos would be "well beyond" these…… [Read More]
On the other hand however, it gives rise to an exclusive attitude and a multiple layer style of development and economic evolution because there will always be countries that fail to keep up with innovative technology, high tech research and revolutionary concepts which stand at the basis of today's creative industries. This is why the population in least developed countries does not consider globalization as being benefic for the improvement in their standard of living.
All in all, it can be said that the success and nature of a process is totally dependent of the perspective which is under analysis. Concerning stem cell research, arguments coming from the medical point-of-view favor the continuing of the research while those embracing the religious and ethical perspective strongly disagree. Similarly, depending on the point-of-view, globalization can be seen as both an inclusive and an exclusive process.
Holland, Suzanne, Karen Lebacqz, and Laurie…… [Read More]