Somatic cells can renew themselves, but they are limited to cell types from the organ that the cell was originally from.
Nissim Benvenisty, Wikimedia Commons What if I told you that researchers could cure diseases such as Parkinson's disease and multiple sclerosis? Odds are, you would be in favor of ending the suffering of the thousands of people who currently battle such diseases.
These cures and many more are the potential results of embryonic stem cell research. Embryonic stem cells are stem cells isolated from embryos during a specific stage of development known as the blastocyst stage.
These stem cells can renew themselves and reproduce to form all cell types of the body. Research utilizing these stem cells requires the destruction of an embryo, making the practice a point of moral, scientific, religious, and political controversy.
Many argue that the destruction of embryos for research purposes is unethical based on the belief that embryos qualify as forms of life that deserve respect. Those in favor of embryonic stem cell research deem such a loss acceptable for the future benefits that this research could have on thousands of lives.
While various arguments surround this debate, the main point of controversy is the source of stem cells used and the method with which they are obtained. In this paper, I will establish what stem cells are and the difference between embryonic and adult stem cells; then I will evaluate the two main arguments in the embryonic stem cell research debate; and finally, I will analyze the ethics of these arguments to come to the conclusion that embryonic stem cell research is ethical under certain circumstances.
Science, Ethics, and Public Policy," human embryonic stem cells are "a self-renewing cell line that gives rise to all cells and tissues of the body" Holland 3.
Most stem cells are only able to differentiate into a single form of offspring cells, otherwise known as progeny cells. For example, hematopoietic stem cells are a type of stem cells that can only form blood cells and skin stem cells can similarly only produce skin cells.
These types of stem cells are referred to as adult stem cells or somatic stem cells because they are gathered from patients after birth Devolder 5. Meanwhile, embryonic stem cells are pluripotent, meaning they have the capacity to produce all cells and tissues of the body Holland 5.
Embryonic stem cells, however, only have this pluripotent potential for the particular five-to-seven-day stage of embryonic development known as the blastocyst stage, after which they can only reproduce a single cell type "The Ethics of Embryonic Stem Cell Research" Stem cells, in general, hold great promise for the future of medicine.
Thus far, stem cell-based therapies have been developed to treat illnesses that previously had no cure. One example is bone marrow transplantation to treat leukemia and other blood disorders.
The hematopoietic stem cells in bone marrow are injected into a patient who has severely reduced blood cell levels and these stem cells generate new blood cells, restoring the patient's immune system Devolder 5. Therapies such as this will continue to be discovered with the support of stem cell research.
In addition to the development of revolutionary therapies, stem cell research also provides valuable information about mechanisms regulating cell growth, migration, and differentiation. Scientists can learn about these processes by studying stem cells that have been stimulated to differentiate into different types of body cells.
The discovery of new information about these concepts will allow scientists to better understand early human development and how tissues are maintained throughout life 8. Embryonic stem cells are particularly valuable not only because of their pluripotent qualities, but also because of their ability to renew themselves.
This is done by "divid[ing] asynchronously — at different times — into one differentiated daughter cell1 and one stem cell-like daughter cell. Other types of stem cells eventually lose the ability to divide, making them less valuable for research purposes.
Embryonic stem cells' ability to be produced in large quantities allows researchers to make progress in regenerative medicine, using these cells to develop new functional cells, tissues, and organs.
The healthy cells are implanted into the patient, serving as treatment to permanently repair failing organs Holland 5. The otherwise lack of treatment for loss of organ function displays the valuable potential of embryonic stem cells.
The sources of embryonic stem cells are a main point of controversy in the debate regarding embryonic stem cell research. Some possible sources for these stem cells include embryos created via in vitro fertilization for either research or reproduction ; five-to-nine-week old embryos or fetuses obtained through elective abortion; and embryos created through cloning or what is known as somatic cell nuclear transfer Liu 1.
Secondly, and most importantly, human pluripotent stem cells have the ability to generate cells and tissue which could be used for “cell transplantation therapies,” These therapies would be aimed at finding ways to cure the diseases and disorders resulting from the dysfunctioning of specific types of cells and tissue. HOW IS THE ETHICS OF STEM CELL RESEARCH DIFFERENT FROM THE ETHICS OF ABORTION? ELIZABETH HARMAN Abstract: It seems that if abortion is permissible, then stem cell research must be made concerning the ethics of stem cell research, focusing in particular on pursue in the essay. First, the beneﬁts from stem cell . The Ethics of Stem Cell Research Essay Words 5 Pages While some people might say that stem cell research is immoral and unethical, others believe that it is a magical solution for almost any problem, thus leading to a very controversial issue.
Somatic cell nuclear transfer is the laboratory creation of a viable embryo by implanting a donor nucleus from a body cell into an egg cell. The ethics of obtaining embryonic stem cells via these sources can be questionable and have led to disputes that I will later address.
Research utilizing human embryonic stem cell lines has focused on the potential to generate replacement tissues for malfunctioning cells or organs Liu 1.
A specific technique has been isolated to utilize stem cells in order to repair a damaged tissue or organ: Scientists could then culture these stem cells by creating conditions that enable them to replicate many times in a petri dish without differentiating.
Such a population of proliferating stem cells originating from a single parent group of stem cells is a stem cell line.Embryonic Stem Cells Research Essay - Embryonic stem cells research is a very conflicting subject in the United States. Some people think that it is morally and religiously incorrect as they are killing a human life at the first stage of life.
- Stem Cells -- Ethics, Research, and Regulation I. Introduction: “Embryonic stem cell research. Secondly, and most importantly, human pluripotent stem cells have the ability to generate cells and tissue which could be used for “cell transplantation therapies,” These therapies would be aimed at finding ways to cure the diseases and disorders resulting from the dysfunctioning of specific types of cells and tissue.
Free Essay: Embryonic stem cells can be defined as stem cells that are derived from the undifferentiated inner mass cells of a human embryo. In other words. Stem cells are unique and rare cells that are not assigned to carry out a specific function and are defined by two properties: self-renewal and differentiation.
Self-renewal is an ability that allows the cell to divide and make more cells. Differentiation is the ability to separate and make.
The Ethics of Stem Cell Research Essay example - According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), stem cells are 1 "Cells with the ability to divide for indefinite periods in culture and to give rise to specialized cells.". Ethics of Stem Cell Research Essay Stem cell research represents a new opportunity for ethical thought and debate.
Stem cells are primitive The Ethics of Stem Cell Research Stem Cells are unspecified cells that have the capability to renew themselves through cell division.