Welcome to Scribd, the world's digital library. Read, publish, and share books and documents. See more
Download
Standard view
Full view
of .
Look up keyword
Like this
1Activity
0 of .
Results for:
No results containing your search query
P. 1
Stem Cell Research Paper

Stem Cell Research Paper

Ratings: (0)|Views: 36|Likes:
Published by myrentistoodamnhigh

More info:

Published by: myrentistoodamnhigh on Jan 03, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

Availability:

Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
download as DOCX, PDF, TXT or read online from Scribd
See more
See less

10/05/2013

pdf

text

original

 
1
The Controversy of Embryonic Stem Cell ResearchTHE 210/04December 2, 2012
There is a debate over the ethics of stem cell research and many people on opposing sidesof the issue are not aware of all aspects
.
In order to intelligently debate the legal and ethicalissues regarding stem cell research, one must understand what stem cells are, the applicationscurrently available, and the impact of the research
.
It is also important to understand thedistinction between adult and embryonic stem cells before exploring their uses and impacts
.
 Stem cells possess unique properties that make them different from all other cells in thebody
.
Most cells do not have the ability to replicate where stem cells have the potential tomultiply indefinitely
.
Before they have a specific function in the body, stem cells are essentiallyblank slates
.
There are two basic types of stem cells, which have different empirical propertiesand ethical implications
.
 Researchers successfully attained embryonic stem cells from the embryos of mice in1981, which led to the discovery of this process in human beings in 1998 (National Institutes of Health, 2001)
.
Embryonic stem cells are derived from an in vitro embryo between five days andseven weeks
.
Regenerative medicine can benefit greatly from the characteristics of embryonicstem cells
.
This process enables damaged organs and tissues to heal themselves with the help of implanted stem cells matching the organ (Hunziker, 2010, p. 1)
.
There are two traits that makeembryonic stem cells especially suited for this task: the ability to reproduce at a markedly rapid
 
2rate and the ability to do this without differentiating for an extended period
.
Embryonic stemcells are unspecialized, which allows them to interact with and adopt the functions of aspecialized cell
.
This has proven to be an important part of regenerative medicine and acontroversial topic among the debate of science and ethics (National Institutes of Health, 2001)
.
 There are also adult stem cells
.
These differ from embryonic stem cells because they areundifferentiated, which are rare by comparison
.
Adult stem cells can be found throughout thebody in certain organs and tissues, unlike embryonic stem cells
.
Although adult stem cells lack the ability to differentiate and multiply as embryonic cells, adult stem cells have the ability torepair the damaged cells of tissue in which they are located
.
Research on adult stem cells hasbeen ongoing for over half a century, and there has been a vast amount of information gained inthe quest for knowledge that has resulted in immeasurable benefits to the medical sciencecommunity
.
A better understanding of adult stem cells has led to research on controlling thesecells and manipulating them in order to develop more advanced treatments for serious injuriesand illnesses (National Institutes of Health, 2001)
.
 Although adult and embryonic stem cells share some characteristics, the science andethics communities are at odds with the application of research and treatment because of thedifferences between the cells
.
The majority accepts adult stem cell research because the stemcells can be obtained with no harm to the donor
.
There are several arguments regarding theadvantages and disadvantages of both types of cells
.
 Embryonic stem cells are advantageous because they are easily obtained, have thepotential for unlimited cell production, and are not limited to what they can become (Pecorino,
 
32001). Despite these characteristics, there are some drawbacks to using these cells. Manipulationof the stem cells would be difficult because the diseases that embryonic stem cells could benefitare not
entirely understood. There is also the risk of rejection by the recipient’s immune sys
tem,which is a common risk factor with tissue transplants. The most prolific disadvantage is theethical dilemma and the corresponding viewpoints (Pecorino, 2001).As with any controversial topic, there is a corresponding argument for the benefits andlimitations in harvesting adult stem cells for regenerative therapy. There is less risk involved tothe patient since they are receiving their own cells, and they may be easier to activate becauseadult stem cells are already specialized. Research has discovered adult stem cells may be able togive rise to cells from different tissues. The ease of attaining these cells is a mixed bag; while itis safe to harvest most types, it is extremely dangerous to extract stem cells from the brain. Fewadult stem cells can be found in each tissue type, making it difficult to extract in large quantities.The stem cells that are cultivated in a laboratory do not produce as much or for as long asembryonic stem cells. The cells may be damaged by carrying mutations or from experimentation(Pecorino, 2001).On August 9, 2001, former President George W. Bush restricted funds given to researchusing human embryonic stem cells. The constrained funding and extensive criteria had a severeimpact on the number of stem cell lines that were able to continue research. According to
the “
Iam Pro Stem Cell
” organization
(2012), the US Congress tried to expand the number of stem celllines eligible for federal funding between the years of 2005 and 2006, but was vetoed byPresident Bush. President Obama changed the way the National Institutes of Health (NIH) canadministrate stem cell research during his first term as president. The NIH can receive funding to

You're Reading a Free Preview

Download
scribd
/*********** DO NOT ALTER ANYTHING BELOW THIS LINE ! ************/ var s_code=s.t();if(s_code)document.write(s_code)//-->