You are on page 1of 15

Embryonic stem cell

Ashleigh Powell and Samantha Hattingh
Stem Cells?
A cell that has the ability to consciously
divide and differentiate (develop) into
various other kind(s) of cells/tissues

Embryonic stem cells originate as inner
mass cells with in a blastocyst

They can become any tissue in the body,
excluding a placenta
Catholic Beliefs
A good end does not make right an action which
in itself is wrong, such as the use of stem cells in
therapeutic procedures.

From the point of conception an embryo is a living
human being. A human subject with a defined
identity which will gradually develop, such that at
no later stage can it be considered as a simple
mass of cells.
Catholic Belief
By treating any fellow human being as a mere object of research
we cross the fundamental moral line. The only thing that affirms
the human dignity of all of us is to reject this first step.

While human life is threatened in many ways in our society, the
destruction of human embryos for stem-cell research confronts
us with an issue of respect for life in a new way.

The issue of stem-cell research does not force us to choose
between science and ethics, much less between science and
religion. It presents a choice as to how our society will pursue
scientific and medical progress.
social justice teachings
Human dignity; it confronts the issue of human dignity
due to people not being treated as equals

Rights and responsibilities; it denies people their right to

Options for the poor and vulnerable; it takes advantage of
the vulnerable who are unwillingly taken apart

Call for family, community and participation; denies the
people a future chance for family, community and

Care for gods creation; it takes advantage of something
god has created
church scriptures
"By his incarnation the Son of God has united himself in some fashion with every
human being". This saving event reveals to humanity not only the boundless love of
God who "so loved the world that he gave his only Son" (Jn 3:16), but also the
incomparable value of every human person.
Jeremiah 1:4-5
Now the word of the Lord came to me, saying, Before I formed you in the womb I
knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet
to the nations.
"Human life is sacred because from its beginning it involves the creative action of God',
and it remains forever in a special relationship with the Creator, who is its sole end.
God alone is the Lord of life from its beginning until its end: no one can, in any
circumstance, claim for himself the right to destroy directly an innocent human
being". With these words the Instruction Donum Vitae sets forth the central content
of God's revelation on the sacredness and inviolability of human life.

"From man in regard to his fellow man I will demand an accounting for human life"
(Gen 9:5): human life is sacred and inviolable
Court Cases
2002 The Parliament passed Australias first laws on
stem cell research, allowing scientists to extract SCs
from spare embryos intended for IVF but preventing
therapeutic cloning.
6 Dec 2006 Australia legalised the cloning of human
embryos for stem cell research
26 June 2006 New South Wales Parliament has
passed legislation overturning a ban on therapeutic
- It allows the use of cloned human embryos for stem cell

relevant article
Human embryonic stem cells hold promise for new medical therapies, and the Obama
administration has attempted to lift restrictions on the public funding of the
research that were put in place by the preceding president. That attempt was put
on hold when some researchers who focus on adult stem cells filed suit, claiming
that their funding prospects were harmed by the change in policy. After an initial
success with a District Court, an Appeals Court left the suit with little chance of
ultimately succeeding. Now, the trial judge has (perhaps grudgingly) responded to
the Appeals Court's ruling and issued summary judgment on behalf of the National
Institutes of Health, endorsing the legality of its decision to allow funding to flow to
stem cell research.

Which leaves us with research. The law governing stem cell research prohibits funding
"research in which a human embryo" is subject to harm. The judge in this case,
Royce C. Lamberth, read "research" very broadly, in a manner that would
encompass all the preparatory work, including the isolation of stem cells. In
contrast, the NIH read the term narrowly, as applying only to the work it was
providing funding to.
guidance from church
The church teaches that it is morally and ethically
wrong, it defies the life God grants us. We cannot
play god.
that its not treating others as you want to be treated
and it exploits the lives of other and their right to make
their own decisions.
However , there is no place set up where people can
seek guidance on the issue
The Argument
I have learned from my earliest medical
education that human life begins at the
time of conception.
Dr Alfred Bongioanni

after fertilisation has taken place a new
human being has come into being
Dr Jerome LeJeune
The Argument
Embryo Is Not a Person
Persons... Are members of a social community
that shapes and values them, and personhood
must be defined in terms of interactions and
relationships with others.
Susan Sherwin

Newborns lack the ability to perform personal
functions... Therefore, on the basis of
functionally-defined personhood, newborns fail
the test and could be killed on the basis of non-
Rev Dr Peter Hung Tran
The Argument
At Conception, it is only a single

Claim: Fertilised eggs are single cells,
like blood cells or other parts of the body

Rebuttal: This single cell is unique from
both the fathers and mothers cells and is
the beginning of every new human being

global perspective
The ethical dilemma
Embryonic stem cell research poses a moral dilemma. It forces us to
choose between two moral principles:
The duty to prevent or alleviate suffering
The duty to respect the value of human life
In the case of embryonic stem cell research, it is impossible to
respect both moral principles. To obtain embryonic stem cells, the
early embryo has to be destroyed. This means destroying a
potential human life. But embryonic stem cell research could lead
to the discovery of new medical treatments that would alleviate
the suffering of many people.