Blogs Articles Organizations Biography Jack's Book Contact Information Links

Navigation: SOS Sisson > Life Ethics Blog


Jack Sisson's Life Ethics Blog

We must find new ways through many ethical issues, especially regarding bioethics, medical ethics, and criminal justice. Jack Sisson's 'Life Ethics' blog focuses on numerous areas of concern, including the philosophical and ethical dilemmas surrounding stem-cell research, abortion, medical research, and health care.

 
I just found an interesting article by Dr. Elizabeth M. Whelan, President of the American Council on Science and Health. Dr. Whelan points out something that many of us involved in the stem-cell debate might not be aware of:
The primary problem here is that American consumers have been led to believe that if only President Bush -- or a Congress overruling him -- would allow federal funding for research on fertilized eggs from fertility clinics (ones which would otherwise be discarded), then we would be well on our way to cures for Parkinson's disease, diabetes, and a whole host of other maladies.

If you believe that making available the 400,000 fertilized eggs now in the freezers of medical facilities around the country will give researchers what they need to forge ahead with new breakthrough technologies, then of course you would applaud Senator Frist's announcement. And you would ask for no more.
I have to admit that I was one of those who believed that the 400,000 frozen fertilized eggs would solve the problem. But according to Dr. Whelan:
But the well-guarded secret is that access to these few hundred thousand embryos, while it may assist researchers temporarily, is only part of what is needed to keep America in competition with other nations seeking stem-cell based therapies.
Whelan posits that the greatest help to scientists will come from federal funding for "somatic cell nuclear transfer" (SCNT), also known as "therapeutic cloning."

Now, if you're like me, the word cloning conjures up all sorts of unpleasant images, mostly gleaned from science fiction movies like the recent release, The Island. In this film, Ewan McGregor and Scarlett Johansson, living in a sterile, futuristic environment, discover they and all their friends are clones manufactured to supply body parts and organs to their wealthy "owners" when needed. Well, it's time to rein in your horror, because as Dr. Whelan explains:
The difference between therapeutic cloning and what is known as "reproductive cloning" lies not in methodology but in intent. Reproductive cloning is performed with the intention of creating a fully-formed organism, a clone like the sheep Dolly. But blastocysts created for therapeutic cloning, as in the example above, are not intended to be implanted in a uterus. In fact, they are never allowed to develop for more than five days. Instead, these blastocysts are seen as sources of cells with the unique potential to form any cell type in the human body. It is these cells that scientists hope to understand well enough to guide their formation into neurons that could treat Parkinson disease, insulin cells that could cure diabetes, and more.
Read the entire article. It's worth it.
Technorati Tags: , , ,

Comments:
i don't understand the diff between therapautic and reprodutcive cloning. isn't a clone just a copy. ???
 
Post a Comment

<< Home
Brain Pills
Roe v. Wade
Stem Cells
Stem Cell Fight!
Bearing Right
Moral Monkey?
Op-ed
Dave's site
Stem Stall
Screamers
Bush the hypocrite

June 2005   July 2005   August 2005   September 2005   October 2005   December 2005   March 2006   April 2006   May 2006   July 2006   August 2006   September 2006   October 2006   November 2006   January 2007   February 2007   March 2007   April 2007   May 2007   June 2007   July 2007   August 2007   September 2007   October 2007   November 2007   December 2007   January 2008   February 2008   March 2008   March 2009   November 2009   April 2010   October 2010   April 2011   May 2011   January 2012   February 2012   March 2012   April 2012   May 2012   June 2012   November 2012   December 2012   January 2013   February 2013   March 2013   April 2013   May 2013  

only sossisson.com

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?


  Link to us: Link to us!