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Stem cell research and cloning the poet
Rojo remarked seven years ago. Patterns, both in inanimate and in living natural objects represent justone of those questions. A spectacular example of a pattern in living natural objects arethe hexagonal hives of honeybees(picture). A comparison of the pictures shows that beehive hexagons are more regular thanthose of the basalt columns. Moreover, they are not producedby cooling of cracks following the path of least resistance, as if they werethe output of a natural physical law; else all species of bees would buildhives; some do not. Instead, beehives are built upby certain living organisms containing the genetic instructions for hive-making. Instead of dissipating energy by cooling, bees putenergy into the system. The result is a purposeful, structurally-soundsystem of cells they can use as incubators for their eggs. The resemblanceto basalt columns is only superficial.
The money trail: Follow the money is good advice inscience as well as politics. Big money is supporting research on globalwarming, embryonic stem cells and certain forms of cancer to the exclusion ofother maladies. Funding has no necessary connection to the validity or importanceof the subject matter, but can have profound effects on the motivation of scientists. When the NSF funds millions of dollars to studyastrobiology or Darwins tree of life, do you think the recipients are goingto come back and report that the whole exercise was a dead end?
Stem cell research essays pro euthanasia
Some grant that human embryos lack the properties essential to aright to life, but hold that they possess an intrinsic value that callsfor a measure of respect and places at least some moral constraints ontheir use: “The life of a single human organism commandsrespect and protection … no matter in what form or shape,because of the complex creative investment it represents and because ofour wonder at the divine or evolutionary processes that produce newlives from old ones.” (Dworkin l992, 84). There are,however, divergent views about the level of respect embryos command andwhat limits exist on their use. Some opponents of HESC researchhold that the treatment of human embryos as mere research tools alwaysfails to manifest proper respect for them. Other opponents take aless absolutist view. Some, for example, deem embryos lessvaluable than more mature human beings but argue that the benefits ofHESC research are too speculative to warrant the destruction ofembryos, and that the benefits might, in any case, be achieved throughthe use of noncontroversial sources of stem cells (e.g., adult stemcells) (Holm 2003).
Given that a human embryo cannot reason at all, the claim that ithas a rational nature has struck some as tantamount to asserting thatit has the potential to become an individual that can engage inreasoning (Sagan & Singer 2007). But an entity'shaving this potential does not logically entail that it has the samestatus as beings that have realized some or all of their potential(Feinberg 1986). Moreover, with the advent of cloningtechnologies, the range of entities that we can now identify aspotential persons arguably creates problems for those who place greatmoral weight on the embryo's potential. A single somaticcell or HESC can in principle (though not yet in practice) develop intoa mature human being under the right conditions—that is, wherethe cell's nucleus is transferred into an enucleated egg, the newegg is electrically stimulated to create an embryo, and the embryo istransferred to a woman's uterus and brought to term. If thebasis for protecting embryos is that they have the potential to becomereasoning beings, then, some argue, we have reason to ascribe a highmoral status to the trillions of cells that share this potential and toassist as many of these cells as we reasonably can to realize theirpotential (Sagan & Singer 2007, Savulescu 1999).Because this is a stance that we can expect nearly everyone to reject,it's not clear that opponents of HESC research can effectivelyground their position in the human embryo's potential.
International Society for Stem Cell Research Stem Cell Research
In its most basic form, the central argument supporting the claimthat it is unethical to destroy human embryos goes as follows: Itis morally impermissible to intentionally kill innocent human beings;the human embryo is an innocent human being; therefore it is morallyimpermissible to intentionally kill the human embryo. It is worthnoting that this argument, if sound, would not suffice to show that allor even most HESC research is impermissible, since most investigatorsengaged in HESC research do not participate in the derivation of HESCsbut instead use cell lines that researchers who performed thederivation have made available. To show that researchers who usebut do not derive HESCs participate in an immoral activity, one wouldfurther need to establish their complicity in the destruction ofembryos. We will consider this issue in section 2. But forthe moment, let us address the argument that it is unethical to destroyhuman embryos.
9, 2001 Stem cell research is not new but only recently has it become widely known to the public because the benefits of the technology are coming closer to reality; the field of stem cell biology is advancing at an incredible pace with new discoveries being reported in scientific literature on a weekly basis.
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The Ethics Of Embryonic Stem Cell Research Philosophy Essay
Further issues emerge with the prospect of being able to produce large quantities of eggs from stem cells. As the capacity to identify disease and non-disease related alleles through preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) expands, the ability to create large numbers of embryos would substantially increase the chances of finding an embryo that possesses most or all of the traits one wishes to select. This would be beneficial in preventing the birth of children with genetic diseases. But matters would become morally contentious if it were possible to select for non-disease characteristics, such as sexual orientation, height, superior intelligence, memory, and musical ability. One common argument against using PGD in this way is that it could devalue the lives of those who do not exhibit the chosen characteristics. Another concern is that employing PGD to select for non-disease traits would fail to acknowledge the “giftedness of life” by treating children as “objects of our design or products of our will or instruments of our ambition” rather accepting them as they are given to us (Sandel 2004, 56). There is additionally a concern about advances in genetics heightening inequalities where certain traits confer social and economic advantages and only the well-off have the resources to access the technology (Buchanan 1995). Of course, one can question whether the selection of non-disease traits would in fact lead to devaluing other characteristics, whether it would alter the nature of parental love, or whether it is distinct enough from currently permitted methods of gaining social and economic advantage to justify regulating the practice. Nonetheless, the capacity to produce human stem cell-derived gametes would make these issues more pressing.
FREE Ethics of Stem Cell Research Essay - ExampleEssays
One issue arises from the fact that some research on stem cell-derivedgametes requires the creation of embryos, regardless of whether one isusing ESCs or iPSCs. To establish that a particular technique forderiving human gametes from stem cells produces functional sperm andeggs, it is necessary to demonstrate that the cells can produce anembryo. This entails the creation of embryos through in vitrofertilization. Since it would not be safe to implant embryos createdduring the early stages of the research, the likely disposition of theembryos is that they would be destroyed. In such instances, theresearch would implicate all of the moral issues surrounding thecreation and destruction of embryos for research. However, thecreation of embryos for research in this situation would notnecessitate the destruction of the embryos, as it does when embryosare created to derive stem cell lines. One could in principle storethem indefinitely rather than destroy them. This would still leave one subject to the objection that life is being created forinstrumental purposes. But the force of the objection is questionablesince it is not clear that this instrumental use is any moreobjectionable than the routine and widely accepted practice ofcreating excess IVF embryos in the reproductive context to increasethe probability of generating a sufficient number of viable ones toproduce a pregnancy.
Ethics on Stem Cell Research Essay - 675 Words | Cram
...Wallaces views have, for the most part, been deemed synonymous with Darwins. And attribution to the founding theories of evolution has, on the whole, gone to Darwin. A small phrase in Wallaces original essay, however, was his alone: He suggested that certain organisms, or systems that make up organisms, have evolved a way to direct the course of their own evolution, rather than be purely subject to natural selection. As a result, this mechanism could affect whether traits ever get expressed, and therefore subjected to the forces of natural selection. Now, a century-and-a-half later, a group of Princeton University researchers say theyre the first to provide evidence to support Wallaces claim.
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