May 03 2010
While many are “strong supporters of science and technology”( Source A), the subject of therapeutic cloning has been a widely argued over topic in present days scientific spectrum, specifically because of its ethical and moral implications. However some argue that therapeutic cloning can “lead to cures for many diseases” and should be “legal and regulated”(Source E). Both views obviously have their pros and cons, as most views on controversial topics tend to have. Some will “recoil at the idea of growing human beings for spare body parts or creating life for our convenience,”(Source A) while others embrace therapeutic cloning as a method of “deepening comprehension of disease origins and development”, and to develop new medical therapies”(Source E).
As a society that strives to reach its fullest potential in the scientific and biomedical field, while remaining morally and ethically correct, we must find a solution that allows us to do both. We must find a solution that allows us to guarantee the “right to life… is vested in each human being”(Source D), and that allows us to advance in the field of biomedical research.
Stem cells are also called undifferentiated cells because of their ability to develop into many different various tissues of the human body. There are two different kinds of stem cells, Adult stem cells, which are “derived from several sources, including umbilical cord blood and human fat,”(Source C) and Embryonic stem cells, which are located in the early human embryo. Therapeutic cloning is known for taking advantage of cloned embryonic stem cells, which results in the death of the “involuntary donor”(Source C) However, studies have shown, as in the case of “37-year-old Hwang Mi-Soon,”(Source C) that Adult Stem cells, specifically those found in umbilical cord blood, can be used to repair damaged human organs. Hwang Mi-Soon’s spinal cord was damaged in an accident and she was incapable of walking for 20 years. After her spinal cord was repaired through the use of “stem cells derived from umbilical cord blood,”(Source C) she was able to stand upright and walk with the assistance of a metal walking frame. This alternative to the use of embryonic stem cells can promote therapeutic cloning without “demoralizing and redefining human life”(Source F). Furthermore, “health-related products” such as “clotting factors” which are missing in hemophilia patients can be developed through the use of animals produced by therapeutic cloning. (Source B)
If alternatives to therapeutic cloning, using embryonic stem cells, exist that allow researchers to not only repair and save lives, but also allow them to do so morally and ethically, then why should they turn instead to a technique that causes much controversy across the globe? The use of adult stem cells during therapeutic cloning is a solution lingering at the tip of our nose, so why do we refuse to accept it? Biomedical science and Bioethics must find a compromise. Whether it be adult stem cells or not, we must as a society find a solution that benefits all, including the seeds of the next generation.
Bush, George W. “George W. Bush on Stem Cell Research.” July-Aug. 2001. Speech.
Wilmut, Ian. “Animal Cloning Experiments Will Benefit Humans.” Current Controversies: The Rights of Animals. Ed. Tamara L. Roleff. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 1999. Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center. Gale. SHANGHAI AMERICAN SCHOOL. 3 May. 2010 <http://find.galegroup.com/ovrc/infomark.do?&contentSet=GSRC&type=retrieve&tabID=T010&prodId=OVRC&docId=EJ3010062211&source=gale&srcprod=OVRC&userGroupName=ingl29443&version=1.0>.
“Pro-life stem-cell therapy.(Insider Report)(Brief Article).” The New American. 20. 26 (Dec 27, 2004): 5(1). Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center. Gale. SHANGHAI AMERICAN SCHOOL. 3 May. 2010 <http://find.galegroup.com/ovrc/infomark.do?&contentSet=IAC-Documents&type=retrieve&tabID=T003&prodId=OVRC&docId=A126683885&source=gale&srcprod=OVRC&userGroupName=ingl29443&version=1.0>.
Sanctity of Human Lifel Act, H.R. 227, 111 Cong. (2009). Print.
Barglow, Raymond. “Therapeutic Cloning Can Save Lives.” Print.
Dooley, Thomas P. “Human Cloning Is Unneccessary.” Print.
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