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Stem-cell Reseach


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Hey, can you guys answer this question(s) about Stem-cells.


What are the ethical arguments for and against stem-cell research? What ethical issues might arise when a drug company funds trials of a new drug it has developed to treat a genetic disorder? Who should determine how the results of transgenic research in plants and animals will be applied?

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The ethical arguments in favor are that stem cells are supposed to have the potential to heal and rejuvenate in unprecedented ways - though I've heard this questioned in practice. The ethical arguments against are that people could be getting paid to abort pregnancies to sell stem cells. The ethical problem with that is that if people are in an economic position to choose to sacrifice their own reproductive potential to provide biomaterial to someone who has the money to pay for it, they would be essentially sacrificing their human right to reproduce for others' healing.

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  • 2 weeks later...




I dislike these type of questions. The first needs to be more specific. First, what type of stem-cells? Embryonic? From what species? Homo sapien?


Stem-cell research is such a broad field that worrying about people aborting their babies for their stem cells is ridiculous at the present. We need not to cross that bridge at this time (although the media thinks we do). We can use model systems like we have been doing and not need to tamper with human embryonic stem cells. There has been outstanding work with more specialized human stem cells that don't need an embryo, just a tissue sample. Here's a video link on fascinating work done with stem-cells:




Drug company:


The main ethical issue I see here is that the drug company will be pressing the researchers to produce results that favors the public use of their product. That they won't be paying researchers to deny their product from reaching the public. The researchers would then feel pressured to pass the drug, or find another job.


Transgenic research:


I think the scientists should be able to perform transgenic experiments as much as they please within the current moral guidelines established. However, if a public product is produced in the process the FDA should review it and pass judgement, and the federal government should ensure the public is aware that the product is a result of genetic manipulation.


I feel its my right to know my gigantic strawberry is a result of animal genes being inserted into it. Especially if I'm Hindu.

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