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Embryonic Stem cell research is a scientific process that pertains the harvesting of embryonic stem cells and manipulating them to differentiate into an organ of desire. Stem cell research is an area that has drawn significant scientific interest because of the possibility of treating debilitating diseases caused by organ failure or abnormalities such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Leukemia, and diabetes (Panno, 2009). However, stem cell research has also drawn significant controversies due to the ethical implications of using human embryos to harvest the stem cells. An analysis of most of the controversies raised also indicates that they lack sound ethical or scientific arguments.
Diseases such as diabetes, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and diabetes cost health care sectors of countries a significant percentage of their health care budget in terms of management. In addition, such diseases condemn individuals to dependent and low quality lives not to mention the grief, anguish, and pain of loved ones. According to Jones (2004) transplants from stem cell embryonic stem can reduce long term expenditure on such diseases and restore quality life to patients.
The direct linking of embryonic stem cells research to killing, which is the basis of ethical arguments, is unfounded. According to Jones (2004), most of the embryos used by private researchers are nonviable and would otherwise be thrown away. Jones (2004) goes on to explain that the withdrawal of former U.S. President Clinton of support for stem cell research and the refusal of his successor President Bush to release funding were due to political pressure from supporters.
Stem cell research can save lives and restore happiness and dignity to patients of some debilitating diseases. If the ethical controversies raised do not have sound ethical and scientific arguments, governments should support embryonic stem cell research.
Jones, G. (2004). Stem cell research and cloning: contemporary challenges to our humanity. Adelaide: Australian Theological Forum.
Panno, J. (2009). Stem cell research: medical applications and ethics. New York: Facts on File.