Stem Cell Research

Essay by AmandaLeighHigh School, 12th gradeA, November 2009

download word file, 2 pages 3.0

Downloaded 14 times

Scientific ResearchScience should be free to pursue stem cell research, which could have enormous benefitsto humanity. First of all I believe this because statistics put into perspective that Americans bornin 1900 could expect to live an average age of 49 years, but those born today will live an averageof 77 years. Much of the credit for that longer, healthier life span goes to medical discoveriessuch as insulin, antibiotics, blood pressure medications, and advanced surgery. Polio and measleshave been virtually eliminated in the United States and we have increased our treatments to fightAIDS and cancer. For better or worse, humans are created with a set of genes that have evolvedover hundreds of generations. Even our imperfections may have a purpose. If science gives usthe ability to "cure" people who carry different genetic traits, than why not? Unlike me, manyother people will disagree. They might say that scientists can and should use new knowledge totreat individuals who have fallen ill, even by repairing an individuals genetic flaws.

But letting anychanges to the genetic code be passed on to future generations could have consequences that noone can even imagine. There is jut no way to anticipate the kind of damage this may cause.

Genetic testing is expensive, and in most cases can only provide limited information about therisk of disease since there are so many factors, genetic and otherwise, that determine who willget sick, and when. It can be used to determine access to being denied to individuals and theirfamilies. A pitfall of the uncertainty of genetic information is that it could lead patients to makedecisions they will come to regret. Finally I would disagree with there points because prohibitingresearch into areas such as cloning and genetic alteration may allay the public' fears, but couldalso cut off progress that would benefit...