Stem Cell Research.

Essay by scubasteveUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, February 2004

download word file, 3 pages 4.0

Stem cell research has brought on much controversy. Although very beneficial to medical advancement this research cause our ethical and moral values to be challenged. This paper will provide the reader both the scientific aspect of stem cell research and the opposing ethical aspect. I have retrieved much of my information from organizations such as the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the National Bioethics Advisory Commission (NBAC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Stem cells are undifferentiated cells that are the foundation cells to all other cell types. Also known as embryonic stem cells which simply mean these ideal cells are retrieved from fertilized embryo's under a week old, these are called blastocysts. These blastocysts are then obtained to create independent cell lines. Once these cell lines are established they are then capable of developing into many specific cell types. These embryonic stem cells are so important to scientists because they have the potential to become any other cell in the body.

This means theses stem cells, when cultured and isolated, develop into a variety of important adult cells such as bone marrow, liver, or blood cells.

"Pleuripotent stem cells represent hope for millions of Americans. They have the potential to treat of cure a myriad of diseases, including Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, diabetes, heart disease, stroke, spinal cord injuries and burns." (UW-Madison 2) Stem cell technology can also speed up the process of screening drugs. This allows scientists to directly test chemicals on the specific cells that diseases affects. Another advantage stem cell research provides is in the study of human development. Stem cells are the passageway into learning the developmental events that occur in humans. These insights would help treat and prevent things such as birth defects, miscarriages, and infertility. Another benefit of stem cells is their...