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Essay on Stem Cell Research

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I.     Introduction
The desecration of life by use of embryonic stem cells is not necessary with alternatives such as adult, placenta, and umbilical stem cells available which hold promising results. Stem cell research definitely has shown its ability to benefit humanity, but at what lengths? At what cost? America along with the world continues to battle against embryonic stem cell research as it results in termination of a human life form. With a clear understanding of what stem cells are and how they are used the evidence clearly shows that alternative forms of stems cells can lead to the same promising results without arising any ethical concerns.
     The most well accepted definition of stem cells is that they are cells that can differentiate into many other different cells. Stem cells are responsible for renewing other cells and tissues within the human body. (Grompe 2) Stem cell research is the process of advancing our knowledge about how an organism develops from a single cell and how healthy cells replace damaged cells in adult organisms. This research and desired knowledge is admirable, however in 1988 this research took a turn for the worst when embryonic stem cell research began to emerge. Pluripotents cells, or as we know them embryonic stem cells, are considered the most versatile because these cells can form into any type of human cell, and this is why scientist see embryonic research necessary. Adult stem cells withhold this same potential which will be discussed further along. The negative side to the use of embryonic stem cells is that they are derived from early embryos, which is what many view as the beginning of life. These embryos are being destroyed in the process of research thus preventing life from running its natural course.
     The ethical controversies that arise in embryonic stem cell research are safety, resource allocation, and methods of harvesting cells. The safety of the existing cell lines is a concern because most of the cells have been grown in culture with the help of mouse stem cells which could lead to the transfer of dangerous animal viruses to humans. (3) The methods of harvesting the embryonic stem cells results in killing a living embryo, but some of these stem cells are produced by cloning. Cloning creates great fear in hearts and minds of the human race as the consequences of its use are unknown. The stem ...


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... of this country. Life is precious, and life is not expendable. Let us not trade one life for another. Alternative stem cell research does not force us into these ethical decisions. Chose life...Chose the alternative stem cell research.


Work Cited

Conan-Davies, Richard. “Stem Cells.” ClearlyExplained.com 8 June 2002.


Grompe, Markus. “Genetics of Development.” Rediscovering Biology
     

“AAAS Policy Brief: Stem Cell Research.” Advance Science, Serving Society 26 August 2004.
     

Pecorino, Lauren. “Stem Cells for Cell-Based Thearapies.” Action BioScience July 2001.
     


“Stem Cell Basics.” Stem Cell Information 10 June 2004.
     

“Immunosuppressive Drugs.” National Arthritis Foundation 23 April 2005.
     

“Embryonic Stem Cell Research.” The White House 9 August 2001.
     

“Radio Address by the President to the Nation” The White House 11 August 2001.
     

“Majority of Consumers Approve of Stem Cell Research Despite Ethical Concerns.” Weber Shandwick Worldwide 9 June 2004.

“Towns, C.R., and D.G. Jones. “Stem Cells, Embryos, and the Environment: A Context for both Scienc and Ethics.” Journal of Medical Ethics 30 (2004):410-413.


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