Purdue SOC 57300 - Human Embryo Research (22 pages)

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Human Embryo Research



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Human Embryo Research

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Pages:
22
School:
Purdue University
Course:
Soc 57300 - The Human Side of Medicine
The Human Side of Medicine Documents
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Human Embryo Research James G Anderson Ph D Purdue University Treatment of Embryos Genetic Screening Research Technology Amniocentesis after 15 weeks of gestation Chorionic villus sampling 1st trimester Pre implantation genetic screening before clinical pregnancy Issues Costs Eight million carriers of cystic fibrosis 30 000 babies born with cystic fibrosis Annual costs of care range from 8 500 46 000 Embryonic screening cost 6 000 13 000 The cost is not covered by health insurance in the U S The cost is covered in the U K Options Elect not to have children Artificial insemination with anonymous donor Prenatal genetic testing with possible abortion Pre implantation genetic screening Pre implantation Genetic Testing in vitro fertilization IVF Allow fertilized cells to divide until 8 cells 3 days Remove single cell for diagnosis within 15 hours Decide whether or not to implant What should we test for Genetic disorders 700 inherited conditions 344 test clinically available 211 prenatal tests offered Traits Gender Inherited Genetic Disorders Tay Sachs disease Sickle cell anemia Cystic fibrosis Hemophilia Huntington s Disease Down s Syndrome Arguments in favor of testing Permits couples with genetic predispositions for disease to conceive a child without passing on the disorder Reduces abortions Couples have a right to the information Arguments against testing May lead to designer babies Results in destruction of embryos Discriminates against embryos with disabilities Potential misuse of genetic information Potential stigma and discrimination against carriers Ethical Issues Life of the embryo Eugenics Use of genetic information e g employers insurance companies Lack of regulation of fertility clinics Disposal of unused embryos Research Improvements in pregnancy Fertilization Egg activation maturation and freezing Embryonic screening Harvesting embryonic stem cells Cloning Cross species fertilization Stem cell research Derived from 4 day old embryos Stem calls can be transformed into 220 human cell types e g pancreatic cells nerve cells skin cells cardiac muscle cells Stem cells may cure Alzheimer s disease Parkinson s disease Huntington s disease Diabetes Spinal cord injuries Skin tissue for burn victims Damaged arteries and hearts Grow body parts livers hearts Arguments for research Potential cures for neurological and other illnesses New field of research will boost the biotechnology industry Other countries will continue research and development Fertility clinics already possess 400 000 unused frozen embryos that will be discarded Arguments against research Fertilized egg is a human being and should not be destroyed Stem cell research is similar to using the results of Nazi medical experiments Using fertilized eggs for research is a slippery slope Commercial exploitation treat human embryos as property Production of embryos to harvest stem cells Potential Therapeutic Uses Parkinson s Disease Huntington s Disease Diabetes Spinal cord injuries Growth of new tissue organs from stem cells Regulations NIH ban on funds for research on human embryos Fertility Clinic Success Rate and Certification Act 1992 25 states have laws regulating disposal of embryos Congress is considering the Human Genome Privacy Act Debate over applicability of the Americans with Disabilities Act NIH guidelines allow federal funding of research with embryonic stem cells from existing cell lines 28 states criminalize harm to fetus Unborn Victims of Violence Act pending NIH Human Embryo Research Panel Recommendations Acceptable Research Methods of improving the chances of pregnancy Fertilization Egg activation maturation and freezing Pre implantation genetic diagnosis Development of embryonic stem cells Needs Additional Review Cloning and use of oocytes without their transfer to the uterus for gestation Unacceptable Research Cloning and use of oocytes followed by transfer to the uterus for gestation Cross species fertilization Guidelines for Review Conduct of Federally Funded Research Qualified researcher Valid research design Major scientific clinical benefits Number of embryos should be minimal Informed consent obtained from gamete donors Embryos not be created solely for research No buying and selling of embryos No research on embryos more than 14 days old


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