Stem cell Essay

This essay has a total of 3945 words and 16 pages.

stem cell

Stem Cell Research
In modern medicine today there are remedies for many diseases and sicknesses. For those
unfortunate few with rare diseases, cancer, or a genetic mutation, we don't have a
resolution or cure. The race to find these cures is going on right now. Many think the
solution can be found in the tiny embryonic stem cells. Most of the people who believe
that the embryonic stem cell is the solution also believe that the federal government
should help fund the research. The use of embryonic stem cells is not the only "solution
to be" for these rare cases. Adult stem cell research is another means of finding the
solution to the rare diseases, cancers, and other such sicknesses. Adult stem cell
research is the most moral and effective treatment for the rare diseases and sicknesses.

Adult stem cell research has been proven to be the superior form of stem cell research at
this time. Adult stem cells have provided 56 treatments to various sicknesses from brain
cancer, to Hodgkin's Lymphoma, to Sickle Cell Anemia, to spinal cord injuries (Do No
Harm). These 56 treatments compare to the zero that embryonic stem cell research has so
far provided. It is apparent just from that fact alone that adult stem cells are not
second best. Dr. Carlos Lima in Portugal, has helped several paralyzed patients to restore
bladder and muscle control using stem cells from their own nasal tissue. One of Dr. Lima's
patients appeared before a Senate subcommittee and presented videos of herself walking
with braces (Biotechnology and Bioethics).

Embryonic stem cell research is the study of a tiny cell, taken from an embryo, which
during the development of the embryo grows into many different organ or tissue cells.
These cells can be cultured and grown into almost any organ or tissue cells to repair or
replace damaged cells (Eapejo 53). The only high point that embryonic stem cells have is
that they could potentially be used for anything because of this unique ability to be
grown into any type of cell. But embryonic stem cells also run the risk of tissue
rejection and tumors. This is one of the reasons a human trial has yet to be done (Tada).
Embryonic research is not complete but isn't near ready for a human trial. Embryonic
research is showing no signs that the cures are around the corner either (Center for
Bioethics and Culture). Many people who support embryonic research don't see this though.
Some of the supporters were Christopher Reeves and Ronald Reagan's wife and son, Ronnie.
They felt that embryonic research was the key to finding the cure for Parkinson's Disease,
Alzheimer's, and Multiple Sclerosis. Unfortunately for Christopher Reeves and Ronald
Reagan, a cure was not found in time. Their families argue that political issues withheld
the cures for their diseases. When you look at their cases though, they were too far along
in their sickness to be able to take advantage of the treatments that we have found and
used. Adult stem cell research has had success in finding a cure for Parkinson's and MS.
The best story is of a MS patient, in advanced stages, who with the use of his own adult
stem cells is now almost in total remission (Biotechnology and Bioethics).

Aside from just not having proven to be an effective means of curing sicknesses, embryonic
stem cells are obtained from in vitro fertilized embryos as well as aborted embryos. The
problem with in vitro fertilized embryos is the researchers have a tendencies to make too
many of them, in mass amounts. Their resolution to this is to freeze the embryos, to slow
the death process. So, essentially, these researchers create the living embryo, study it,
freeze it, pull some cells from it, then let it die (Center for Bioethics and Culture).

Stem cell research comes down to a moral issue. It comes down to whether you believe the
killing of an unborn baby is wrong and if you believe the cloning of human beings is
wrong. Joni Tada, a quadriplegic who would benefit greatly from a breakthrough in spinal
cord injury research - a potential cure of stem cell research - said, during an interview
with Larry King, "If we violate a human embryo today, tomorrow we will become callous
about the fetus, then the infant, and then people with physical defects. We want to
influence society with reasoned judgment, strength of character, and a commitment to
improve our culture, not diminish it."

Another issue surrounding stem cell research is whether or not the government should fund
the research of these cells. Many would love to blame President Bush's "stem cell ban" for
the lack of cures for Parkinson's and Alzheimer's, even though they are at our fingertips
(Kass). If these people were to do their research though, they would see that Bush passed
the first federally funded project using stem cells back in 2002 (Manier). Not only would
they see this but they would also find out that from 2001 to 2003 the National Institutes
of Health budget for stem cell research increased $25 million (Kass). The only ban on stem
cell research currently is for federal funding of destructive embryo research. This ban
was also passed by Clinton, not Bush, but Bush does support it saying, "I oppose using
federal funds to perform fetal tissue research from induced abortions"(Mainer).

In the past elections, more breakthroughs have been made. In California Proposition 71
passed. This Proposition allowed for funding of embryonic stem cell research. This
proposition was passed to help big businesses like Biotech from spending too much on their
privately funded research, which is also completely legal with no bans on that. Outside of
the USA, countries including Germany, France, Austria, and Ireland have also banned
embryonic stem cell research. As you can see the myth about governmental banning on the
research is false. At the same time though, governmental funding shouldn't be allowed
simply because that would make the government part of a morally questionable practice. The
funding Bush authorized was for the research on already existing stem cell lines (Mainer).
No federal funds should be used to create new lines which would require killing embryos.
Instead, if scientists want to do the research, they should have to fund it themselves,
not with government money.

As it is evident in modern medical practices, adult stem cell research is the superior of
the two type of researches. Adult stem cell research is safer and morally pleasing. I
believe Bush's actions concerning stem cell research were the appropriate ones to take and
I am confident that he will continue to help lead the nation down the right path
concerning the research. Adult stem cell research is the solution to rare diseases and
sicknesses previously unknown to man. Regardless of the government's policies, it is
likely that privately funded industry will carry on the research of embryonic stem cells.
We will not be able to tell if it will be good or bad.


Works Cited
"Biotechnology and Bioethics." Joni and Friends. 2004. Joni and Friends. 02 Nov. 2004

"The Center for Bioethics and Culture: Bringing People Together for a Human Future". The
Center for Bioethics and Culture. 21 Oct 2004. Center for Bioethics and Culture
Network. 03 Nov 2004

"Do No Harm: The Coalition of Americans for Research Ethics." Do No Harm. 06 Oct. 2004.
Coalition of Americans for Research Ethics. 02 Nov 2004

Eapejo, Roman, ed. Biomedical Ethics. Farmington Hills: Greenhaven Press, 2003.
Kass, Leon R. " Playing Politics With the Sick." The Washington Post. 8 Oct. 2004: A35.
Mainer, Jeremy. "U.S. Quietly OKs Fetal Stem Cell Work: Bush Allows Funding Despite
Federal Limits On Embryo Use ." Chicago Tribune 7 July 2002: 1.

Tada, Joni. Interview. Larry King Live. Cable News Network. 3 Aug. 2004.



Stem Cell Research
In modern medicine today there are remedies for many diseases and sicknesses. For those
unfortunate few with rare diseases, cancer, or a genetic mutation, we don't have a
resolution or cure. The race to find these cures is going on right now. Many think the
solution can be found in the tiny embryonic stem cells. Most of the people who believe
that the embryonic stem cell is the solution also believe that the federal government
should help fund the research. The use of embryonic stem cells is not the only "solution
to be" for these rare cases. Adult stem cell research is another means of finding the
solution to the rare diseases, cancers, and other such sicknesses. Adult stem cell
research is the most moral and effective treatment for the rare diseases and sicknesses.

Adult stem cell research has been proven to be the superior form of stem cell research at
this time. Adult stem cells have provided 56 treatments to various sicknesses from brain
cancer, to Hodgkin's Lymphoma, to Sickle Cell Anemia, to spinal cord injuries (Do No
Harm). These 56 treatments compare to the zero that embryonic stem cell research has so
far provided. It is apparent just from that fact alone that adult stem cells are not
second best. Dr. Carlos Lima in Portugal, has helped several paralyzed patients to restore
bladder and muscle control using stem cells from their own nasal tissue. One of Dr. Lima's
patients appeared before a Senate subcommittee and presented videos of herself walking
with braces (Biotechnology and Bioethics).

Embryonic stem cell research is the study of a tiny cell, taken from an embryo, which
during the development of the embryo grows into many different organ or tissue cells.
These cells can be cultured and grown into almost any organ or tissue cells to repair or
replace damaged cells (Eapejo 53). The only high point that embryonic stem cells have is
that they could potentially be used for anything because of this unique ability to be
grown into any type of cell. But embryonic stem cells also run the risk of tissue
rejection and tumors. This is one of the reasons a human trial has yet to be done (Tada).
Embryonic research is not complete but isn't near ready for a human trial. Embryonic
research is showing no signs that the cures are around the corner either (Center for
Bioethics and Culture). Many people who support embryonic research don't see this though.
Some of the supporters were Christopher Reeves and Ronald Reagan's wife and son, Ronnie.
They felt that embryonic research was the key to finding the cure for Parkinson's Disease,
Alzheimer's, and Multiple Sclerosis. Unfortunately for Christopher Reeves and Ronald
Reagan, a cure was not found in time. Their families argue that political issues withheld
the cures for their diseases. When you look at their cases though, they were too far along
in their sickness to be able to take advantage of the treatments that we have found and
used. Adult stem cell research has had success in finding a cure for Parkinson's and MS.
The best story is of a MS patient, in advanced stages, who with the use of his own adult
stem cells is now almost in total remission (Biotechnology and Bioethics).

Aside from just not having proven to be an effective means of curing sicknesses, embryonic
stem cells are obtained from in vitro fertilized embryos as well as aborted embryos. The
problem with in vitro fertilized embryos is the researchers have a tendencies to make too
many of them, in mass amounts. Their resolution to this is to freeze the embryos, to slow
the death process. So, essentially, these researchers create the living embryo, study it,
freeze it, pull some cells from it, then let it die (Center for Bioethics and Culture).

Stem cell research comes down to a moral issue. It comes down to whether you believe the
killing of an unborn baby is wrong and if you believe the cloning of human beings is
wrong. Joni Tada, a quadriplegic who would benefit greatly from a breakthrough in spinal
cord injury research - a potential cure of stem cell research - said, during an interview
with Larry King, "If we violate a human embryo today, tomorrow we will become callous
about the fetus, then the infant, and then people with physical defects. We want to
influence society with reasoned judgment, strength of character, and a commitment to
improve our culture, not diminish it."

Another issue surrounding stem cell research is whether or not the government should fund
the research of these cells. Many would love to blame President Bush's "stem cell ban" for
the lack of cures for Parkinson's and Alzheimer's, even though they are at our fingertips
(Kass). If these people were to do their research though, they would see that Bush passed
the first federally funded project using stem cells back in 2002 (Manier). Not only would
they see this but they would also find out that from 2001 to 2003 the National Institutes
of Health budget for stem cell research increased $25 million (Kass). The only ban on stem
cell research currently is for federal funding of destructive embryo research. This ban
Continues for 8 more pages >>




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