Molecular Biology

Arguments for and against Stem Cell Research



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Making a Difference with Stem Cells

Locked inside a stem cell may be the secret of cures to come for many different diseases. It doesn't seem possible something which can provide hope could also be morally unaccepted. Even with the restrictions of the use of human embryonic stem cells it has not hampered the researcher's ability to look for new cures. Due to the financial support of some individual states it is possible for this research to occur. If anything the embryonic stem cell limitations have sent biologists, doctors, and other researchers into new directions in understanding the possible applications of stem cells. The article, Standing by for Stem Cell, reminds the reader that stem cell research is still in its infancy and someday may be the stepping stone towards a variety of medical therapies.

Locked inside a stem cell may be the secret of cures to come for many different diseases. It doesn't seem possible something which can provide hope could also be morally unaccepted. Even with the restrictions of the use of human embryonic stem cells it has not hampered the researcher's ability to look for new cures. Due to the financial support of some individual states it is possible for this research to occur. If anything the embryonic stem cell limitations have sent biologists, doctors, and other researchers into new directions in understanding the possible applications of stem cells. The article, Standing by for Stem Cell, reminds the reader that stem cell research is still in its infancy and someday may be the stepping stone towards a variety of medical therapies.

The article stated researchers at the Yale University School of Medicine have been experimenting with bone marrow stem cells in mice. This research has acknowledged the potential stem cells have in repairing various biological system functions. While at the Yale-New Haven Medical Center a therapeutic technique called apheresis is already in use. Aphereisi is used to collect a cancer patient's healthy stem cells from their bone marrow, and replaces them after chemotherapy has been performed. Researchers at the University of Connecticut Health Center recognize the stem cells ability to limit genetic rejection factor and are working on therapeutically cloning these cells (p. 1-3). The above procedures show how harvesting of stem cells is not limited to the destruction of embryos.

The overtone of this article is a constant reminder of how stem cell research can still be responsible for rejuvenating the quality of life once thought to be near death. As stated by Dr. Gabel, "But as a developmental biologist, I look at it as a way to immortalize the embryo." Dr. Gabel added, "You're making a cell line that can live forever and that can potentially help treat the human condition" (p.4). In my opinion the public's eye may open as stem cell research matures, and they become aware of the potential to enhance the quality of a child's life through new therapies. One must keep in mind this will not happen over night due to the scientific method of investigation. It may take many years before the scientific world understands all the applications of stem cells and its place in creating new medical therapies to help with long-term fatal diseases.

References

Sawicki, S. (2006, April). Standing by Stem Cells. The New York Times on the Web, (p.1-4). Retrieved October 4, 2006, from http://www.researchnavigator.com/articles/article.asp?p=469198





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