Friday, March 11, 2005

My Thoughts...

Basically, this is how our proposal went down (and it pretty much sums up my thoughts on SC research):

1) Adult stem cells - human life is not at stake, therefore morality is not an issue.

2) Embryonic stem cells - We propsed that embryos from fertility clinics could be used for stem cell research because they are already slated to be destoryed. Owen put it well, "it's like using a cadaver to train medical students." Our thought was you could regulate cell lines, and update the list of acceptable lines every few years to ensure that those used were collected for the purpose of reproduction.

Then, to extend Owen's analogy, you don't kill a man to study anatomy - one shouldn't kill a perfectly good embryo to perform research. Therefore, we were against collecting embryos for the purpose of stem cell research.

6 Comments:

Blogger Joshua Conner said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

11:48 PM  
Blogger Joshua Conner said...

"Our though was you could regulate cell lines, and update the list of acceptable lines every few years to ensure that those used were collected for the purpose of reproduction."

With over 110,000 babies already born with IVF and the number continuing to rise (as many as 1% of all births are now being concieved in vitro), that seems like a lot of spare embryos. If the government were to open up funding for embryonic stem cell research, would there not been enough embryos in storage to meet demand? If so, why? If not, why are scientists considering using other embryos and therefore why bother to check the stem cell lines?

"Therefore we are against collecting embryos for the purpose of stem cell research."

They want to do that? Why?

Sorry for such a long comment. Your post brought up some interesting questions though.

11:49 PM  
Blogger Kevin said...

would there not been enough embryos in storage to meet demand?
In short: I don't know. According to some papers I've read, it takes between 25 and 100 embryos to create an embryonic stem cell (ESC) line. How many embryos are gained in a year through this process??

In either case, I don't know why scientists would want to collect new ones. Especially considering the research that's going on (much more success w/ adult than embryonic). I doubt there is an advantage to collecting vs. using donated.

8:48 PM  
Blogger isaac rentz said...

Don't listen to Owen or Neal. They have a giant, apple-sized hole in their hearts. They'll get it one day.

5:40 AM  
Blogger Kevin said...

Thanks Isaac, I saw one today and still want one. Not to worry ;-)

9:27 PM  
Blogger Owen said...

Hey now, I like iPods. But the shuffle is a hunk of crap. Much like iMac or iTunes. That's all.

10:31 PM  

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