Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Genetic Engineering: Genetic Research and Gene Therapy :: Persuasive Argumentative Essay Examples

Genetic Research and Gene Therapy The human genome is the key to gene therapy, genetic diagnosis, and even to genetically engineer human beings. The human genome is a map of the entire DNA sequence, a blue book, of the individual, which is currently being mapped by the Human Genome Project. Knowing where and which gene controls what trait and causes what genetic disease will armed doctors with a powerful tool to treat their patients in the molecular level. On the other hand, people can jump at the opportunity to manipulate genes to create the perfect baby or enhance a specific trait. One of the few ways of achieving these goals is through research on human embryos. Genetic research on human embryo has two implications. One in therapeutic research (to detect, and hopefully correct gene flaws), which is more practical, and the other is parents deciding how their child should look (or an extreme word, eugenic). The latter, which in the present is wishful thinking but will be a reality in the future if the technology becomes feasible. This paper will mainly discuss the therapeutic research (the medical practice and technological aspect of genetic engineering on embryos) to show what can be done medically and its implications. The consequences, moral and ethical issue of genetic research on human embryos will not be discuss in length here, for it is a topic in other groups and within my group. Currently in therapeutic research, one of the things that can be done is a process call Pre-implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD). PGD is a new medical treatment that incorporates the technology of in vitro fertilization (IVF) and the ability to genetically removed a single cell from an 8-cell embryo to detect any genetic abnormalities (Forbidden Knowledge). In this way, "couples at high genetic risk [will have the] opportunity to start their pregnancy knowing that their baby will not have a lethal inherited disease" rather than stress by deciding whether or not to undergo a prenatal test such as amniocentesis, which requires the pregnancy be at least 15 weeks (Forbidden Knowledge). Some of the major genetic diseases that can be detected are Cystic Fibrosis, Huntington's Disease, Alzheimer's Disease, some form of cancers (Carmosino), aneuploidy chromosomes for chromosome 13, 18, 21, X, and Y (Jones), and sickle-cell anemia (Henig, 58). Gene therapy, which is in is early stages will greatly benefit from embryo research.

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