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Stem Cell Research

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Jonathan Bruno

Ms. Greggs

Eng 101-021


Research Contains Adult Stem Cells, No Embryos Allowed

Stem cell research has been argued about for quite some time now. People are against it because it is the destruction of a human embryo to benefit other people. Stem cells may be embryonic or adult, somatic. It has been said that stem cells can replace cell tissue that have been damaged or destroyed by some type of sickness or wound and copy themselves over and over again for a long period of time. People believe that the embryo is not considered life. Unfortunately, most people have not been informed of another kind of stem cell research: Adult (somatic) stem cell research. This argument is to show that somatic stem cell research is a better way to go than embryonic stem cell research.

Embryonic stem cell research is a way of attaining stem cells. The way embryonic stem cells are creates are when a sperm cell and egg cell come together they become an embryo. After around five days of development blastocyst, which is a ball of up to 100 cells that do not have a specific task. These cells can be taken out of the embryo to be manipulated to be whatever one wants. This also destroys the embryo and takes away any chance of life that it could get. Many people do not like this type of stem cells. Many conservatives and Christians say this is taking of a life since they believe that life starts at conception. Joseph Panno says in his book titled Stem cell research medical applications and ethical controversy “There is no way to remove cells from the ICM of a blastocyst without killing the embryo”. This means that this is the fate of all embryonic stem cells that have been used in all that have been used for testing. It shows how tha t the donor will not survive. Different from embryonic stem cell, in somatic stem cells the host does not die.

There is another type of stem cell research. It is called somatic (adult) stem cell research. Somatic stem cells are adult cells that are used to replace and replenish cells that are continually lost by depletion and damage. They are already created in the human body and can only replenish the same type of cells as it started out with. One of the ways that makes somatic stem cells different from embryonic stem cells is that somatic stem cells are from adult human beings. There is no proven technique to turn adult stem cells into any other cell other than their tissue of origin, to date. For example, there is no proven method to turn blood stem cells into brain stem cells. On the other hand, embryonic stem cells have the ability to turn into any type of cell and therefore, have more potential for scientific use.

There are many ways that somatic stem cells benefit more than embryonic stem cells. there a lot of diseases that used to be considered incurable such as cancer, Parkinson’s disease, and Sickle Cell Anemia, can be treated with somatic stem cells, not embryonic. Since that somatic stem cells are within the patient, they can be used in the treatment of wounds, diseases, or injuries. Also because that it is the patients’ own body making these somatic stem cells, they would not be rejected by the immune system. The only benefit that embryonic stem cells have is that the stem cells extracted from the embryo do not have a specific task and can be manipulated to turn into any type of cell.

The disadvantages of adult stem cell research are, unlike embryonic stem cells, they cannot manipulate the cell to any specificity. There are many more disadvantages with embryonic stem cell research. One of them is that the embryonic stem cell donor has a high chance of being rejected because there is a chance that the blood type won’t match, or the body will receive it as a virus and fight it off. Another disadvantage is that embryonic stem cells have the tendency to grow uncontrollably causing tumors or even cancers. This can cause severe damage to the body. Also embryonic stem cells cannot be helped to treat diseases that cannot be cured. One other disadvantage is that it can help push for abortions to be more prequent. It can be argued that the aborted babies can be used to take out embryonic stem cells. The last disadvantage is that this destroys a life from being born. Many liberals believe that this is not a life. Unfortunately Christians and other conservatives believe



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