Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research

1625 Words Dec 17th, 2015 7 Pages
In the Declaration on the Production and the Scientific and Therapeutic Use of Human Embryonic Stem Cells, the Pontifical Academy for Life presents the field of stem cell research with a statement regarding the official Roman Catholic position on the moral aspects of acquiring and using human embryonic stem cells. They have declared that it is not morally legitimate to produce or use human embryos as a source of stem cells, nor is it acceptable to use stem cells from cell lines already established. Thus, bringing up the conflicting topic concerned with the point in time in which a human embryo becomes more than a simple mass of cells, but a human individual with a well defined identity. Gerard Magil and William B. Neaves, in their paper Ontological and Ethical Implications of Direct Nuclear Reprogramming has conflicted the Academy’s position on stem cell research with an alternative understanding of adult stem cells. In what follows, I will argue that the Academy does not adequately defend the Church’s standpoint on stem cell research. However, I will also suggest that even if the Church’s position were accepted, this would not provide an adequate solution to the ethical question revolving around stem cell research.
In order to rightly investigate the position defined in the Declaration on the Production and the Scientific and Therapeutic Use of Human Embryonic Stem Cells a summary must first be presented. The Academy outlines and endorses the Roman Catholic Church’s…
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