Pros And Cons Of Genetic Engineering

1101 WordsSep 29, 20175 Pages
Genetic engineering brings about great and marvelous things, yet it raised many ethical issues. Some encourage research, while others oppose against such a bizarre idea. Their arguments revolve around impacts on the environment, humans, and social values. This paper seeks to give an account of these issues and present a possible moral compromise. Ecological problems may be caused when genetically engineered species are introduced. It may offset the natural balance of a system and may even lead to endangering different species. Furthermore, it may limit biodiversity of an environment, potentially creating a large impact on surrounding organisms (Patra). Also, accidents may happen in the process of genetically altering a bacteria or virus,…show more content…
CRISPR-Cas9 may then also cut out those similar sequences, causing transformations, mutations, or even cell death (MO, E). A Chinese research team has applied this technique on a human embryo, only to face similar results. The goal of the project is to modify an embryo in an attempt to cure a fatal blood disorder known as beta thalassemia--a disorder that results in excessive destruction of red blood cells. Out of the 86 embryos used, 71 survived, and 54 of the 71 were genetically tested. The test revealed that only 28 of the 54 were successfully spliced, and that only a fraction of those contained the replacement genetic material. Furthermore, the team also found a large number of off target mutations (Cyranoski). This suggests that the use of CRISPR-Cas9, or even similar techniques, is still very immature and poses a high risk with a low rate of success. And even if the technique has come to perfection, it would still cause some social issues. Out of the three main issues, “Playing God” remains the most controversial in social values. What is life and how do you identify life becomes a common topic in scientific journals. Many of these peer-reviewed articles differ from one another. Some say life starts at the time of fertilization, while others say that life starts when the primitive streak is observed. Papers, articles, and researches are done to define
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