Stem Cell Use and Research Essay

590 Words3 Pages
a. Stem cells are a very unique and useful medical advancement. The basic idea of a stem cell is: A cell that is able to differentiate into a specialized cell type. These are different from other cells, because each organ and body system has unique cells for their functions (Like how blood has red and white blood cells, while muscles have cardiac, smooth, and skeletal muscle cells). Stem cell aren’t specialized for any function or organ yet, but are able to differentiate into a unique cell type when needed.

b. Furthermore, stem cells come from two main sources: Embryo, and Adult tissues. Adult stem cells are found in the body after embryonic development. they lie dormant or unable to divide until activated by an injury or disease. They
…show more content…
c. Diseases that benefit from the use of stem cells: Cancer, down syndrome, alzheimer's, and possibly sickle cell disease. Diseases that can be treated by the use of stem cells: some forms of cancer, type 1 diabetes, lupus, multiple sclerosis, and even rheumatoid arthritis.

d. There are a lot of moral and ethical issues raised when using stem cells. When harvesting embryonic stem cells scientist destroy the blastocyst before it can develop into a person. People also believe harvesting stem cells from an embryo is like murder, or abortion. Another issue people have is the creation of chimeras: an organism with both human and animal cells and tissues. Stem cell research sometimes require injecting human stem cells in animals or vise versa. Some people are against the creation of an organism that is “part human” or a human that is “part animal”. Embryo stem cell harvesting has been made illegal in most european countries. In the U.S. it is illegal for the government to fund the research of stem cell lines that were created after August 2001.

e. Positive effects of stem cell research are treatments of cell diseases, the ability to generate specific organs when needed. Also the ability to generate more cells to organs where cells can’t necessarily divide. Negative effects are ethically based like the fact that the use of embryonic stem cells require harvesting and destroying human embryos. Another is the idea that stem cell
Get Access