Stem Cell Research: A Necessary Move Forward

Mahin Chowdhury, Staff Writer

Stem cell research is a relatively new technology that takes primitive human cells and develops them into many of the 220 varieties of cells in the human body, including blood cells and brain cells. Some scientists and researchers have great hope for this research and its ability to uncover treatments and possibly even cures for some of the worst diseases including heart disease, diabetes, and neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Given the potential to relieve the suffering of hundreds of thousands of people, I believe that this research should go on.

The controversy surrounding the morality of stem cell research is often centered on the creation, usage, and destruction of the human embryos. Along with this objection, stem cell research also gives rise to fear of human cloning and serious concerns over the ethics of conducting scientific research on embryos. Various groups such as religious figures view an embryo as an early-aged human life. As a result, they are concerned with the rights and status of the embryo, and often go so far as to equate such research with murder because of the embryos’ destruction.

Since science views embryos as not yet human, I feel that any harm inflicted on them does not weigh in on the moral worth of the action. However, the development of treatments that could potentially cure conditions such as Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s would weigh in on its moral worth. As a result, the prevention of suffering made possible by stem cell research and its potential medical advancements far outweigh any harm inflicted on the embryos, even if the embryos were some day given moral standing. Thus, I believe that, the morality of the usage of the stem cells cannot be called into question.