Genetic Engineering And Gene Therapy Essay examples

2176 Words Nov 17th, 2014 9 Pages
6,000: The estimated number of genetic diseases that are effortlessly passed through generations that can debilitate a life, or can cause pre-mature death ("Hope Through Knowledge"). Imagine if these 6,000 diseases could simply be avoided before birth or perhaps even before conception. In the world of medicine today, this is nearly achievable. As the human genome has been decoded, it is human nature to attempt to repair genetic errors. Through genetic engineering and gene therapy, genetic diseases can be reversed and avoided. Gene therapy is the "manipulation of someone 's genetic material to prevent or treat disease". This is possible by replacing an absent or mutated gene with a working gene, by repairing a mutated gene, or by activating or deactivating a mutated gene. These three possible manipulations of the genome can be done either on a somatic cell, or on a germ-line cell. Gene therapy on a somatic cell alters genes to treat a pre-existing disorder, but the alterations are not inheritable. This means offspring may still suffer from the disorder. Germ line gene therapy, although not possible yet, would eliminate genetic disorders from potential generations and could even eradicate genetic disorders as a whole (Vaughn 526). As expected, this complex procedure is paired with multifaceted ethical concerns. Is it immoral for parents to not even attempt to prevent a disease for their child? Dan W. Brock states it would not wrong the child if they were born with a…

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