The Pros And Cons Of Somatic Cell Therapy

1523 Words 7 Pages
There are many types of therapies that are up for arguments but the ones I feel are of upmost importance are somatic vs. germline; therapy vs. enhancement (Peters). I support treating someone actively living with disease to alleviate pain and suffering through the use of somatic cell therapy. As a scientist and medical professional, it is our duty to help the patient. What I am strongly against is germ line therapy, the altering of genetic material of an embryo, a human not yet created, in order to “fix” congenital defects before birth is unethical and immoral. Therapy to correct an issue or mutation or genes is different than genetic enhancement. This is where athletes are using their own bodies’ red blood cells to gain endurance before …show more content…
He believes that it should be the parent’s choice to enhance their child’s mental or physical characteristics. He claims germ line therapy isn’t any different than choosing a reproductive mate that would be best suited for you and your unborn children. He claims that Americans opinions on cloning and genetic engineering are fallacious and believes education is the key to swaying their beliefs. He wants to ban such terms as “test tube baby,” “genetic engineering,” and “cloning.” These terms have too much of an emotional connection, giving them a negative connotation. Pence would like to replace these words with an emotionless one, what he calls, “somatic cell gene transfer,” or SCGT. He continues to say though germ line therapy has yet to be achieved, nevertheless it offers exciting predictions of preventing some genetic disorders.
The outlandish comparison that choosing a mate is the same as changing genes in utero is laughable. When a mate is typically chosen, he/she is chosen out of love and companionship, not out of some scientific theory that their genetics would work well with hers to procreate. There isn’t a genetic marker checklist a woman gives a man before consummation to be sure all the undesired characteristics aren’t in the genepool. Likewise, she isn’t choosing a reproductive mate based on looks, athletic ability or scholarly
…show more content…
He claims that germ line therapy could prove great risks and abundant detriment for future generations. Germ line therapy is permanent during the lifetime of the affected individual, but also this new “transgene” becomes heritable and is transferred to the other members of upcoming generations. Gert also uses statistics from The Human Genome project, which includes mapping the complete genome. This shows where each gene is located, ie: which chromosome it’s on, but where on that chromosome we can find it. This should help hone in on such diseases such as cystic fibrosis, as well as conditions like some cancers and heart disease. Knowing where to find such illnesses on the chromosomes would enable scientists to circumvent and remedy these disorders. Germ line therapy has been used in mammals for greater than fifteen years and human trials will be in the near future. Scientists were warned to stop giving false hope after a study conducted by the National Institute of Health (NIH), surveyed 106 different clinical therapy trials within a five year period, using over 590 patients, stating there is no clinical evidence proving efficacy of any gene therapy treatments (Rifikin). Michael Fumento, an author and journalist, believes that within twenty years, medicine will be improved and streamlined, not to mention completely different than it is today. Gene therapies will revolutionize medicine, as we know it. Fumento claims

Related Documents