Stem Cells

Researches of stem cells are nowadays one of the most interesting, the most promising and contradictive area of discussions and actually medical researches. Stem cells are known to be cells that are able to become “to become any type of cell in the body”. Simply saying, stem cells are able to grow in brain, liver, kidney cell. A new method of creating stem cells has been developed. The new method prefers not to involve human embryos, but using adult skin cells to be fused. In the result skin cells would be converted into stem cells. Nevertheless, the method is far away from being implemented, though modern technique will provide in the near future alternative to the methods. However, such method remains controversial. (Taber 2005)

Many research agree that development of the  new method would open new doors before medicine and is able to re-shape scientific approaches and theories, though severe limitation are provided and funding for stem cell researches is stringently limited. Earlier the only way to create stem cell was to create “cloned blastocyst by fusing the patient’s cell with a denucleated egg cell”. It means that stem cell could be generated from the blastocyst and then would be used in medical researches. It is seen that new method of creating stem cell would solve many problems. (Taber 2005)

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Nevertheless, there are opposite viewpoints regarding the problem of stem cell generation. Some scientists say that creating of new human embryo must be prohibited, because it morally unacceptable and religiously unethical, whereas others claim that stem cell researches are able to save many lives, because stem cells are able to convert into cells of any kind. Furthermore, George Bush, the President of USA, announced that federal funding of researches had to be limited. Thus he has blocked the development of one of the most promising areas of medical researches. Scientists are advised to concentrate more on the proven methods of stem cell creation. (Taber 2005)

It was reported that scientists from South Korea under the leadership of Hwang had significantly contributed medical science by creating the first embryo from the stem cell. Therefore, the stem cell researches are advanced greatly, though they are still involved in lots of controversy in scientific area because of oppositely different viewpoints. Nevertheless, it is known that stem cells are able to become any type of a body cell and it is believed that many diseases such as spinal cord injuries, Parkinson’s disease and many others will be treated. Stem cells are able to help even when cells in the body are irreparably damaged. Furthermore, scientists assert that stem cells are able even to withstand “rejection by the body’s immune system” and thus to make treatment more available. (Taber 2005)

The process used for embryo creating was called SCNT or somatic cell nuclear transfer. The first step of the process aimed at removing nuclei from egg cells. Those eggs were obtained by tearing making a small tear in the cell membrane. Microscopic tools were used as well to remove the nucleus. The next step aimed at inserting a skin cell into one of the patients and then fusing two cells with the purpose to cause dividing. Despite all difficulties, the process appeared to be successful and the first stem embryo was created.

Nevertheless, many critics consider cloning ethically incorrect and they claim no reason exists to create a human clone. Critics are worrying that embryo creating will result in increased efficiency stem cell production and many scientists will be thus tempted to repeat the experiment. It is though that the stem cell researches will lead to reproductive cloning and thus to laws violations. However, Hwang admitted that “such goals were the furthest thing from his mind”. Hwang even introduced the standing rule: no embryo is being developed for more than six days. It is apparent that Hwang and his scientific team managed to develop a unique method for creating stem cells. If stem cells were cloned from patients with genetic diseases, scientists would gain renewable sources of cells for further experiments. (David 1993)