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The scientific origin of designer babies - Research Paper Example

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Pre-implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) is a scientific procedure that allows the screening of an embryo to determine desirable and non-desirable traits. The development of PGD traces back to Robert Edwards and Richard Gardner in 1967. Since then, PGD has undergone modifications to enhance compatibility with human needs. …
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The scientific origin of designer babies
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Download file to see previous pages Ole Peter Galaasen in his article “future of designer babies” attributes the current advancements made in PGD to advancements made in molecular genetics and reproductive technology (1). The future of the designer babies in regard to the current scientific advancements seems bright. Basis of Controversies in Religion & Science: Saying that the subject of designer babies is controversial is an understatement. Even controversial scholars such as Satoshi Kanazawa have expressed their doubts over this issue. In his article “Common misconceptions about science III: Designer babies” Kanazawa states: “Even if scientists acquired perfect knowledge on the manipulations associated to the human genome, a “designer baby” requires traits comprising of heritability not less than 100% …seeing as the traits studied such as intelligence, personality and height fall short of the specified 100%, there is no guarantee of a perfect designer baby. Parents will still depend on a natural course of genetic “events” and simply put their faith on probability” (2). This shows that genetic selection from a scientific realm perspective has its huddles. Most traits parents would like to modify in their offspring such as intelligence are subject to the influence of multiple of genes. Scholars are at war with themselves in regard to the political, religious and scientific debates sparked by designer babies. Zahedi and Larijani in their article “Medical Genetic Ethics: Islamic Views and Considerations in Iran” point out that Islam as much as other religion appreciates the benefits of technological and scientific advancements. Legal and health issues aside, what do scriptures and doctrines dictate? To this question Zahedi and Larijani assert that the issue of reproduction remains a sacred one. All scientific advancements in regard to reproduction are subject to rigorous religious scrutiny (1). They point out social and medical ethical issues such as fairness of use of genetic information acquired for medical trials (50). They further indicate the fear of the current medical trials aimed at the betterment of human life’s turning hazardous. In particular, they mention cloning stating “Cloning is subject to substantial prohibition due to the majority of Muslim reference decrees” (51). Kunich, an avid supporter of cloning, makes reference to religious decrees as superstition used to instigate fear: “Bad facts make bad law! If there ever was a classic example of this it is the human cloning turmoil, in which science and fact so often overwhelmed by superstition and fear” (137). Kunich reflects upon the negative debates against cloning and to extent designer babies as offensive ideas. He argues that laws against cloning do not derive from facts but rather on unsupported ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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