Is Gene Editing on Embryos Going Against Nature or Helping to Prevent Miscarriages?
by zoepaes on September 12, 2016 - 9:37pm
To begin with, the article I chose is named “UK scientists ready to genetically modify human embryos” written by Ian Sample in The Guardian online newspaper. Furthermore, this article explains that some scientists in the UK want to get approval to genetically modify human embryos to enhance the research on miscarriages and to understand it better which will maybe help find the true causes behind it. This could lead to genetically editing embryos in the future to reduce miscarriages. They mostly want to improve fertility treatments by using gene editing and during the research process the used embryos would be donated by couples who have extra after IVF treatment and it would be destroyed after 7 days.
This ethical issue leads to contradiction between the values of technological advancement and research versus human nature. In other words, if it is seen as something positive, it can really help humans acquire knowledge and prevent miscarriages. This advantages’ the moral claim to always act for the greater good because doing research on certain embryos can help a lot of people. In other words, the ethical point of view of this is that it can help a lot of people to have children effectively without worrying too much about having a miscarriage.
However, it can be seen as unethical to start a life, to modify it and then to simply destroy it. By many, it can be viewed very badly and considered like they are killing lives. Also, it is totally going against human nature because they would be modifying the gene which is the basis of life itself and what makes a human, human. Also, if ever there’s a mistake in the modification, it would be passed on from generation to generation which can be very dangerous. This point of view advantages’ the moral claim that human life is fundamentally valuable and that people should not be used as a means to an end. More specifically, the embryo is too valuable to be used and modified and that it shouldn’t be used to accomplish something else.
To conclude, personally, I don’t really have a clear position about genetically modifying human embryos for research, but I think that it’s mostly unethical because it is very unnatural and I think this could lead to modifying human embryos in the future as a way to keep the baby alive when it should be a miscarriage and I think that’s going a bit too far because it could basically be considered as non human since it was modified and there could be so many complications that could arise from this. I think it needs to stop somewhere otherwise sometime in the future the genes will be completely be modified to try to make the perfect humans. More precisely, there’s a reason everything is as it is and sometimes we should just let it be without trying to always change everything because we never know the consequences that could come from that. Will it be too late once we realize we’re going too far?
Sample, Ian. “UK scientists ready to genetically modify human embryos.” The Guardian, 13 January 2016, https://www.theguardian.com/science/2016/jan/13/uk-scientists-ready-to-genetically-modify-human-embryos. Accessed 11 September 2016.