Stem cell research is a controversial subject in the United States, with those supporting and the opponents of the technology being politically divided. For instance, the people who align to conservative ideologies see stem cell studies and technology, especially embryo stem cell research, with less favor. The various administrations in America have been at crossroads to either support or delay the research. The opposers of the technology are the prominent opposers to the current authorization given to the research work and innovative medical proposals. Although various successes and benefits, including cures that save lives and treatment plans for people. Nevertheless, stem cells are regarded as body cells that are not specialized for a given function. Still, they can rejuvenate themselves through the division process even after a long period of dormancy (Irie et al. 25). The potential for the stem cells to be beneficial is significant since they can become tissues under certain physiological conditions to perform specific functions. The research in stem cells has determined the way scientists would activate the cells and have them perform specialized functions as tissues or organs. Some stem cells can be sourced from tissues of the embryo, which come unused and are usually donated from processes such as in-vitro fertilization therapy. Unspecialized cells can also be produced with some organs and tissues within the body. The cells are called somatic, which grow into tissues, organs, and eventually into a fully functional organism.
Researchers in the US established the first human embryonic stem cell in 1998 with this success in science, having triggered ethical and policy arguments that have persisted to date. Religious leaders, government entities, scientists, and bioethicists have continued to differ on whether the studies promise and threaten the moral perspective of the people’s existence. Genetic scientists and other medical research experts are much excited about the new success of human embryonic stem cells studies. According to Pittenger et al., most scientists believe that stem cells offer an excellent opportunity for people to learn about various illnesses such as cancers that may be cured using the new technology (2). In their support efforts, many research scientists and other stakeholders have claimed that the experiments generate medical solutions for many complex ailments such as heart disease and certain types of cancers. Although many of the opponents of the new technology know about the benefits of the same, their main issues surround the ethical and moral aspects of the research. In any honest debate, the focus has been on the moral angle of killing the embryo for the sake of benefiting other people.
Further, the research’s ethical issues are essential as they raise important issues that the people concerned with finding the solution and addressing the case have not been addressed. After years of narrow discussions, it is now time for the discussion to expand and include the policy issues and the diver ethical significance of the technology. Many policies and related ethical issues surrounding stem cell research apply to biomedical studies. Such concerns regarding the appropriateness of the priorities to the study and providing the much need resources for the studies are crucial aspects of the research (Sipp et al., 455). The talk about stem cell research offers people, especially those in the medical field, to investigate various policy and ethically related issues brought about by medical advancement. In this case, stem cell research is placed in the broader context of policy and ethics by considering scientific integrity issues, resource allocation and the study’s cost, and the civic discourse’s responsibilities about the controversies in biomedicine. Nevertheless, despite the arguments, stem cell research provides a grand promise that leads to a better conception of the basic mechanisms of human development and differentiation, focusing on providing new therapeutic approaches to diseases such as cancer and diabetes, among other complex ailments.
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Support for stem cell research in the US
Currently, stem cell research has been allowed in the US. With this, researchers have observed a great potential in stem cell treatments if the study outcomes are fully adopted and receive enough resources. Diseases like some types of cancers could be cured easily using stem cell technology within this generation. Besides, there have been incredible advancements in restoring eyesight and treating burns using the new approach (Volarevic et al. 36). Today, we cannot imagine a world free of deadly diseases such as cancer or Alzheimer’s that affect the quality of life and cause high mortality. Scientists doing pioneer research have observed that the future of stem cell research is an imagination and an attainable reality that will see a change in the medical world. The government is responsible for supporting the considered preservation of health by supporting stem cell research. The obligation by the government does not fluctuate based on the political inclination at the moment. Still, it should be based on the merits of science and the benefits that stem cell research will bring to the population. In this regard, there is also the need to continue supporting this initiative since lack of it will be detrimental to public health, with the blame falling on the shoulders of those in political power for impeding scientific progress.
Scientific progress needs legislators and regulators have realized and appreciate the study’s value and hence provide support to the formation of related regulations to solve the current medical issues. Scientists through organizations such as the ISSCR have developed policy programs that champion the advancement of stem cell study through the development of policies and initiatives that will advocate for the adoption of the technology by the governed. The organization also broadly supports increased research funding and ensures the education of the patients and the public about stem cells and their benefits to the public (Poulos et al. 3). besides, the advocacy efforts should not be made by the ISSCR alone. Still, they should be a concern of all governments and the public, focusing on supporting basic research, evidence-based regulation of science, responsible research freedoms, and increased scientific funding. Also, there is a need to promulgate research and clinical practices to ensure integrity in science experiments and ethical consideration in clinical practice when implementing stem cell research for institutions and regulators. This approach is essential to mitigate the controversy with stem cell research and encourage using human embryos and stem cells through properly laid guidelines.
In opposing the stem cell research in the US
There are four main reasons why stem cells research should not be allowed to continue in the US including; first, the study is expensive. Secondly, it takes away resources that could be used in other broader health issues. Thirdly, it interferes with the natural genomes, and lastly, it is an immoral practice that allows the creation and distraction of embryos. First, the research is costly and can only be available for wealthy people in the US, and hence, it is discriminatory. Although many of the most successful medical advancements have been regarded as expansive, they are cheap, depending on their use. For instance, a bone marrow transplant is an expensive affair but is used to cure various diseases, which reduces the medical costs that could have been incurred in general (Hyun et al. 169). In the face of increased stem cell therapy, stem cell therapies may need to lead to cures for many ailments that could otherwise be expensive to manage, but that is not the case. At the moment, few Americans can afford stem cells standpoint. Many prefer to take the extended and slow therapy route for their different ailments than the one-off stem cell transplant that will cost them a lot with no conclusive assurance of a cure.
Secondly, stem cell research moves away from other health concerns affecting the people. It is usually challenging to state which form of study will raise the public’s benefits and whether it is worth spending a lot of resources that could otherwise be used on other urgent health issues that affect the vulnerable populations. According to Riezzo, the essential research work from which the stem cells technology came is development biology, whose use could not have been foreseen as a medical issue shortly. Further, the studies into the various techniques of cell programming and the need for expansion of the different cell lineage may lead to an advancement in scientific knowledge. Still, they will not have an overall value to the general medical practice. This argument is essential and economically oriented and is also affected by the political undertones and the wellbeing of the people. Since the ethical topic is based on religious beliefs and philosophies, it cannot be used and accepted by the majority’s view but by looking at the facts. In the US society today, many medical advancements have had a significant impact on the larger population and hence reduced the cost of health care for many. However, stem cells research, which has not yet been conclusive, drains the relatively limited resources allocated to the health docket that could be used in other essential health issues that affect the people.
Thirdly, stem cell research interferes with the gene and includes acts of the scientists’ taking over the roles of God. The argument in this regard reflects the religious perspective of stem cell research, where the church holds that everything has been created with divine precision and should never be altered in any way. Such a perspective views stem cell research and technology as a hindrance against God’s will (Poulos et al. 4). Although, since tike in history, it has not been possible to continue with the notion of genetic manipulation of foods and find solutions for diseases, which has broken from what has been going on throughout the revolution, religious leaders still hold on the religious beliefs. In this case, the perspective is the scientist’s attempt to interfere with the work of God where religious believers see as wrong. Although this view is widely not upheld by many religious people who believe that God’s creation is a trajectory and a start of a process where humans can use their knowledge to solve world issues, this happens through a process that creates a realm brought by reality that enables itself. Through stem cells research, people are encouraged to support initiatives that will allow them to get the world to a perfect state as scientists play God in this instance. Therefore, based on religious beliefs, stem cell research should not be entertained as it goes against the moral tenets of society.
Overall, stem cell research should be supported with regulatory clarity and specificity to avoid controversies and address the issues raised by the proponents of the technology, including the religious leaders. Regulatory bodies must maintain a clear, comprehensive, and more approachable framework by the government regarding cell therapy interventions. The bodies should also ensure that they enforce the framework of stem cell research robustly and consistently. The gaps within the governance role of oversight have created a state of ambiguity regarding the policies applied in this type of scientific research. The grey zones that arise are usually designed to provide a space for the spread of ineffective interventions. Stem cell research is essential as it allows more effective treatment of serious human ailments and alleviates many people’s suffering from illnesses such as diabetes and injuries to the spine. For instance, the transplant of the bone marrow has taken place for decades, involving the infusion of stem cells. Therefore, research grounded on the embryo stem cells that produce outcomes for the therapy for various ailments and has been able to generate new approaches about the fundamental ways in which there is a greater understanding of the disease causes and how to treat them. The bottom line is that biomedical research takes a long time, but in the end, it yields results and new insights into treatments. In this regard, research into new ways of medicine should never be stopped but instead supported by all means to make it a success for posterity.