9/11/2005

Xenotransplantation

There are thousands of people losing hope on a daily basis of receiving necessary organs that will prolong their mortal life. Scientists are working on the process of transplanting organs from animals to humans. Currently there are five times more patients needing organs than there are organs available (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2005/09/10/nba10.xml&sSheet=/news/2005/09/10/ixhome.html). The concern of ethics may be brought up. Personally, I feel that if the patient is in such dier need and is willing to risk the chance of becoming infected with various animal viruses then the individual should be able to make that decision. However, my concern is whether this will lead to an increase in the cloning of animals in order to produce prime organs for humans. This is where science needs to draw the line. Research and development is key in any organization. In fact billions of dollars are spent each year in this category and we benefit greatly from that. Yes, I appreciate new innovations, but I do not think we should start altering animals in order to make a "preferred match" for a transplant patient.

3 comments:

destiny said...

Cloning is a very intersting subject. I am undecisive on what I think about it. Cloning animals is completely different from cloning humans in my mind, but both issues should be looked at in the same light. It's pretty freaky to think about scientists cloning human beings. If you ever get the chance go watch the new movie "The Island." It gives a totally tripped out idea of cloning.

Ryan said...

Everytime when human had big innovations, we often needed to overcome "taboo". If this technology spead out, nobody would feel cloning animal is a problem. Probably human cloning would be not that rare or taboo thing anymore.

Dr. Tufte said...

-2 on Connor's post for a poorly formatted link and a spelling error.

-1 on Destiny's comment for inventing a new word.

One of the issues with research on embryonic stem cells is that this is the substitute for xenotransplantation. So, we will have to live with one or the other.

There could be more ManEc here. In particular, you could point out that there is a demand for (morally problematic) embryonic stem cell research because it is a substitute for (physically problematic) xenotransplantation.