With recent advances in medical science and technology, couples are now able to genetically modify embryos to create their ideal children. From gender, to eye color, hair color, height, body shape, and more, modern parents have the ability to leave little up to nature and take the designing of their child into their own hands. Whether it is ethical, or not, to engineer designer babies is a highly controversial topic with numerous pros and cons. Pre-Implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) is the contentious technology fertility specialists use to engineer what are commonly referred to as designer babies. There are countless experts, scientists, and physicians that fall on either side of the designer baby argument.
These are just a couple of the very important questions raised by this issue. As the debate to whether eugenics should be allowed rages on, the technology comes closer to making this possibility into a reality. The way in which this new technology will be used is by correcting genetic problems in embryos. Extensive DNA testing will soon be able to show awaiting parents an accurate view of their embryoís genes. This will allow any defects of the child to be seen.
By definition, a “Designer Baby” is a genetically modified, unborn child. Basically, they are children who have been “designed” with the desired sex or characteristics. Scientists continue to learn more about the human genome, and as they do reproductive technology continually advances to levels that we never imagined. Researchers linked to Bionet point out: Advanced reproductive techniques involve using InVitro Fertilization (IVF), which is where eggs are fertilized by sperm in ‘test tubes’ outside the mother’s body in a laboratory. The type of sperm (X or Y) that fertilizes an egg can be chosen, which is used to determine the sex and genes of the baby.
There is future research to gain more information on why there is sometimes reproductive failure. This new research will help a great deal in understanding why an egg and sperm cannot reproduce.
“Plot Summary for My Sister’s Keeper”. IMDB. Web. 25 May 2010. . My Sister’s Keeper.
The main purpose of the HGP was originally for the use of preventing inherent diseases. However, as studies continue to progress, increased opportunities arise for genetically altering the unborn. You are now able to choose the sex of you child before they are born with great accuracy. What is on the horizon now, is the possibility of designing your child to be “perfect';. Over the years, there has been heated, ethical controversy on each of these issues, especially designer babies.
Because of the risks involved, many people are having prenatal tests to examine the genetic makeup of their fetuses. For many couples, this option... ... middle of paper ... ...able to cure diseases we never dreamed possible, and the lives of humans will be improved eminently. References Cited Arc. Genetic Discrimination. Obtained from WWW 10/09/97: http://www.the.arc.org/depts/gbr03.html Botkin, Jeffrey R. Fetal Privacy and Confidentiality.
Aldous Huxley envisioned a future in which natural reproduction in mankind would be eliminated due to advances in fertility technology in his 1932 novel, Brave New World. He believed expecting parents would decide in advance their child's physical appearance as well as his or her mental abilities, including height, eye color, hair color, and gender. According to Huxley, embryos could be genetically altered to meet their requests. Though this may seem unreal and unlikely, some scientists claim the technology will be available to do this very soon("Designer Babies" 1). "In the next several decades, new biotechnology may allow parents to create 'built-to-order' babies by manipulating genetic material" (Smith 1).
The Christian Science Monitor magazine reported. “Recent technology has allowed scientists to be able to map the DNA of a fetus. This new technology might allow parents to prenatally change disease-causing genes or even pick certain characteristics they would like their child to have”. However, this new technology is making the society discuss about the ethical issues that involves genetic engineering. On the other hand, altering the human genome demonstrated that could help to prevent hereditary diseases, but it is used as to create "designer babies" with enhanced appearance, athletic ability, and intelligence is completely unethical and unnatural.
Artificial Sex Selection in Today’s Fertility Clinics Thesis Statement: The method of sorting cryopreserved sperm for the purpose of separating the X and Y chromosomes has been an ongoing process for many years. However, recently this method has become a modern preconception technique in which numerous applications for safe and effective selection procedures now exist in clinical practices. I have chosen to explore how currently these uses have broadened to areas where many of us might see as a moral or ethical issue. These uses might even be linked to a larger scheme of pre-embryonic chromosome attenuation such as the Human Genome Project. General History of the Sperm Sorting Technique As we approach the new Millennium, science continues to make greater advancements in the areas of fertility and genetics.