Genetic testing has been a very controversial topic. While some people believe that genetic testing is completely right in any situation, others believe that it is completely wrong in any situation. However, both sides prove valid points of why genetic testing is both right and wrong. Genetic testing can be very good when it is being used for helpful reasons. However, genetic testing can also be very bad when it is used for the wrong reasons. Genetic testing is okay to do as long as it is being done for the right reasons and following good moral guidelines.
Normally, parents are aware that they might have a risk of having a baby with a genetic disability or disease and they usually seek advice from genetic counselors. Genetic counselors can assist parents in decisions about predictive testing, which can identify if a fetus has one or more altered genes when the effects do not typically appear until later in life. There are two types of predictive testing: presymptomatic tests and susceptibility tests. Before suggesting that clients do presymptomatic testing, the genetic counselor prepares their clients to accept the test results. ...
Genetic testing has become a highly controversial issue among both the general population and the scientific community. It is a process that exposes a person’s entire genome sequence, allowing it to be read and evaluated to identify potential risks for genetic diseases or diseases that could be passed onto offspring (Holt Productions, 2012). With thousands of genetic tests already being used, and more being established, it seems logical to put this growing technology to use. Some agree that it is a person’s right to know and understand his or her genetic makeup. However, others argue that, despite the benefits of genetic testing, caution should be used to carefully inspect the risks associated with this new technology.
In recent years, genetic testing has become a popular topic in the media. Usually involving cheek swabs, blood samples, or amniotic fluid samples, the procedure is relatively simple and can help diagnose genetic disorders, determine ideal medication types, or simply determine the patient’s heritage. It has saved many lives from cancer and other afflictions, but to say that genetic testing is always the correct choice is false. There are many issues with the tests, considering that they are new to the medical world. Genetic testing is mostly harmful because of privacy concerns, how underdeveloped it is, and the risk of it pushing a mother to abort her child.
Prenatal genetic testing is a controversial issue in early development. With more genes being identity and linked to particular disorders, more people are seeking more prenatal genetic testing. As technology develops to advance these tests and to make new tests, advantages and disadvantages become apparent. This comes with a more stable feeling of knowing the child’s health and the ability to catch any warning signs of major diseases or disorders early on, but this also can bring a sense of anxiety and worry for the soon-to-be parents. There is also an ethical dilemma with genetic testing.
As we approach the 21st century, we as a society are increasingly bombarded with technical advances. One such area of advancement is the research involved with the Human Genome Mapping Project (HGMP). HGMP is a multi-billion dollar world wide research collaboration interested in sequencing the entire human genome. Started on October 1, 1990, with a group of over 350 labs, and expected to finish within the next 5 to 7 years, the Human Genome Mapping Project has given rise to many important advancements and many discoveries about the genetic make-up of humans (Bylinsky, 1994). With these advances come many ethical questions and concerns. The ability to screen an individual for specific disease will, in the future, play a major role in each of our lives. Genetic screening is defined in Genethics, by Suzuki and Knudson (1990), as "the examination of the genetic constitution of an individual - whether a fetus, a young child or a mature adult - in search of clues to the likelihood that this person will develop or transmit a heritable defect or disease."
One of the particular areas of interest is prenatal genetics. In this field, many new and outstanding innovations have been made. A mother and father can now check for a large array of disorders that could occur in their child; sexual preference has now been shifted from the hands of a higher being to that of someone with a Ph.D.; and in the near future, a couple will possibly be able to choose the physical features of their child, such as hair color, eye color, etc. Scientifically speaking, all of these new options that parents have is amazing. Not only can they have a healthy baby, but one that is going to be stronger, and better looking. Yet, ethically speaking, many people would dislike the “playing” of God. And when it becomes possible to create a perfect child, what will prevent us in society from doing so? The field of genetics in prenatal situations has become very advanced over the past few years, yet many of these advancements have given arise to unethical applications.
The healthcare industry has come a long way in terms of technological advances. These advances have had significant benefits in diagnosis, treatment, and the way medicine is practiced today. Unfortunately, these technological advances also come with ethical issues and dilemmas the healthcare professionals must face.
Gene testing is the practice of testing individuals who show no symptoms to determine whether they carry genes that could cause them or their children to develop certain genetic diseases later in life. Gene screening is a very controversial topic because of the risks that come with it. Would you want to know if you’ll develop a life threatening disease later in life? Many individuals would want to know this, but some would not. Personally, I think gene testing is ethical under certain conditions.
There are several types of genetic tests that can give us a broad amount of information about ourselves, our parents and/or children (What is testing?). Personally, I see advantages and disadvantages to it. Anyone is able to find the probability of them having a disorder or disease and start dealing with before it gets to a lethal stage. For women, it is reassuring to know whether a disorder that they possess can be passed on to their children or not. They can also know whether their child is healthy or not before it is even born. It also impacts on how scientists deal with diseases since they are given a different output of the disease at its early stages and allows them to study it until a cure is found. But what happens when your private information goes public? People will be treated differently because of a high risk of having a cancer in the future. In your CV, your past experiences and your qualities will be accompanied by your genetics test results that inform the company whether you will be a risk to them in the future. A new kind of discrimination will be created in our society. A second major disadvantage to genetic testing is people using it for “superficial” purposes like changing children’s eye colors and other biological characteristics that should not be changes. Above the disadvantages are the benefits which are why I am all for the genetic testing for health-related purposes.
Scientific and technological advances are the products of man's inherent desire to improve the society in which he lives. Such progress often accompanies an expansion of intellectual boundaries. As one acquires knowledge, one also encounters new opportunities to be explored. This is true in the area of human genome research. The implications of The Human Genome Project and other attempts to further understand the human genetic code clearly demonstrate the basic principles of social benefit versus social cost. The desired effect is obviously one in which the benefits significantly outweigh the costs. The actual impact of such technology, however, remains only an estimate until this scientific advancement becomes a reality. It is out of this inability to predict how new technology may transform society that controversy arises. For if one estimates the value of knowledge and progress to ultimately influence society in a negative manner, then, perhaps such advancement should not be attempted. The Human Genome Project and other studies involving genetic research invite debate on the most controversial and highly moral issues that characterize and define the nature of life.
Prenatal DNA testing for birth defects itself is very good and beneficial for the parents. What the parents decide to do with the knowledge though is where it can become negative and a bad thing. If you decide to have the prenatal DNA testing done and you find out that your child is going to be born with Down Syndrome you will then have decide to if you are going to continue the pregnancy or not. If the parents decide to have an abortion the moral ramifications of this are the parents might feel guilt or regret for killing an innocent unborn child or they might be relieved that they do not have to raise what they might consider a burden. This is one way prenatal DNA testing can be negative but there are also ways it can be positive because not everyone decides to have an abortion. If parents decided to keep the baby they can prepared for the baby and the lifestyle they will have. The parents could speak to other parents who have raised a child with Down Syndrome and the parents will feel prepared and happy with their choice to bring their beautiful child into the world. These test can go both ways, you can find out that you are going to have a healthy baby but waiting for your results can also bring unnecessary stress and worry which is also not good for the baby. In the end the moral ramifications of the tests are determined by what you do with
Kolata, Gina. "Ethics Questions Arise as Genetic Testing of Embryos Increases." The New York Times. The New York Times, 03 Feb. 2014. Web. 18 Mar. 2014.
The Human Genome Project is the largest scientific endeavor undertaken since the Manhattan Project, and, as with the Manhattan Project, the completion of the Human Genome Project has brought to surface many moral and ethical issues concerning the use of the knowledge gained from the project. Although genetic tests for certain diseases have been available for 15 years (Ridley, 1999), the completion of the Human Genome Project will certainly lead to an exponential increase in the number of genetic tests available. Therefore, before genetic testing becomes a routine part of a visit to a doctor's office, the two main questions at the heart of the controversy surrounding genetic testing must be addressed: When should genetic testing be used? And who should have access to the results of genetic tests? As I intend to show, genetic tests should only be used for treatable diseases, and individuals should have the freedom to decide who has access to their test results.