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Transcript of Designer Babies
Somatic Modification cannot be inherited.
It is the addition of genes in the cell 2 type of Genetic Engineering in Humans: #2. Germ line Modification
Germ line Modification can be inherited.
It is the alteration of the gametes or zygotes by putting in a gene. What are Designer Babies? Babies whose genes have been artificially selected, using Genetic Engineering, to obtain a specific phenotype or to ensure the presence/absence of particular genes, i.e. hair color, eye color, down syndrome etc. Designer babies require In-vitro fertilization.
Female eggs are obtained from the uterus of a woman and fertilized with male sperm in a Petri-dish to ensure the union of eggs and sperms. The embryo is put back into the woman’s uterus. Another legal technique is Pre-implantation Genetic Diagnosis or PGD.
When the embryo created is at its eight-cell stage, some cells are taken from embryo and examined for genetic disorder. The healthy embryo is implanted back into the uterus, while the defective ones are not. The embryos that do not provide the desired stem cells are discarded.
The embryos destroyed in a laboratory, are human beings too.
"We as a society do not have the right to begin human life or to destroy it. Human life is not a commodity; a baby is not a product; an embryo is not a cluster of exploitable cells.” The Controversy: From a Religious Prospective Embryos are human beings. Genetic engineering has created an obsessive search for the “perfect child.”
Instead of choosing the physical characteristics and traits of their children, parents should unconditionally accept offspring as a gift of God.
The objection to the idea of designer babies is that there is a real sense of playing God. A child should not be created specifically to save another person's life, instead they should be welcomed and loved unconditionally regardless of their instrumental value in helping someone else.
Even non-Catholic philosophers argue that human beings should not be treated as the means for another person to attain his or her ends.
Creating life to serve someone else, especially when the other life may be rejected because it did not meet the parents' needs, is an action that should be condemned. Children should be loved and cherished for themselves and not what they can do for others. Human beings are not God. Expensive ( roughly $18 000 and above)
Only rich people will be able to eliminate genetic diseases, leading to an imbalance between rich and poor people.
Biodiversity in society will dramatically decrease, which results in a long time disaster.
Reduces the child’s freedom to choose.
People who are genetically different will become outcasts and even more socially rejected, (rejected by society because they have genetic defects. i.e. p.i.p kids, homosexuals, individuals with down syndrome, cancer etc.)
Pros and Cons CONS Decreases the chance of acquiring serious diseases.
Reduces the cost and emotional strain of looking after an ill child
Could potentially help save lives (Spare part children, donating healthy organs to others)
Could determine a child's athletic ability, intelligence, beauty, eye colour, hair colour etc. PROS CANADA
Only two advanced reproductive technologies are legally allowed:
1) In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)
2) Pre-implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) UK
British law says that parents are only able to select the sex of their child if there is a substantial risk that a gender-related genetic disease could be passed on.
'Family balancing', where the reasons for sex selection are social rather than medical, is not allowed at licensed clinics.
At the moment in the UK, it is legal to select an embryo for its genes using pre-implantation genetic diagnosis. What is Legal?