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Transcript of Designer Babies
What is designer babies?
History of genetics
How do they create designer babies?
Pro and cons of designer babies
What are bioethics?
Which bioethic principles does it violate?
How designer babies can affect the future
Examples: My Sister's Keeper
Table of Contents
Do you know what Designer Babies are?
1952 A model of the DNA molecule was created by Francis Crick and James Watson
1957 Arthur Kornberg produces DNA in a test tube
History of Genetics
1978 Louis Brown is conceived through in vitro fertilization
1984 Gender selection of embryos is developed
1990 Gene therapy is used on patients for the first time
1991 Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority are established
1994 The Food and Drug Administration approves the first genetically engineered food, FlavrSavr tomatoes
1997 The first adult animal clone "Dolly the Sheep" is born
What is bioethics?
Rights of the child
1. Creating an embryo with in-vitro fertilization (IVF)
2. Removing a single cell from that embryo within the first 5 days of creation
3. Genetically testing the single cell removed
4. The parents decide whether to discard the embryo or implant it in the mother's womb
It takes $20,000 or more, if necessary, to extract and freeze a large number of eggs
Did you know?
Process of Designing Babies
Could be a good use for medical purposes
Prevents genetic diseases such as Down Syndrome, Alzheimer's, Huntington's Disease, etc.
Reduces the risk of inherited medical conditions such as obesity, diabetes, cancer, etc.
Increase human life span up to 30 years
May increase chance for success by being smarter, taller, better looking, etc.
Allows prospective parents to give their child genes that they do not carry
I believe that designer babies should not be allowed at all. It clearly violates a lot of the bio ethical principles
Do you think it is ethical to design a baby?
"If I've got a dozen embryos I could implant, and the ones i want to implant are the green-eyed ones, or the blond-haired ones, that's an extension of choices we think are perfectly acceptable -- and restricting them is a violation of our (reproductive rights)."- James Hughes, Transhumanist
My sister's Keeper
Marissa-Eve Ayala (Second child) was not conceived "just to use her body parts to save another child."
Marissa-Eve Ayala was conceived in love and with the hopes that a one-time bone marrow transplant would cure Anissa's leukemia, which it did.
In the fictional movie, Anna was conceived in love and with the hopes that her placental cord blood would provide the stem cells to cure her sister Kate
However , Kate continues to need parts of Anna's body to survive
Novel is fiction, but very similar to the real life story of the Ayala sisters
Anissa Ayala was diagnosed with leukemia at age 16
Needed a bone marrow transplant but no donor match was available
Her parents decided to produce a second child in hopes that s/he would provide a match
Anissa's sister Marissa-Eve at 14 months old, provided her with a life-saving bone marrow donation.
2003 The human genome is completely sequenced
2009 Fertility Institutes announces plans to screen embryos for hair, eye, and skin color
2009 Nadya Suleman gives birth to octuplets as a result of IVF
2010 Robert Edwards is awarded the Nobel Prize for the development of human in vitro fertilization therapy
Welcome to my presentation :)
What are Designer Babies?
DID YOU KNOW....
A baby whose genetic make-up has been artificially selected through genetic engineering to ensure the presence or absence of particular genes.
Perfect Eye Sight
Resists Addictive Behavior
*In the past 60 years*
"It's the ultimate shopping experience: designing your baby." - Jeremy Rifkin, Foundation on Economic Trends
"We get accused of playing God. But doctors who perform life-- saving surgeries play God every day."- Dr. Jeffrey Steinberg, Director of the Fertility Institutes
How designer babies can affect the future
A family who genetically conceives a child
The sole purpose is to keep their older child who is ill alive
The genetically conceived child eventually grows up and sues her parents for the rights to her own body
Novel written by Jodi PIcoult (2004)
Movie adapted by screenwriter Jeremy Leven (2009)
1990 An international team of scientists begin mapping the human genome
** Gene Therapy: Method of treating disease or disorders by exchanging a healthy gene for a defective one
The aim of this research is to prove that designing human-beings clearly violates all bioethics principles
What is your opinion about the whole idea of designer babies?
The field that is concerned with ethical issues surrounding developments in biology
Bioethics is multidisciplinary
It blends philosophy, theology, history, and laws with medicine, nursing, health policy, and the medical humanities.
Insights from various disciplines are brought to bear on the complex interaction of human life, science, and technology.
Rights of the parent
Children should not be conceived to provide spare parts
New genetic technologies run the risk of increasing the gap between rich and poor
Germline gene therapy has a potential to create a new human species
People in the world would become more materialistic
The lost of natural bond relationship
The lost of individuality
The development of a human from conception to birth
The process of manipulating and modifying genes
In Vitro Fertilization (IVF):
Process by which an egg cell is fertilized by sperm
the mother's body
Pre- Implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD):
It is a genetic screening before they are implanted in the uterus to make sure the embryo has no genetic disease
Child created to "SAVE" an older sibling who is ill, usually by contributing genetic material
Would you ever consider designing your baby?
Would you be upset if your child didn't have certain attributes you wanted him/her to have?
Would you be upset if your child was a different gender than what you wanted him/her to be?
People should be able to take advantage of whatever medical procedures they can afford
There are benefits but I believe the risks are much greater than the positive outcomes
Altering your child's genes could potentially save someone's life but it can leave your child with harmful diseases
Parents may want to try to prevent inheritable diseases, but end up creating other ones
Parents can hurt the child emotionally by making them feel obligated to perform the ability that they were created for, which can lead to high levels of stress and anxiety
Sex selection is sex discrimination
IVF procedures have destroyed millions of embryos
Government regulation interferes with free choice
PGD destroys embryos which may not develop a disorder
Who decides what's normal?
Unwanted physical traits should not be treated as disorders
Embryos should be screened for abnormal genes
IVF procedures help millions of couples have children
Pre- implantation genetic diagnosis helps doctors screen embryos for genetic disorders
Savior babies offer new hope to sick children
Could create a greater gap in society
If the process is not done carefully, the embryo could be accidentally destroyed
Parents may use this technology for superficial purposes
Geneticists are not perfect people and cannot 100% properly evaluate every gene. Not all the information is known about every gene yet.
It is only in the experimental stage; the technology is not 100% safe yet
Individuality will be treated disrespectfully
Although a child cannot take action for his/her rights, he/she still has them.
Parents do have some rights to their child and can decide what they want for the child
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