The debate on whether the United States government should fund the stem cell research has been taking a hot turn with emotions raging in both sides of the political divide. Right from 1979, successive governments have acted as impediments towards this research citing morality and ethics as the reason for their reluctance. Reagan, Bush Senior, Clinton and now Bush Junior have not helped much. The controversy dogging this debate stems from the techniques used in the generation of embryonic stem cell. Opponents claim that such practice will lead to the devaluation of human life.
The proponents of state funding cite the immense medial benefits. However, this debate sparks ethical challenges to those in authority in a society that appears to be intolerant of modern science and discoveries (Robertson JA, 78). Although adult stem cell research has received support, embryonic cells research is being frowned upon. Many recognize the benefits that can arise out of this research. Taking all the factors into consideration, it is important that the United States government fund the stem cell research as it stands to be beneficial to humanity. These benefits shall be addressed in this paper. Potential to save life
Almost every biologist will admit that stem cells have been in existence for long and that funding of such research will offer humanity immense medical opportunities. Delving into the structure and functioning of these cells reveals that they possess the potential, if cultured at a tender age, to be modified in to any of the cells in adult bodies. This will be a great leap in health science. There is a particular reason why scientists are pursuing stem cells researcher and requesting for state funding; as cells grow older right from conception, their chance of being reproduced and modified decline tremendously with age.
A few days old embryo presents ripe opportunities of developing new tissues just like those in adult human beings. These cells can then be used in a wide range of health cases and to heal several complications. An example, though controversial, is where embryonic cells are used in people suffering from the Parkinson’s diseases. Those treated were found to exhibit slight improvements (Holland et al, 36). Stem cell research can have immense medical benefits, as still there are more mysteries to be unraveled. Failed organs in the body can release a great boost in stem cells.
Victims with heart complications, diabetics, arthritis, and Alzheimer victims could benefit. Those too with permanent scars arising from burns and spinal cord complications could also go along way with a replacement. Funding stem cell research will revolutionize the medical field. Donor transplantation will be a gone issue; cases of donated organs being rejected will also not arise. To replace vital organs like the lung or the liver will also require duplication, this extends to tissues that cannot be transplanted.
There are uncountable benefits to be reaped from this research and its successful completion. This would save people that otherwise succumb to early deaths (Green, Ronald M, 16). Increasing life spans According to researchers, at the advanced stages of stem cell discoveries, some of the highest killer diseases will be put to stop. It will see emergence of a technology that might see human life span being extended with a number of years more than it is today. Diseases such as cancer and heart diseases that are high killers will no longer be unsettling.
This is a major benefit that can be reaped by humanity should resources be allocated and channeled towards this research. This will ease human sorrow that comes in to seeing our loved ones succumb to untimely and premature deaths as well as peoples’ productivity going to waste due to early deaths. This can have many benefits, as people will be leading long and adequately productive lives. Curing diseases As afore mentioned, researchers have predicted that with ongoing research on stem cell, large number of fatal diseases will find a cure.
This is now being put in to jeopardy by freezing of federal government funding to this research. Various diseases will become treatable, brain cancer being one of them. Children also suffering from diseases such as sickle cell will be given a new lease in life, as has been the case in France, which has recorded more than 85% success. Blood cancer will be the main benefactor to human beings. Stem cell technique, where cells will be boosted and modifications introduced to enable them survive even the most strenuous process of chemotherapy. These advents have been made in the United Kingdom.
The government of the United States should provide resources for such developments; this research holds the key to the cure of various fatal diseases. Jobs creation Tentative statistics on the impact that stem cell technique will have on job creation puts the figure at over 100,000 opportunities annually. This figure is just an estimate and may be understated. Should more funding to the stem cell research be accorded by the government and researchers be allowed to go full scale, the figure is likely to triple in a number of years. Economic boost
The biotech industry at the moment offers job refuge to over two hundred employees. With the recent discoveries on how the use of embryonic stem cells and adult stem cells can provide the cure to killers such as cancer, spinal injuries and the Parkinson diseases, the industry is likely to be the next venue for large financers. The government should chip in and transform this field in to an economic viable venture. A look at most states in the America reveals that politicians are facing a huge dilemma. If they choose to support stem cell research, their popularity amongst votes is at stake.
If they chose to do away with it altogether, they will loose jobs and investments from the willing companies. Huge companies in the biotech industry ranging from Genentech and Amgen are raring to commit their researchers in the states that will provide funds for the research. The United States is also facing international competition in this. While Americans seem to be locked in to an endless battle of morals and ethics, South Koreans and British have recognized the economic potential of these ventures (http://www. issouricures. com/documents/Analysis_091406. pdf. )
Conclusion Politicians in the United States and those in authority are having it rough trying to balance between the benefits brought fourth by stem cell research and ethical queries behind the issue. They are treading cautiously lest voters wrath befall them should they make a wrong move. A look however at the cost benefits analysis of funding stem research indicates that the United States stands to gain much from the research rather than the way it is now.
Stem cell research will lead to discovery of cures of a number of debilitating diseases such as brain cancer and heart disease among others. It will lead to creation of jobs; it will prolong the life span of human beings and some lives. This is what is at stake when federal government denies funds to this research on flimsy grounds based on ethics and morals. This research should not only be funded all the way but also other incentives such as tax reprieves to the biotech companies should be granted to ensure that Americans and the world gains from this research.