Alternative embryonic stem-cell procedures miss the mark, say Christian doctors

.- The United States’ largest association of faith-based physicians says two recently reported developments in embryonic stem-cell research, purportedly designed to allay ethical concerns, “do not circumvent the moral dilemmas of destroying living human beings or exposing them to harm.” Both methods were reported in the October 17 online edition of Nature.

While applauding the search for ethical alternatives, the Christian Medical Association’s leaders note that one procedure involves programming an embryo genetically so that it cannot successfully implant and develop in the uterus.

"Just because scientists have created a genetic time bomb in the embryo does not change its essential human nature,” said CMA executive director Dr. David Stevens.

Another procedure involves removing a cell from an eight-cell embryo, then developing that removed cell in order to harvest embryonic stem cells.

"The cell taken from the embryo to start an embryonic stem cell line, a separated blastomere, is actually a totipotent cell that can develop into a complete organism--a human baby. This process is essentially artificial identical twinning,” Stevens explained in a press release.

"Embryologists have long recognized that these early developing human cells, called blastomeres, have a regulative nature--a strong tendency for the system to be restored to wholeness,” he said. This has been proven in the case of separated blastomeres of animals.

"So to emphasize that the original embryo is not killed is actually to employ a scientific sleight of hand,” said Stevens. “Researchers using this process may not destroy the first embryo, but they do destroy the second one.”

Stevens said this technique also exposes the surviving human being to potential risk. “Even if the surviving embryo is implanted in a womb, no one knows the long-term effect … on children born after being subjected to the procedure.”

In the meantime, he added, “adult stem cells are already providing real cures for real patients.”

His colleague CMA associate executive director Dr. Gene Rudd added: “Clinical trials and treatments using adult stem cells currently provide verifiable progress in treating the very diseases that embryonic stem cell researchers boast that they may cure in 10 years.

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages


Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic

Liturgical Calendar

April 16, 2014

Wednesday of Holy Week

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 26:14-25


Daily Readings

First Reading:: Is 50:4-9a
Gospel:: Mt 26:14-25

Homily of the Day

Mt 26:14-25


Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
Text only

Follow us: