What Is Embryonic Stem Cell Research

The embryonic stem cells are derived from the embryos. The embryonic cells are harvested at the blastocyst stage of the embryo. The embryonic stem cells have the capability of differentiating itself into any kind of cell, tissue or organ in the body. They are thus called the master cells of the body. The embryonic stem cell research is a hot topic of discussion recently.

What is embryonic stem cell research?

Embryonic stem cells which are present in the human embryos are great research material. It requires human embryos for its harvesting. The embryonic stem cell research make use of these stem cells, which are non-specialized and have retained the property of multiplying and developing into other types of cells found in the body. After November 1998 when scientists first isolated the human embryonic stem cell, it has been a hot topic of discussion whether embryos should be used for the research purpose. The embryos can be obtained by two ways: either from the embryos left over from assisted reproduction attempts in the fertility clinic or the embryos from living human beings which necessitates the destruction of the embryo. The destruction of the living embryo for research purpose has always been opposed and considered unethical. The scientists are of the view that the research using embryonic stem cell will result in great advancement in the medical field and can result in development of medicines for many untreatable diseases like cancer.

Some of the opponents of the research involving embryonic stem cells are the one who understand the benefits of such research but are against the use of unethical means used in the process.

The advocates of the embryonic stem cell research say that it is not unethical to use the stem cells derived from the embryos developed from eggs which has been fertilized in vitro in the fertility clinic. They consider that the use of something which would otherwise been a waste for the welfare of the society is not unethical. They strongly support the use of embryonic stem cells derived from embryos which is not fertilized in woman’s body.

Pros and cons of embryonic stem cell research:

The debate on embryonic stem cell research is due to the fact that it has many pros and cons associated with it. The embryonic stem cell research aims at finding cure for many diseases which are at present incurable such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and heart ailments. The major cons of embryonic stem cell research are the ethical issues associated with it that is the use of living human embryos for study purpose. However, this has now been replaced with the embryos formed as result of in vitro fertilization with the consent of the donor.