Biotechnology is being exploited to accelerate social-revolutionary policies and get through what was once immutable. moral limits. The last example occurred in China, where scientific ethics will die. Here’s the story: Two Shanghai-based researchers surgically tied male and female rats. They then uteri transplanted into male rats and made sure that the blood of the females nourished the organs now in the male bodies.
The male rats were then “impregnated” with IVF and embryo transfer, and some of the males became mothers. “For the first time, we have built a mammalian animal model of male pregnancy,” the researchers boasted in an article published by BioRXiv, an open access journal hosted by Cold Spring Harbor.
Why do that? Part of the impetus may have been to advance a deeply arduous goal of the transgender movement, which is to enable trans women – biological men who identify as women – to give birth.
Indeed, some in bioethics consider this perspective as a human right. For example, an article in the Journal of Medical Ethics at the University of Oxford stated that “there is a moral imperative to ensure equitable access to UTx. [uterine transplant]”for” genetically XY [transgender] women.”
Failure to guarantee these patients the full experience of female reproduction, argued bioethicists, “discriminates against genetically XY women as a social group.” In other words, medical science has the duty of social justice to overturn the transphobic realities of nature.
Transgender is not the only area in which Big Biotech is radically reviewing procreation and the family. Take the genetic engineering of the human germ line, which is the modification of the genome in such a way that it is passed down from generation to generation.
Two genetically modified babies have already been born, again in China. Yes, there has been an international outcry. But beware, the controversy was not so much because of what was done, but when.
You see, the deadly sin did not change the germ lines of the children. This has always been a goal of research into gene editing in human embryos, blessed, among others, by the influential National Academy of Sciences.
No, the real great wrong was to do the deed before the audience has been properly anesthetized with soothing assurances from bioethicists that the moral, social, and security implications of the technology have all been properly addressed. Indeed, George Daley, the dean of Harvard Medical School, argued following the announcement that scientists are expected to continue to engage in human germline engineering despite the fury.
Biotechnologists are also determined to create “three-parent embryos”. The process, a near-cloning technique, removes the nucleus from a woman’s egg, places it in another woman’s egg that has had the nucleus removed, and then fertilizes the genetically modified egg with sperm. Here is, three biological parents.
The purported goal of this extreme method of procreation is to enable women to bear biologically related children without transmitting mitochondrial disease. Fine. But you know the technique, once perfected, would not stop there.
At some point, polyamorous trios desiring to have children biologically related to all mates will also request access. Considering the way medicine is now being applied to facilitate lifestyles as well as cure illnesses – and given the enormous money to be made – who thinks IVF clinics would say no? And if they did, they would likely be prosecuted for discrimination.
The same could be said of the fortunes to be made in other areas of intensive biotechnology research. For example, scientists are working to create human eggs and sperm from skin cells.
What are some of the potential uses for these manufactured sperm and eggs?
- Unlimited eggs for research into human cloning and possibly the birth of a cloned child.
- Creating massive amounts of cloned embryos for use in embryo research or once the artificial uteri are online, “fetal breeding”, that is, creating fetuses as ” donors ”for organ transplant patients.
- Radically restructure the formation of the family, for example, making sperm from the skin cells of a woman to use it to father a child by his wife.
Experiment on embryos
Sure: Big Biotech intends to experiment more and more on embryos – and, I believe, possibly on fetuses – far beyond what they have done so far. Indeed, a main ethical obstacle hindering this end has just been repealed by the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR).
Until now, biotechnologists who experimented with human embryos were supposed to follow the “14-day rule”, meaning that experimental embryos had to be destroyed after two weeks. The time limit was supposedly chosen because that’s when the neural system begins to form.
But the real The reason was that scientists had not yet developed the techniques to keep embryos outside a woman’s body longer than that. Thus, by accepting nix experiments which they could not yet perform, the ISCCR created an open field for research which could be accomplished.
This research has allowed scientists to keep embryos longer, so the 14-day rule is now out of date. The new plan has no time limit, but relies on scientists to get each other’s ethical clearance before performing experiments.
Excuse me for being disappointed. Biotechnologists recently used body parts of nascent human beings in horrific experiments, with the full ethical approval of their peers. An article published in the prestigious scientific journal Nature discussed the “full thickness human fetal skin” transplant – (literally) scalped and skinned dead babies from abortions performed between 18 and 20 weeks, as a “platform for studying human skin infections”. The photos of the “humanized rat models” in the report are not for the faint of heart. They represent the fetal scalps attached to rats still with human hair.
How are these experiences going? Blame us. We allow “scientists” to self-regulate in the hope that they will give us miraculous breakthroughs in return. But to truly serve society in a beneficial way, science requires humility and good ethics to accompany its quests.
Or, in other words, any powerful business – and nothing beats the life-changing potential of biotechnology-Requires rigorous checks and balances to stay on track.
Here’s the gist: Unless society begins the crucial process of deciding, through democratic processes and laws, what to allow or prevent both on the scientific benefit that we hope to obtain and the ethical horrors we are morally bound to prevent – the dystopian future prophesied in the Brave New World novel will come true.
Award-winning author Wesley J. Smith is president of the Center on Human Exceptionalism at the Discovery Institute.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The Epoch Times.